Sad Face: My Role at Microsoft Advertising Has Been “Eliminated”


Maggie’s Last Visit to Daddy’s Office


7 years (2555 days) to the day after I walked into Microsoft in London to help launch adCenter back in 2005, I was told this morning that my role has been “eliminated” in a round of lay offs.

I’ve been told by HR that it’s fine to talk about my new job search on social networks and my blog as the termination has nothing to do with my performance in the job. So as a true social media aficionado, I’m letting you all know that while I’m sad it’s come to this after creating millions of engagements online, writing thousands of blog posts, interviewing hundreds of industry luminaries and speaking at many, many conferences around the world, I have nothing but fantastic memories of working at Microsoft Advertising – 50 of which I’ll write about and publish here in the next couple of weeks.

I’d like to thank all the fabulous colleagues, partners and friends in the industry I’ve met and worked with over the years. It’s been a blast and I can’t wait to see what turns up for me (and you all) next.

Obviously I’m now on the hunt for new roles and projects.

My book will keep me busy – but any long term employment leads and suggestions are welcome via my contact form or through Facebook!

Lastly, thanks to my wife Ashley for her amazing support throughout the years. Her positiveness, drive and enthusiasm for all the work I’ve created over the years has been an inspiration and really kept me going.

And more recently, so has my beautiful daughter Maggie.

That’s it for now! The pub beckons…..

Here’s the the next 7 years!

  • Niall Cook

    Mel, that really sucks. But I’m sure someone with your skills and experience will bounce right back – and you’re in the right place to do it. If we can help in any way, just let us know.

  • Christi Olson

    Mel, I’m sorry to hear your role has been eliminated. That especially sucks since you recently relocated to the US to take the new role. I wish you the best of luck with your job hunt. Any and everyone company would be fortunate to have you on-board so I’m sure that you’ll get snatched up quickly.

  • Eric

    Unfortunate, Mel. I’ve always considered you as an ambassador to the brand in our space. Best of luck, enjoy parenting over the long term – and the pub in the short term.

    Cheers on a job well done.

  • Barry Schwartz

    I am sorry to hear that, that is a huge loss for Microsoft.

    I am sure you will find something new and great soon.

    Best of luck and awesome work while on adCenter!

  • Jewel

    Mel – You’re a true ROCK STAR and I for one am excited to see what you’ll do next!

  • Jason Yormark

    Wow Mel, sorry to hear that, and I obviously can relate. Completely ridiculous for a company to let someone with your talent and background go. Makes zero sense, and just another reason the folks at MS just don’t get it.

    You’ll have no problem landing elsewhere and wish you the best of luck. I’ll certainly keep my eyes peeled.

  • Matt Davidson

    Mel, sorry to hear about it. If it’s any condolence, I’ve known quite a few people that have been laid off by MSFT and all have landed in better places. I’m sure someone with your level of visibility and experience will have no problem going on to doing great things else where.

  • Anthony

    Hi Mel, glad to see your well, sorry to hear about your job. I have no doubts you will find something equally as awesome very quickly. Ant

  • Michael Sullivan

    Mel, I’m so very sorry that this has happened to you. One thing for sure, you’re one of countless numbers around the world-small consolation right now I know. With your abilities and drive you’ll be fine. You come from tough stock, remember? Best wishes from a cousin and a fan!

  • Mel Carson

    Thanks so much everyone. Really appreciate the kind words. Check back for the 50 ‘Mazing Memories from Microsoft post in a few days!

    • Craig Eady

      Keep your head up, another door will open for you, concentrate on your family first and I hope the book goes well for you.

  • Michael Sullivan

    That’s my boy! See from the above that you’ll have the last word!!

  • Lee Odden

    Yet another reason Microsoft is “no longer cool”. Such a loss for them.

    Your book will indeed keep you busy Mel, let me know how we can help promote.

  • Robin Laylin

    You’ve a bright future for sure. My impression of you while at Microsoft was that you were promoting company solutions that were not as visionary or thoughtful as you are. There is a huge landscape of really cool enablers for brands, and I am very confident that you will write the next chapter in short order. In the meantime, best wishes to you and your lovely family.


  • Ciaran

    Gutted for you mate. Their loss, someone else’s gain.

  • Don Dodge

    Mel, There is life after Microsoft. Being laid off from Microsoft was the best thing that ever happened to me. Had they not laid me off I would probably still be there. Be open to new horizons. You will be surprised what is out there.

    Don Dodge

  • Eric

    This is a major loss, Mel. Very sorry to see it happen. I guess that’s the final gift of “welcome to America”… :(

  • cedric

    Gutted… As you can imagine. What’s the plan, geographically I mean?

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  • duane forrester

    Joining your :( Mel. Good news is no one will forget you. ;) Better news is you rock, so after some time for that book, you’ll find a new direction (if not before… :) ).


  • Darren Cronian

    Hi Mel, while I’ve not had the opportunity to meet you yet, i can tell from what I’ve seen on the social networks that you’ve worked your rocks off (pardon the expression!) for Microsoft, and I wish you the best in whatever the future holds.

