The Christmas Truce

Microsoft decided to take a page from the famous Christmas Truce of 1914 and has released an advertisement calling for peace between itself and Apple this Christmas season. The video consists of Microsoft employees gathering on the plaza in front of an Apple store and performing Let There Be Peace On Earth.

This comes in stark contrast to last year when Microsoft compared its Surface Pro 3 to Apple’s Mac Book Air.

Microsoft and Apple are collaborating on this commercial. According to AdAge: “Microsoft had to get permission from Apple to perform the song on the store’s plaza.”[1]

Why would Apple agree to this?

Traditionally, whenever you have a ‘comparison’ commercial (i.e. the old Oxyclean commercials that would name a competitor rather than say ‘this leading competitor’s brand’), the sales of both brands benefit, even when one brand is presented as superior. This is because a comparison commercial inherently builds brand awareness for both the advertised product and the ‘compared-to’ product.

The Microsoft commercial is not a comparison commercial. However, it is a commercial that discusses two brands. Microsoft is preaching the message of peace, and Apple is accepting. Both brands are strengthening brand recognition while simultaneously participating in the Christmas spirit.

The commercial helps Apple and Microsoft. This year, the brand leaders achieve the same goal as last year’s comparison commercials, but with an olive branch.

[1], 12/1/15

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