Post # 4: Think Different

In this day and age, marketing is everywhere, from logos on water bottles to advertisements on blog pages.  Consumers are beginning to become numb to these advertising efforts, and standard marketing tactics are moving toward obsolescence.  Because of this shift in the marketing industry, commercials that highlight brands rather than products are increasing in popularity.

Modern consumers want to showcase their individuality and celebrate their ability to express themselves through social media platforms. Advertisements and marketing campaigns that build upon this idea are particularly effective.  To reflect this, Apple recently revamped commercial from 1997 in memorial of Steve Jobs.  The commercial features black and white footage of rebellious icons such as Albert Einstein, Martin Luther King, Jr., Pablo Picasso, and John Lennon.  Richard Dreyfuss narrates:

“Here’s to the crazy ones: the misfits; the rebels; troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules, and they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.”

The advertisement does not mention any Apple products or comparisons to other brands.  There is little indication of the brand behind the commercial at all. At the end of the ad, “Think different” appears in writing, and Apple’s rainbow logo silently appears above the text before the commercial fades to black.  This subtle indication of the brand behind the message is powerful because it shows consumers the mindset behind the brand.

The Steve Jobs version of the Think Different commercial is virtually the same as the original.  This commercial never aired on television, but it was made available online after the death of the CEO.  These commercials cover a wide demographic, which encompasses ages 7 and up.  The ad tells a compelling story, which is relevant to every individual.  The target market is not exclusive to tech-savvy people, because it communicates Apple’s brand mentality rather than focusing on products.  Apple is extremely clear about how the corporation wants to be perceived by customers.  This commercial shows consumers that the brand is relatable, accepting, rebellious, and full of vitality.  The ad communicates that the brand is a cut above competitors because it recognizes the importance of individual differences.

Post # 2: My Portable Life

My favorite personal object is my laptop.  I own a 2011 15” Macbook Pro, which is made by Apple, Inc.  This laptop was gently used when I purchased it through a Craigslist seller, so it has minor cosmetic flaws.  In my opinion, these flaws are far outweighed by it’s 8 GB memory and 2.4 GHz processor.  In addition, the laptop is equipped with Final Cut Pro 7 and Adobe Creative Suite 5 Master Collection, which includes software such as Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, and Bridge.

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Thus far, the only other Apple product I own is the iPod classic.  Eventually, I hope to have an iPhone and an iPad, which sync with other personal Apple devices via iCloud.  Apple’s reputation for innovative technology and sleek design, combined with a strong commitment to customer loyalty play key roles in the brand’s success.  For example, customers can make appointments with employees at Apple stores to determine the best product for their needs.  Apple employees will even review used Apple products before a consumer decides to purchase a new or used item.  Although I strongly prefer Apple’s products and services for technology-based items over competitors’ brands, the price tag for new products is staggering.  Economically, it made more sense for me to purchase this laptop used because I am a college student with a minimum wage job.  I purchased this computer with preloaded software for $1,049.  When I calculated the total cost of purchasing this laptop new, plus the cost of the Adobe and Microsoft software, the total came to $5,153.

Apple markets this product through both digital and print platforms.  When Macbooks were brand new on the market, they were heavily featured in television commercials.    Today, they are not featured on television as often, as iPads and iPhones have recently dominated  Apple’s consumer market.  Print Macbook advertisements frequently appear in magazines, especially in trade publications for art and graphic design.  While consumers continue the “Mac versus PC” debate, I have found that Apple computers are unmatched by PCs in their consistently fast performance.

Before this laptop, I owned a Lenovo brand PC with a Windows 7 operating system, which ran quite slowly.  The performance was so poor that I actually grew to resent the inanimate object.  In contrast, my Macbook is equipped with the new Mountain Lion operating system, and I greatly appreciate how efficiently it runs.  For example, when it is set it to “sleep” mode, I can open the screen and the computer wakes up immediately without start-up delays.  With my old PC, starting up Windows often took between 5 and 15 minutes, and I frequently had to restart it in order to install software updates.  It ran slowly, and the screen would freeze if I had more than one window open at a time.  On my Macbook, I can  run multiple programs at once without enduring slow performance issues.  This is especially important for my social media marketing internship, because I need to access the internet and Adobe Photoshop simultaneously.  The 15″ screen size allows me to keep several windows open and view them easily with one glance.