    I wasn’t aware of your upcoming book, so I will keep a look out for it being published with interest.

    All the best,

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  • David

    Ah Mel that’s a shame you have done an amazing job at shifting the perception of Microsoft as a advertising partner and certainly done some amazing interviews. But I’m sure you will be well placed to make the next career move and great to see you are now 110% behind your new book.

    Might see you in August for a beer when I’m in Seattle :)

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    Mel, sorry to hear the news. I enjoyed all of the interviews we did together over the years. No doubt that a talent such as yourself will end up in a good place.

  • http://n/a Patricia Melville

    Mel, so very sorry to learn of the layoff @ Microsoft. These things happen sometimes in life, but honestly speaking “when one door closes, another one opens….” You will have so many other opportunities I am sure, and always remember that you are well liked and respected in the business. Go ROCK STAR, GO!!….You’ll have all the love and support from Ashley and Maggie (and me) too. xx

  • Sanat Gersappa

    Bummer. You were the face of Microsoft Advertising.

    All the best for the future. I’m sure you’re going to shine at whatever you do next.

  • Sean Rooney

    Hey Mel, it’s been a long time since we’ve spoken…I’m sure you’ll do well mate….onwards and upwards ;-)

  • Becky

    Sorry to hear that Mel :(
    Just remember though that everything happens for a reason and I’m sure you will start an exciting new chapter in your career.
    Our door is always open for you if you fancy a move back to UK.

  • Frank Fuchs

    Trust me you will make a happy face thinking of this day in no time. Excited to see where you will go

  • Jennifer Slegg

    Wow, you were the face of Microsoft Advertising, a huge loss for Microsoft. Good luck on wherever life leads you next.

  • Mahesh Mohan

    Oh! That’s a sad part…. Its time to redefine the whole MS Advertising division…

  • Simon

    Sorry to hear about that Mel. It was great working with you back in the day. Best of luck on your next pursuits!!!

  • Dan Cohen

    Mel – that’s really surprising news, sorry to hear about this. Let me join DuaneF in adding my own sad face :(

    You did a great job at MS and it’s really their loss! Best of luck with your book and whatever you decide to do next.


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  • Usman

    Sorry to hear the news. What are Microsoft playing at! 7 years commitment @ a huge corporation is bloody good going and am sure you will receive a flood of offers for your next challenge!

    I’ve got a sneaky feeling that you will you not be out of employment for too long!

    Keep us all updated. :-)

  • Ravleen Beeston

    Hi Mel – really couldn’t believe it when I saw this?! You have been amazing and it’s been an honour to have worked with (and have been interviewed by!) you. Obviously people will be queuing to snap you up. Best of luck and love to Ashley and Maggie xx

  • candace kuss

    Come back to London Mel so we can meet Maggie. Or start an online Mel Carson Show and interview all the start-up people making the new new thing. You’re a star x

  • NeilM

    Very sorry to hear that news, Mel.

  • Andrew Girdwood

    Read this last night – think I was too shocked to leave a comment. I can’t imagine how you’re feeling.

    Are you in Seattle?

  • Laura Stampler

    Hi Mel, That’s really awful to hear. I’m a reporter at Business Insider and have been doing some coverage on what’s going on at Microsoft’s ad department. Would love to chat to you (or anyone else who has insights). Please shoot me an email at

    Thanks so much and again, really sorry about the job.

    • Mel Carson

      Thanks Laura. Not commenting any futher than this blog post. I still work for Microsoft for the next 60 days as I try and work out the next stage in my career. The wife would murder me if I messed up any severance package! ;-) As I say, I have nothing but good memories and am looking forward to my next chapter.

      • Paul Springer

        …btw, your next chapter is published on 3rd October!

  • Matthew

    Don’t really know you personally but we met once at a conference, I asked for help and you immediately did your utmost to help me out. Although I’m sorry to hear what happened at Microsoft, I’m sure that this will open up a lot of great opportunities for you.

    Just a quick note, you might remember me, I’m Matthew from Malta. On the day you had presented, bing’s homepage was displaying a picture of Malta.

    If I can help in anyway just let me know.

  • Colm Bracken

    Can’t tell you how disappointed I was to hear this. You’ve been a great mentor of mine here at Microsoft and I learned a great deal. Including how to drink far too many pints in Victoria, Shepherd’s Market, Cannes and NYC to name but a few.

    A big loss for us but as others have said, and a huge gain for the next company who snaps you up.

  • John

    Does it strike anyone as ominous that Microsoft marketing is laying off core people associated with their pay per click services?
    Best of luck, this is when all that networking will pay off

  • brad

    Mel – that sucks; but as Don said – its probably a blessing in disguise.

    If you need help promoting the book – just let me know.

    Are you staying in Seattle?

  • Andy McCormick

    Really sorry to hear this Mel but you will undoubtedly go from strength to strength.

    I know of some opps in London – drop me a mail when you can.

    All the best in the mean time.


  • David Szetela

    I’m sure many doors will be opening for you, Mel – the tough part might be deciding among the tempting opportunities! Let me know if there’s anything I can do to help.

