Apple's biggest problem

bpd115

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Feb 4, 2003
808
42
Pennsylvania
I was on a local computer show's discussion board and suggested they do a show showcasing what Mac OS X can do as an alternative to the ever growing frustrations with Windows..

one of the replies was "Apple's are far more expensive for what you get compaired to a Windows Machine"...to which I fired back with the build quailty, iLife, total cost of ownership etc etc.

It got me thinking that Apple's biggest issue is misconception. I live in a small town in NE PA...while we aren't Farm Land, we're no NYC and the same goes for the surrounding areas. Both NY and Philly are about an hour and a half away so we don't have Apple Store's around the corner. People here simply don't know what OS X can do and after I bought one, my entire family is almost totally switched.

The general public thinks Macs are too expensive (Mini!!), incompatible with PCs file formats (when Apple actually adhears to standards better than Windows) etc etc.

Apple is changing this slowly with the iPod and the Mini but I think they really should push Tiger with a marketing blitz.....

ok, discuss! :p
 

Blue Velvet

Moderator emeritus
Jul 4, 2004
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Apple's advertising is a complete mystery to me.

Maybe they think that a combination of AppleStores, iPods etc, and keen Mac enthusiasts will help them towards that tipping point where things might really take off...

Here in the UK, nothing about the Mini. In the lead-up to Xmas I even saw a TV campaign for Acrobat, for god sakes... let alone all the HP ones.

I think that the 'Think Different' campaign was one of the most obscure, wilfully elitest campaigns I have ever seen. What exactly was that supposed to tell the average consumer? :confused:
 

edesignuk

Moderator emeritus
Mar 25, 2002
19,077
1
London, England
Yeah, their advertising sucks...almost as much as their ability to actually get products out the door and delivered to people in any reasonable time frame :rolleyes:
 

Daveway

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Jul 10, 2004
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New Orleans / Lafayette, La
Apple is just stubborn with the iPod. They flood our TVs with silhouette ads but never say anything about Mac. Microsoft advertises all the time. Whenever on this topic I always come to the conclusion that Apple really does not want market share and are more than happy with their 4%. In the end it affects the consumer and that is wrong.
 

maya

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Oct 7, 2004
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Blue Velvet said:
Apple's advertising is a complete mystery to me.

Maybe they think that a combination of AppleStores, iPods etc, and keen Mac enthusiasts will help them towards that tipping point where things might really take off...

Here in the UK, nothing about the Mini. In the lead-up to Xmas I even saw a TV campaign for Acrobat, for god sakes... let alone all the HP ones.

I think that the 'Think Different' campaign was one of the most obscure, wilfully elitest campaigns I have ever seen. What exactly was that supposed to tell the average consumer? :confused:
Steve Jobs and Apple board feels that the stores make a far better impact then tv ads. Reason being people think "oh its another OS, only prettier", big deal and then the thought of cost comes to mind. All this in a short time frame without thinking or having trying it out in person.

You appreciate a car by test driving it, not solely by look at commercials and saying wow I want it, you say that look interesting now lets take it for a test drive before investing in it. No point of advertising when the iPod, and Apple fans do it for them. ;) :)

Quite smart indeed if you think about it. ;) :)

Apple gets FREE word of mouth advertising and that is the best advertising there is. Can you imagine how many companies would want that kind of support, ALL. Word of Mouth is far greater advertising then anything other, who do you trust more your family and friends or some $$$ commercial. :)

Apple is Very Smart in this regard. ;) :)
 

maya

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Oct 7, 2004
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edesignuk said:
Yeah, their advertising sucks...almost as much as their ability to actually get products out the door and delivered to people in any reasonable time frame :rolleyes:
You miss the point of Apple advertising, I have taken marketing and I can tell you for a fact that "Word of Mouth" advertising is the holy grail of all advertising.

The shipping of new products is another issue, kinda sucks I have not even seen a Shuffle or Mini in Canada yet. :(
 

maya

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Oct 7, 2004
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daveway00 said:
Apple is just stubborn with the iPod. They flood our TVs with silhouette ads but never say anything about Mac. Microsoft advertises all the time. Whenever on this topic I always come to the conclusion that Apple really does not want market share and are more than happy with their 4%. In the end it affects the consumer and that is wrong.
The only reason Apple has iPod ads, is to fuel the ever growing positive momentum of its product. To keep people reminded, and refresh they memory. That is all, once people buy any iPod they recommend it to they family and friends. And the next thing you know they are visiting an Apple Retail or Online Store. ;) :)

Apple's advertising is brilliant. :)
 

Blue Velvet

Moderator emeritus
Jul 4, 2004
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Yes, but...

A certain level of TV advertising would increase awareness – it doesn't need to educate...

Just read the Mac-hater thread to see the level of ignorance.
 

