Cannes Lions

We All Win

HUNGRY MAN, Los Angeles / MICROSOFT / 2019

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People with disabilities are used to having to find ways to adapt to the world, especially when it comes to video games. As the brand with a mission to empower everyone on the planet to achieve more, Microsoft has had a long-standing commitment to create accessible technology the levels the playing field. Now, instead of gamers with limited mobility having to adapt to the controller, the Xbox Adaptive Controller is the first video game controller that adapts to how they play.


Video and gaming have always gone hand in hand, so it was only natural to focus our craft on the most popular visual storytelling device when telling an empowerment story. In addition, we discovered gamers over-index in time spent watching online video and long form video, which was another reason we based each chapter of our campaign around video.

Our goal for the film was to be authentic and real. The docu-style film was powerful not only because it was different from what people expect to see at the Super Bowl--a hotbed for overproduced, celebrity-filled commercials--it also captured kids and their stories in an authentic way through a more human approach to storytelling.


We assembled a cast of real gamers with disabilities and those who love them and let their voices drive the storytelling in the film to demonstrate how the Adaptive Controller enhances their gaming experience. We shared their stories on the Super Bowl, a day when everyone is intensely focused on the idea of play and winning, to shine a light on kids who are rarely shown in mass media and convey a different message about what it means to win: When everybody plays, we all win.


The campaign launched in social media and the Thursday before Super Bowl LIII. Paid digital support ran 1/31 and run through 2/8. The TV spot aired on February 3 in Super Bowl programming (fourth quarter) and on Monday, February 4 in CBS Morning News. Video content is live online on Microsoft’s Empowering Us All site and may continue throughout the year.


The campaign received extensive press coverage over the following days with over 635 placements, coverage on key morning shows like Good Morning America, Today Show and CBS This Morning. Social reach was incredible and unprecedented for Microsoft, with support from gamers, fans and celebrities garnering 35 million in earned media and tens of millions of organic views across all our channels. AdWeek deemed this spot the "most effective" ad of 2019's Super Bowl game with an UnrulyEQ score of 7.5. It also scored highest for brand metrics such as credibility and authenticity (both at 95%). USA TODAY Ad Meter placed this "We All Win" in 3rd place during the 2019 Super Bowl with a rating of 7.07.

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