Microsoft 'Butterfly' Effort Flits From Wisconsin to NYC

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Microsoft debuted a $300 million marketing campaign for its MSN 8 Internet service yesterday in Superior, WI, and also in New York City's Times Square, where a massive billboard was unveiled.


Microsoft's largest campaign to date includes direct mail, online advertising, print, radio and television spots.


The company began the effort from the Midwestern city to push the theme that Microsoft can provide a superior Internet service to consumers. Those two events begin the countdown to the Oct. 24 launch of MSN 8 in the United States.


The "it's better with the butterfly" campaign runs through mid-2003. The online initiative begins Oct. 24 and runs five days. It was developed by Avenue A, an interactive advertising agency. Clark Kokich, president of Avenue A, said the campaign is designed to reach more than 90 percent of the available and active Internet audience.


"There will be high-impact home page Flash commercials running on 11 sites," he said, "along with a significant online presence on five others."


Sites taking part in the campaign include USA network, Infospace network, ABC News network, CBS Marketwatch, New York Times, Ask Jeeves, CNET, weather.com, Washington Post and MSN. Kokich said these sites provide Microsoft the broadest possible reach and the largest "possible unduplicated audience."


All other ads begin appearing Oct. 24 as well.


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