Now that Steve Jobs has stepped down at Apple, the wolves are at the door with all the reasons why Apple won’t succeed without him.
Bob Hoffman writes on The Ad Contrarian the five warning signs that Apple has lost its way:
1. Creeping Brandism: The Apple brand was built bottom-up. That is, the products defined the brand. Virtually every Apple ad was about a product, not the brand (okay, there was “Think Different” but that didn’t last.) Keep an eye out for the erosion of this discipline.
2. Agency change: Vapid marketing people relegated to the background all these years by Jobs’ dominance may suddenly start flexing. They wouldn’t dare contradict Jobs’ legacy, but they could accomplish the same thing by undermining the agency.
3. The Tortured Logic of Account Planning: Look for ads about you the consumer instead of Apple products. Look for moronic online “engagement” gimmicks. Or look for social media pandering.
4. Complications: Part of the brilliance of Apple advertising has been its simplicity. Keep an eye out for complicated ideas or ads with more than one product.
5. Media: Apple has used online media sparingly. The preponderance of its advertising has been conducted in traditional media — TV, print, and outdoor. Watch to see if Apple suddenly starts going all trendy and new age in its media choices.
Julian Lee says Steve Jobs made Apple a ruthless corporate machine that exploits consumers.
In spite of all the facts – that Apple is a ruthless corporate machine that exploits consumers at will and gives little back (it doesn’t even pay its shareholders a dividend) – we love this brand and the avuncular evangelist Jobs who is slowly but surely being raised to the pantheon of ”greats” alongside Nobel prize winners, mighty philanthropists and, dare I say it, even religious leaders. In the end I suspect Jobs will be remembered chiefly as one of, if not the, best marketers the world has ever known.
And, in the end, one sheep leaves the fold. Hajo Schumacker on Spiegel Online:
The iPad is for show-offs. And the iPhone 4 makes it difficult to make a simple telephone call. Apple used to be hip, stylish and ahead of the curve. Now, though, it has become totally uncool — and not just since Steve Jobs stepped down.The iPad has attained the social cachet once enjoyed by things like color TVs and inline skates. It’s almost like you can hear its owners shouting triumphantly: ‘I’m hip! I’m in front! And I can afford it, too!’
What do the trio of fools have in common? They’ve each created an article that borders on and crosses ridiculousness in a number of areas. Why? Because that’s 21st century journalism. Come up with a crazy-assed premise and sell it to the world online? Why? Because the more eyeballs visit their pages, the more money they get.