In order to compete with Adobe's popular Flash-based viewers and software, Microsoft has launched their own version known as MSN Silverlight. The campaign behind the Silverlight, however, is rather interesting.
MSN UK has developed an interactive sci-fi web series Kirill, starring British actor David Schofield, best known for his roles in Pirates of the Carribean and Gladiator.
Three supporting blogs have been set up to feed into the action, and three-minute episodes will be released on Tuesdays and Fridays over the next five weeks. The show launched on 30 October and initial viewing figures are in the tens of thousands, according to Peter Bale, executive producer, MSN, aka the self-confessed ‘content person’.
Bale adds that Microsoft hasn’t done anything on this scale before, describing it as ‘more viral and risky’. He adds that, being ‘somewhat male in focus’, it’s been a perfect vehicle for Microsoft Xbox, and it’s also being ‘supported’ by Windows Vista.
Viral and risky? Certainly doesn't sound like Microsoft, but the campaign sounds rather intriguing and it's always great to see marketers take a calculated risk.