Geoff Wilson / Innovation / July 30th, 2009

How "Shrimp and Weenies" Became a Clever Trade Show Campaign

If you are familiar with Microsoft lore, you may have heard of the famous “Shrimp and Weenies” memo that was distributed to Microsoft employees in the early 1990s.  The memo makes the point that Microsoft party planners should serve weenies instead of shrimp at parties, because they are less expensive but achieve the same effect.  The point carries over to all Microsoft employees, encouraging them to select weenies over shrimp and thus achieve more with less. As one of Microsoft’s MSVP vendors, last month our company had the opportunity to exhibit at Microsoft’s Digital Vendor Fair.  We were exhibiting alongside other MSVP Digital Vendors, which means some of our competition was there.  Also, Microsoft’s very large agencies of record were exhibiting.  They do great work, but they are very expensive and only handle large projects for Microsoft. Peter VanRysdam, our Vice President of Marketing, was intent on finding a way to make our company stand out from the other exhibitors.  Peter came up with the great idea of using Microsoft’s own “Shrimp and Weenies” concept to promote what makes us better, which is the fact that we are more flexible and less expensive than Microsoft’s large agencies of record, while still producing excellent work. So what would a trade show be without some swag?  Here was ours:

The shrimp read, “352 Media Group provides Microsoft with Shrimp… on a Weenie Budget!” They were a huge hit and the show went great!  Thanks to Peter and our team for making it happen!