Businesses in Seattle are lining up for a test program from Microsoft. To promote the Collections custom mapping feature on Live Search, Microsoft is mounting huge ballons on the corners of the buildings that look like pushpins. These businesses have been marked in the mapping program as part of a collection, making them appear very special. Wouldn't it be fun if your favorite haunts were marked and you could tell all your friends? This is a marketing campaign that makes it fun for everyone to participate.
SeattlePI.com: Microsoft's latest marketing ploy: Gigantic pushpins. 2007-Jun-28, by Todd Bishop
Microsoft didn't pay to install the pins. Instead, Osmer said, the businesses are assuming they'll be getting some attention out of the arrangement, as well. The pins will be in their current locations for a couple of weeks, and Microsoft plans to put more pins elsewhere in the city in the coming month. If the campaign is successful, Osmer said, it may be expanded to other cities.