End of Global Advertising?

Global advertising seems to be the wave of the future. With the creations of social media and digital media, companies that wanted to succeed added global advertising sales teams to their divisions.

That is at least what it used to seem to be. Now, things may be changing.

As of Wednesday, October 29th 2014, Microsoft  laid off its global advertising salesforce in the US, UK and other global offices. Microsoft’s advertising had spaces across Skype, Outlook, Xbox, Bing, Windows 8 and MSN properties. This job cut, which affects 18,storm-14000 roles, has been the largest sweep of job cuts in Microsoft’s history. Many clients of Microsoft were told by account managers of Microsoft Advertising that they would no longer be able to finish up the lined up campaigns.

Many are confused as to why Microsoft picked to cut their global agencies and accounts team since the handle “all of Microsoft’s relationship with top advertising agencies and brand-side marketers, as well as Yarn, an in-house creative team responsible for keeping marketers up to date with the latest updates to its advertising formats” (1).

Microsoft has yet to provide further information as to why they specifically closed down their digital advertising division.

The only people from Microsoft’s Advertising team that were not let go of (for now) were the executive team headed by Frank Holland. By keeping the executive team, this means that there is still a sales team in place and that Microsoft Advertising is “streamlining to favor negotiating larger partnerships with key brands, rather than concentrating selling large volumes of display inventory across its network” (1).

Many sites, such as eMarketer, speculated Microsoft’s decision to close Microsoft Advertising based on their shares of global display advertising market the previous year. They were at 2.45% whereas Google was at 31.92% and Facebook at almost 6%. In addition, last year sold their Atlas online advertising server to Facebook, another key sign that they were trying to remove themselves from global advertising sector.

What do you think about Microsoft’s decision to lay off their global advertising salesforce? Do you think Microsoft is coming up with a different strategy to advertise effectively or do you think this may be a beginning sign to the end of companies relying on global advertising?


OReilly, L. (2014, October 31). Microsoft Fires Global Advertising Sales Team. Retrieved November 4, 2014, from http://www.businessinsider.com/microsoft-advertising-sales-team-redundancies-2014-10

Image taken from: http://www.storminvestor.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/08/storm-14.jpg

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