Dell announces an “ambitious” marketing campaign using WPP as its “ambitious” partner. See an analysis from Fortune here. Problem with this “ambitious” plan is that Dell’s problem isn’t marketing — it’s the stuff that Dell makes and sells. Put it this way — you can put pictures of dog shit on every billboard in the world, but you’re not going to convince people it’s foie gras.
The most amazing thing is that even the fawning hacks at Fortune seem to realize this. Not that they’d ever come out and say that, because, um, well, I’m not really sure why they don’t just come out and say that. Instead they do a story that seems, superficially, to take Dell’s statements at face value, and then they slide in a few hints that they actually don’t buy it. The key word here is “ambitious,” which is hack-speak for “Oh please.”
Little tip to Dell on how to turn this around: Invite the Fortune hacks down and let them ride with Michael on his Gulfstream. Soon you’ll get yourself a big slurpy Fortune cover story about Dell’s amazing recovery with a huge Marvell comic style headline — RAISING DELL! — and a crazy Tom Wolfe style opening like this: “I’m playing backgammon with Michael Dell on his private jet and he’s furious — furious! — because I’m winning. Because, you see, if I’m winning, this means he’s losing. Losing! And one thing this brash, brazen, boyish billionaire does not do is lose. Ever. At anything. But facts are facts. Michael Dell is losing. No, this will not stand! He leans forward and glares at the board, as if willing the game — no, commanding it — to obey his will.”
Blah blah glug glug. Wait and see. It’ll happen.