Microsoft has extended its relationship with Dentsu Aegis Network for its global media planning and buying business. Confirming the extension, Kathleen Hall – Corporate VP of brand, advertising and research- Microsoft said in a statement that the extension of the relationship followed a review of its global media agencies.
Reports say that agencies like Wavemaker, Starcom and UM were also competing for the account, and Carat which is also a Dentsu Aegis Network was also in the pitch. However, Omnicom did not pitch for the account due to an account conflict with Apple. Microsoft’s creative business which is at present handled by m:united//McCann was not put into review.
Further for the year 2017. Microsoft’s sales and marketing expenses increased US$842 million or 6%. This was mainly due to LinkedIn expenses and increased investments in sales capacity for Microsoft’s commercial cloud, offset in part by a reduction in phone and marketing expenses.
Advertising expense was US$1.5 billion, US$1.6 billion, and US$1.9 billion in fiscal years 2017, 2016, and 2015, respectively.
In 2014 Microsoft assigned its creative mandate to Interpublic Group (IPG) and for media planning, media buying and search advertising to Dentsu Aegis Network. At IPG, creative, localisation and deployment will be handled by various agency teams throughout IPG’s global network. Prior to the appointment, Publicis Groupe’s MediaVest handled media buying in the US and Interpublic’s UM handled the overseas markets.