  • Satish Jayakumar

    Sorry to hear that Mel & am shocked at the poor judgement shown by MSFT here. For many of us, you have been the torch bearer (Olympic fever?) of their brand for so many years. Look upon this as a great opportunity.

    There is a very deserving company out there whose brand is going to be lit up in lights as soon as you decide to get back into it and join them.

    Until then, sit back & relax and enjoy the time off.

  • Adam Goodman

    Mel, As I already wrote on your FB, a huge shock to hear this. As someone who is not only one of the most influential industry people I know but also someone who lives and breathes passion in what you do – know that you will land on your feet. Author of your first book should now be a best seller…I’m certainly going to buy it. Good luck in the hunt for that next move, the queue of companies wanting you by now must be around the corner already – so although sad news today, a new and exciting adventure from tomorrow onwards.

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  • Diego Dagum

    Consider yourself lucky, Mel. A professional like you had nothing to do there. Get ready for your next battle and leave losers alone.

  • Haseeb Shaik

    Mel , sorry to hear that, that is a huge loss for Microsoft.

  • Jeremiah Andrick


    Really sorry to hear this. I promise though, it is better on the outside. I imagine you will be out doing bigger and better things in no time. Let me know if you ever want to catch a beer or coffee and catch up.

    Best of luck!

  • Gareth O’ Neill

    Mel, I’m shocked to hear this! That’s nuts! You were the face of Microsoft advertising and always provided a happy vibe around the London office. Best of luck with the next chapter of your career. Still can’t understand why this is happening.

  • Peter Bell

    Sorry to hear this Mel, not sure what to day here other than take strength from it.

  • miller

    mel–you led the charge at microsoft and are so well respected. you join so many of us who have left the empire and moved to greater things! best to you and the family!

  • Todd Crawford


    Very sorry to hear this news. It affected me so much that I dreamed my job was eliminated last night – woke up in the middle of the night with a start!

    I know you know this but sometimes things happen for the best – I expect an exciting new adventure in your near future.

    I look forward to hearing what’s next.

    Take care.

  • Stacy O’Connell

    Terrible news for now, but it only means that something far greater is just around the corner. Best of luck to you.

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  • Paul Springer

    The journey via book activities will set in train great stories to tell – and a career springboard. Rhe irons in the fire look compelling so head up, look forward!

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  • Gavin Lennon

    Mel – very sorry to hear the news, what rotten luck. Best wishes to you & family (hey, more time for you & Maggie to bond !), and good luck in the future – you will bounce back I do not doubt!

  • Jill Kelly

    Your next chapter will be the best chapter (until the chapter after that!). The best of luck to you Mel.

  • Charles Gerada

    That’s unbelievable Mel. You’re the man in that world. It’s a decision that is probably equalled only by Chelsea Football Club’s decision to sack the most successful manager in the Club’s history (arguably in the world at the time).

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  • Annie Katrina Lee

    Unbelievable. I’m so sorry to hear this, Mel. You are such a rockstar and I will be cheering you on! Onwards and upwards, right? :)

  • Lori Ho

    This is going to be the best thing that ever happened to you. Life after Microsoft is bliss. Can’t wait to see what you think of next.

  • Jimbo

    Sorry to hear this. It’s been fun following your career bro’. I’m sure you’ll succeed in whatever turns up next.

  • Steve

    Mel, we never met or spoke but your story is inspiring. I would have to believe there will be hundreds of offers coming your way. Every time I leave a position, either on my own or otherwise, I ALWAYS end up in a better position. The future moves in one direction. So lean forward.

    Best of luck.

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  • JWC

    Truth be told I never liked your stuff on MSAdvertising BUT I thought you did bring to MSFT what it lacked: Personality.

    Being able to make relationships is priceless. You clearly managed that, and divided opinion (see opening line of this comment!)

    Oh, and a few years ago I got the same “elmination”…. get the money, and enter the world.

    Time to move on. Some ate you, they will get eaten. It is how it works at MSFT.

    But you know that, right?!

    There is life after MSFT, you’ll be fine.

  • Big Brother !

    Matthew you inspire all three of my sons regularly.
    I talk proudly of you to my friends about your achievements.
    You have a fantastic supportive wife and of course daughter.
    Take time to reflect and research, and I, like many others are looking forward to seeing what opportunities come your way and which path you take.x

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  • nottinhill

    Sad to hear, I also once have been a Softie. It’s now time for you to fire up that gnu/emacs editor and start giving back that code and knowledge of yours. Welcome to the dark side, young Padawn. (You know in reality it’s the bright side, but that’s not what MIcrosoft tells you).

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  • Jon Myers

    Gutted to hear that mate! Here’s to the next 7 bigger and better years! Must catch up soon.

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  • Mel Carson

    Hi All

    Thanks so much for all the support and kind thoughts!

    Been working on promoting the book for a couple of weeks. Here’s our latest post which reveals the Pioneers we picked to showcase their inspirational stories.

    Enjoy and share if you think it’ll be relevant to your friends:

    I’ll have an announcement to make on 10th September too!



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