Apple – Smart Timing or Smart Communications?

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Both. Apple’s meteoric rise to become one of the most enviable (and richest) businesses in the world is quite an accomplishment. Once, capsule making products relegated to mostly creative geeks serving a targeted niche, advice to now breaking the mold in consumer devices and driving sales to stratospheric levels, Apple has done so many things right; they’re too many to mention here. However, a couple of things really stand out to me. One is its understanding of customers now and well into the future —a  stark contrast to the American car companies that lost to Japan because they didn’t talk to the consumer. Or if they did, they didn’t listen. Apple has and does listen. Not only that, they extrapolate into the future and build a vision for new products that breaks the previous mold and get folks so excited they’re willing to give up sleep and wait in long lines to get their hands on the latest device. Secondly, Apple is really smart in its marketing communications. We’ve known that Steve Jobs has been ill for some time and while some criticized Apple for not being as transparent regarding Steve’s health as they thought it should, Apple stayed the course and unveiled news when the most appropriate for Steve (and the company). The latest news was shocking but not unexpected and we all wish Steve Jobs the best. The pundits went on to say how the stock was going to tank, yadda, yadda. As of this post, Apple stock is up nearly $10 per share.  Apple was prepared and has let us know more about Steve’s replacement, Tim Cook. And now it is pulling the curtain back even further and we’re learning about Apple’s head designer and creative talent, Jonathan Ive. (See AP story: Behind Apple’s products is longtime designer Ive http://yhoo.it/o9JvHi )

Instead of retreating from the bad news and going around in circles not knowing what to do  – as too often companies do when faced with adversity ­­–  Apple has taken it head on with a communications strategy that matches its products – brilliant.

Happy Marketing!

PJ Jennings

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