Blue Velvet

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Jul 4, 2004
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maya said:
I have taken marketing...
I have worked in marketing and advertising.
Apple's advertising is not brilliant, good but not brilliant and far too patchy except for those damned iPods...
 

abhishekit

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Nov 6, 2003
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akron , ohio
^^^^ well not really.
The Apple fan base (although ritualistic) is pretty small. So there is a limit to the word of mouth spread.
I agree with the first post that there is almost no awareness about the goods of OS X among general users. There are a lot of people who have never used a mac. Then why would they spend more money if they don't know the benefits.
Even the new windows iPod crowd mostly knows about iLife and not about the stability and ease of use of OS X.
 

jeremy.king

macrumors 603
Jul 23, 2002
5,478
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Fuquay Varina, NC
I would hardly say that a 25+ year old company thats profitable with more than $4 billion in cash has any issues, as you say.

Perhaps they don't want their computers to become mainstream, perhaps they are happy with the slow and steady growth over the past few years, perhaps you misunderstand Apple's objectives...perhaps.

Yes, I agree there is a misconception of Apple's offerings, but who cares. The company is doing very well and as long as they continue to please me with all their cool technology, I don't give a rat's tail that my neighbor thinks they suck cause they "crash all the time."

Also, as the misconception goes the other way too. Too many Apple fanatics bash Windows because they don't understand what it can/can't do or they are mislead by the media...

Hows that for discussion? ;)
 

Chubypig

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Aug 30, 2004
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When I was walking past the apple store in DC this fall I heard the people behind me say: "That's the Apple store, remember those?" and his buddy responded: "I didn't even know they still made those!" I was shocked that somebody wouldn't even know apple existed.
 

maya

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Oct 7, 2004
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Blue Velvet said:
Yes, but...

A certain level of TV advertising would increase awareness – it doesn't need to educate...

Just read the Mac-hater thread to see the level of ignorance.
There is always some level of ignorance may it be Windows, Linux, Irix, Mac OS, etc....

A certain level of TV ads, Yes. Its called iPod commercials. :)

Telling people that Mac OS X, is better via a TV ad will only bring up the elitist argument and $$$. ;) :)
 

maya

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Blue Velvet said:
I have worked in marketing and advertising.
Apple's advertising is not brilliant, good but not brilliant and far too patchy except for those damned iPods...
Doesn't have to be the best as far as convention goes, every market requires a twist in every area of they business, and this is Apples twist in advertising.

They have TV ads in the past with they hardware line and also a small peek of OS X in those ads. However it didn't help them then and they say it as such, thus the retail store route. :)

They would not do it if it wasn't affective, its best to experience something and say WOW then just see it on the tele. :)
 

Blue Velvet

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Jul 4, 2004
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maya said:
Telling people that Mac OS X, is better via a TV ad will only bring up the elitist argument and $$$. ;) :)
If that's what your marketing course has taught you about advertising then stick with the day job :D :p

Something more like the hp spots with iLife & the Mini or iMac would do the trick – gets people thinking about visiting a store.
 

maya

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abhishekit said:
^^^^ well not really.
The Apple fan base (although ritualistic) is pretty small. So there is a limit to the word of mouth spread.
I agree with the first post that there is almost no awareness about the goods of OS X among general users. There are a lot of people who have never used a mac. Then why would they spend more money if they don't know the benefits.
Even the new windows iPod crowd mostly knows about iLife and not about the stability and ease of use of OS X.
You care forgetting its a DIEHARD fan base. ;) :)

Which hardware company would not love this DIEHARD fan base, last time I checked someone didn't say "dude, you are getting a Dell" other than in the stupid Dell commercials. Or "dude, you are using Windows XP". :rolleyes:

Small yet Strong. ;) :)
 

maya

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Blue Velvet said:
If that's what your marketing course has taught you about advertising then stick with the day job :D :p

Something more like the hp spots with iLife & the Mini or iMac would do the trick – gets people thinking about visiting a store.
ROTF, no my course taught me that "Word of Mouth" is far better then any $$$ commercial. ;) :) <--- you sure you worked in the advertising business. :)


They used to advertise the line back in the days, however it got them nowhere, that is why there is a change to the retail stores. I do not go shopping for clothes and shoes without feeling it or trying it on.

You convince people with trying it out rather then flash and boom ads. :)
 

maya

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Chubypig said:
When I was walking past the apple store in DC this fall I heard the people behind me say: "That's the Apple store, remember those?" and his buddy responded: "I didn't even know they still made those!" I was shocked that somebody wouldn't even know apple existed.

I am sure your friend is non tech person. People in the tech industry know all the competing companies, hardware, software.

They use x86 and Windows at work for business so that is all they are exposed to on a daily basis. ;) :)
 

maya

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kingjr3 said:
I would hardly say that a 25+ year old company thats profitable with more than $4 billion in cash has any issues, as you say.

