Rotten Pineapple

I am continuously amazed by Microsoft's marketing machine. The size of their marketing budget must be staggering! As a certified partner organization, we signed up to participate in a partner marketing campaign--sort of an online pep rally (their acronym for these programs is PEP: Partner Engagement Program). This particular PEP is targeted at helping us grow our small business engagements.

So, I'm getting to the rotten pineapple...patience. Read on: We recently moved our office to a different part of town, so Friday I get a call from DHL. The guy says that they are trying to deliver a four-pound package from Microsoft to me. I told him where our new office is, and I started wondering what in the world Microsoft is sending me that weighs four pounds. Usually I get software on CDs, or occasionally marketing materials or partner materials. Anyway, it had my curiosity piqued.

Well, today the delivery came. The DHL guy walks in with this large box that is covered in a glossy photo of Hawaiian islands: sand, sun, surf. Inside there were two artifical flower leis and -- you guessed it -- a rotten pineapple! Well, I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt. It probably would have been fresh had it been delivered on time, but due to our move, it got delivered late. I think it was one of these deals where it was shipped directly from Hawaii. The catch was that they are giving away a trip to Hawaii for a randomly selected partner who submits a good deployment case study.

Just amazing though, how much money they spent on that. It had to cost $40 for the contents of the box. There was a CD and some marketing material in there as well. Multiply that by, I don't know, 1,000? 5,000? partner organizations that signed up for this, and you get $40,000 to $200,000 for this marketing gimmick. I know MS is loaded with cash, but did anyone do an ROI study on this? I would have appreciated a nice pen...(I'm kidding Microsoft: Keep sending me fruit and other expensive items!)



ICU MSCRM © 2004-2009