I'm not a big fan of the Super Bowl or football in general, and I'm not someone who can't wait to see the advertisements, but I do believe the Microsoft advertisement was incredibly important and one of the few worth watching.
If you haven't seen the ad, it portrays children with different disabilities talking about their love for video games and how they are able to build relationships through them. It emphasizes how no one is held back from playing because the product is fully accessible. Overall, it creates a sense of unity and inclusion, saying that their product makes us all win.
I believe it.
I find corporate social responsibility or a function in which companies integrate social and environmental concerns into their work to support themselves and their community, to be crucial and something a company owes the public with the voice and visibility it has. From a business standpoint, it's also a good idea since companies who engage in it earn higher levels of trust and overall positive feelings from the public. People want to support companies doing good, inspiring work.
I sometimes wonder how sincere companies are in their advertisements supporting a certain cause. While I understand that the point of an ad is to increase consumerism, I still believe that social responsibility in and of itself should be sincere, not just for monetary purposes.
I believe Microsoft's support for kids with disabilities is an authentic one, however, as it made a product that supports those individuals. It's making a tangible change and working to support a minority — and therefore spending time and money on a smaller target audience.
As someone who's super focused on and specific about diversity and inclusion, I believe they could've done a slightly better job with the representation of identities. However, I appreciate how Microsoft is supporting a generally underrepresented community and showed different genders, disabilities, and races.
In addition, I believe that this advertisement did a solid job of making people simply feel good. The advertisement was clear, inspiring, and brought joy in what could be a tough situation. It showed happy children saying positive things and also brought in how this matters to us all.
While Microsoft surpassed Apple financially towards the end of last year, the competition is tight. I know personally that I see Apple products everywhere, especially iPhones and even Mac computers. This is an additional reason why I believe having an ad like this would be so beneficial to a company's success.
The bottom line is that those of us who are able-bodied have a responsibility to those who are not to make our products and services accessible, and I'm grateful that Microsoft is making great strides in this effort. I hope their success will encourage other companies and individuals to do the same.