May 3, 2010

When I said that Microsoft owns Seattle...

...I meant it.  The following photo is from a press conference where Seattle Seahawks head coach Pete Carroll's announced the team's draft picks (Russell Okung, Earl Thomas, Golden Tate, etc).  I feel like this goes without mentioning, but you do remember that the Seahawks are owned by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, right?

Carroll's forehead, not yet available.

Apparently, according to Darren Rovell, the microphone flag is the new frontier for media partnerships (about two-thirds of NFL teams already have practice jersey sponsorship deals in place.  The Seahawks' practice jersey sponsor?  C'mon, guess).  Even crazier?  The PR-speak from the respective parties involved.  First, the Seahawks' CEO Tod Leiweke:
"We rely on partnerships with companies like Bing to make our business work.  The mic flag seemed to be a rational thing to offer as part of our bigger relationship with the Bing brand."
And second, Bing's director of marketing and public relations Lisa Gurry:
"We're interested in building this brand in unique, unconventional ways and the mic flag is an example of that.  By putting our brand on the mic flag, we're putting our brand front and center of the most important dialogue that takes place."
This whole thing seems silly for a number of reasons.  Isn't Bing part of Microsoft?  Who are the Seahawks and Microsoft fooling acting as if Bing is some separate entity?  And, perhaps more importantly, all this for a microphone flag?

Sigh.  I guess when Gurry says that the brand will be at the center of dialogue, I can only hope she means that Bing, Microsoft, Windows 7, and Paul Allen hope Pete Carroll will say something ridiculous enough this season to be featured in a Coors Light commercial or something.

Good luck with that, Coach Carroll.

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