Windows 10, Microsoft’s most recent operating system, was the most audacious release in the history of the platform. With the consumerisation of technology driving a rapid adoption of new, innovative technologies, consumers are demanding seamless, interoperable, personalised and secure experiences across all their personal devices (phone, PC, tablet, gaming console etc.) ushering in a new era of platform unification.
We were tasked not only with launching the new platform to South African consumers and business decision makers, but would also be responsible for the repositioning of the Microsoft brand among users in the market.
WHAT WE DID:
The primary objective for the Windows 10 launch event was to celebrate this defining moment in tech history with fans of the Windows platform- generating brand love and affinity for Windows 10- while generating mass talkability and publicity that would drive awareness, interest, mass downloads and device purchases. The aim was to capture iconic imagery and video collateral of fan moments.
Presented with this opportunity, we embarked on a journey of inclusion; bringing together consumers, children, business decision makers, customers and Microsoft partners into the local launch activities.
We planned all elements of the event: branding, partner and school inclusion, press activities and engagements, videography, photography, as well as the facilitation of live social engagement on the ground.
The Johannesburg based event was split into a day function and an evening function. The day event was MC’d by YO-TV presenter, Karabo, complemented by a live (age appropriate) band entertaining the 350 10-year old learners, with their respective teachers, from schools across Gauteng.
The children were some of the first consumers in Gauteng to touch, play and engage with the new Windows 10 platform, participating in activities throughout the day that ranged from PC gaming on a range of Windows 10 PCs, learning how to get creative with paint and ink on a computer, being skilled in some key tips and tricks for Maths class on excel, even learning how to use Skype while talking to a group of children in Morocco. A range of activities were hosted in four zones complemented with entertainment consisting of stilt walkers, ball jugglers, popcorn and candy floss stands with several outdoor games and entertainment to amuse the attending scholars.
The evening portion of the event focused on an older fan base, comprising corporate and consumer customers, partners, retailers, developers, Windows insiders, students and advertisers, as well as key media, with Emmanuel Castis as the MC. The event was inspired by the South African spirit of exuberance and passion, with activity and communication on the day underpinned by proof points highlighting Microsoft’s commitment to the continent.
The event aimed to capture and showcase the South African spirit, bringing meaning to the launch of a product that has the potential to open a world of opportunity to its users. The evening culminated in a high-energy performance by local band, Crash Car Burn, as the Joburg skyline was illuminated with fireworks.
WHAT WE ACHIEVED:
Kevin Welman, MD of FleishmanHillard Johannesburg, says: “Microsoft SA saw a major hike in downloads after the event, which had a significant impact on the company’s internal target. And the value of communication was recognised at the next day all staff event.”