Perhaps they don't want their computers to become mainstream, perhaps they are happy with the slow and steady growth over the past few years, perhaps you misunderstand Apple's objectives...perhaps.

Yes, I agree there is a misconception of Apple's offerings, but who cares. The company is doing very well and as long as they continue to please me with all their cool technology, I don't give a rat's tail that my neighbor thinks they suck cause they "crash all the time."

Also, as the misconception goes the other way too. Too many Apple fanatics bash Windows because they don't understand what it can/can't do or they are mislead by the media...

Hows that for discussion? ;)

I like the elitist argument, its a lot like the expensive sports car argument. ;) :)

That is just the devil in me talking. :: devil horns, evil smile ::
 

Blue Velvet

Moderator emeritus
Jul 4, 2004
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Chubypig said:
When I was walking past the apple store in DC this fall I heard the people behind me say: "That's the Apple store, remember those?" and his buddy responded: "I didn't even know they still made those!" I was shocked that somebody wouldn't even know apple existed.

That's the problem in a nutshell.

Huge swathes of the population have ZERO awareness... it's going to take a little more than word of mouth to reach those people.
 

Mav451

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Jul 1, 2003
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Maryland
Blue Velvet said:
That's the problem in a nutshell.

Huge swathes of the population have ZERO awareness... it's going to take a little more than word of mouth to reach those people.
And this is where Apple's advertising department should come in. Enough with the iPods already. I want one, and its not b/c of that stupid commercial. Its time to advertise its software/hardware more than something that people ALREADY WANT.
 

maya

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Oct 7, 2004
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Blue Velvet said:
That's the problem in a nutshell.

Huge swathes of the population have ZERO awareness... it's going to take a little more than word of mouth to reach those people.
Huge swathes of the population also have been using and seeing Windows and IBM computers for most of they working life. And this was during the dark days of Apple. Apple has a long way to go to catch up and they are taking baby steps. They might start advertising once Tiger is released, however I have my reason as to why that will not happen.

If you ask any tech person or someone in the creative or educational field they know Apple, and Apple is best to start educating the younger generations who are future customers, not people well stuck in they old hard pressed ways. Thus the iPod factor. ;) :)

Apple is in survival mode at present, cannot make risky moves. :)
 

maya

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Mav451 said:
And this is where Apple's advertising department should come in. Enough with the iPods already. I want one, and its not b/c of that stupid commercial. Its time to advertise its software/hardware more than something that people ALREADY WANT.
Sure you can advertise iLife in 15-30 seconds on TV, and then you have the argument is this also available for windows or there is a close alternative on the windows side. Look left on the desk I see a windows box there, why do I need a Mac for that when I have already invested $$$ in software and hardware on that PC, I am sure I can fine an iLife replacement for free if not less, or get someone else to do it. :rolleyes:

That is a windows user analogy, if I cannot do it get someone else to do it. ;) :)
 

mrgreen4242

macrumors 601
Feb 10, 2004
4,352
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Remember the eMac comercials from the 90's, where they show that little kid and his dog setting up an eMac and getting online and a guy putting together a PC desktop in a split screen, and the iMac was hooked up and online in like 4 minutes and the PC went on for like 15+ minutes?

Ok, they need to bring that concept back, only with iLife. Do a time comparison with some basic multimedia type tasks... like show someone plugging a digital camera into an iMac and watch it launch iPhoto, copy the pictures over everything while the user drinks some coffee or something. In a split screen show someone trying to do it with whatever software Dells ships.

Another good one would be to demonstrate iMovie '05's new quick import/burn to DVD process in comparison with whatever generic PC software there is out there.

That would be an effective advertising campaign... showing people what you can DO with a Mac and the software that comes with it right in the ad will bring people into the stores to try it out, and after that you know you have to get one.

Rob
 

Blue Velvet

Moderator emeritus
Jul 4, 2004
21,652
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mrgreen4242 said:
Remember the eMac comercials from the 90's, where they show that little kid and his dog setting up an eMac and getting online and a guy putting together a PC desktop in a split screen, and the iMac was hooked up and online in like 4 minutes and the PC went on for like 15+ minutes?

Ok, they need to bring that concept back, only with iLife. Do a time comparison with some basic multimedia type tasks... like show someone plugging a digital camera into an iMac and watch it launch iPhoto, copy the pictures over everything while the user drinks some coffee or something. In a split screen show someone trying to do it with whatever software Dells ships.

Another good one would be to demonstrate iMovie '05's new quick import/burn to DVD process in comparison with whatever generic PC software there is out there.

That would be an effective advertising campaign... showing people what you can DO with a Mac and the software that comes with it right in the ad will bring people into the stores to try it out, and after that you know you have to get one.

Rob

No. No split screens, no comparisons... pure Apple -- 30 secs is too short a time to complicate it with stuff like that. Think more like the hp ads...