My friends love to give me a hard time for being such an Apple fanboy. I can honestly blame it all on a good friend, Bill Dawson, who bought me my first Apple device – an AppleTV… and then worked with me at a company where we were the first product managers to use MacBook Pros. I've been a fan ever since and now, outside of the Homepod and Airport, I have every single device. With each software and hardware upgrade, I'm amazed at the tightly integrated ecosystem that Apple continues to deliver to their customers. I'm disappointed in professionals in my industry that continue to take shots at Apple while they continue to quietly transform how we interact with our environment through technology.
As I mentioned in a thread to one of the naysayers, the day that your Fitbit, Google Home, Windows device, Android phone, and Roku will work seamlessly with one another will never happen. Apple is pushing innovation right in the weak spot of every competitor… the fact that they are all independent of one another. That said, there's always room for innovation for Apple. I'd really like to see much more innovation in home automation. In my opinion, Amazon is really kicking their butts with the skills available for Echo.
Enough said about Apple's innovation, let's move onto their marketing. One thing that I respect about Apple's marketing is that it typically focuses on the beauty and elegance of their devices or the potential that people are tapping into with them. There's no doubt that focusing on beauty helped… walk through an electronics store nowadays and every phone, tablet, or laptop you see is practically a replica of Apple devices. People are proud of the tools they use, and pulling an ultralight, thin, aluminum, unibody laptop from your bag with a retina display always feels good.
Here's a great example where they show off the iPad Pro:
The potential in their commercials is always what gets me. Whether it's just dancing to music from the original iPod commercials, or their Behind the Mac commercial that spotlights some of the most talented people on the planet, Apple taps into your emotions.
The Website Group gathered 10 Lessons from Apple's marketing strategy that encompass all the areas of focus for the company. In the following infographic, 10 Marketing Lessons from Apple, they include:
- Keep It Simple – In apple marketing there isn't typically any information on where and how to buy their products. Instead, the ads and other marketing messages are very straightforward – typically showing the product and letting it speak for itself.
- Use Product Placement – Once an influencer shares your product and shows their followers how beneficial it is, the seed is planted and leads are made.
- Leverage Reviews – Apple has done well getting reviews from its customers.
- Focus on Unique Value Proposition rather than Price – Whatever device Apple is offering, they make sure the customer feels like it's worth paying the higher price. One exception, in my opinion, is their adapters.
- Stand for Something – Demonstrate to your audience that your brand can always be counted on to deliver what they stand for.
- Create Experiences, Not Just Products – Anyone can make a product, but not many can created an experience for the customer that is memorable and entices them to come back again and again.
- Speak to Audiences Using Their Language – By avoiding terms and explanations that only serve to confuse and overwhelm, Apple has found a way to reach customers on a new level that the competition still has not figured out.
- Develop an Aura and Mystery Around What You Are Doing – Usually, marketers tell their customers everything about a product, but Apple creates more excitement by withholding information and making everyone speculate.
- Appeal to Emotions – Apple's ads show happy people having a great time with their iPads and iPhones rather than focusing on memory size or battery life.
- Use Visuals – If used well, video and images and compelling audio have a much greater impact on customer experience.
Here's the full infographic: