By Jane Atkinson Student ID: 213438614 WordPress User Name : jmatkins68
Apple is far beyond a product, a brand, it’s a global institution; with its own personality, focusing on customer’s emotions, passions and creativity.
Apple has cultivated a strong brand personality based on the ideas of nonconformity, innovation, and creativity. (Fitzsimons, et al., 2008, p. 24).
Advertising campaigns such as “If it’s not an iPhone, it’s not an iPhone” or “Here’s to those who have always seen things differently” associate these personality traits.
Apple’s personality is associated to brand attributes such as ‘sleek’, ‘cool’, ‘fun’, ‘groovy’ ‘colourful’. An example of such is the iPod advertising using the “silhouette” themed marketing.
Apple’s branding associations; “which are intangible cognitive and emotional attributes connecting the customer to the brand”, (Iacobucci, 2014, p. 79) is simple.
The simplicity of Apple’s ‘Taylor vs. Treadmill’ advertisement, depicting Taylor Swift falling off a treadmill, not only has created abstract product benefits but also a co-branding alliance, which implies symmetry between more than one provider. (Iacobucci, 2014, p. 85) Apple has linked not only with Taylor but also to the artist Drake, turning the “Drake song “Jumpman” into a worldwide phenomenon”.
Apple’s brand success is evident in their financials; in 2015 Apple enjoyed their most successful year, with revenue growing 28% to nearly U$234 billion, with international sales attributing to over 60% of the revenue growth and their share price increasing a staggering 38%.
Apple’s success in the global ‘Smartphone’ market has elevated their brand to new levels. Their market share growth from 2014 to 2015 is 20.20% mainly due to demand in the USA and China markets, and from a combination of new innovative features and better performance.
From a brand architecture viewpoint, Apple maintains an umbrella brand identity with their products being associated with the Apple name; iPhone, iPad, iPod. Furthermore they have brand extensions within these products; the iPod alone has many variants. (Iacobucci, 2014, p. 83).
The success of Apple’s umbrella brands is attributed to their customer’s strong brand loyalty. A visit to anyone of their 463 global stores demonstrates this strong customer attraction and loyalty, notwithstanding the enormous anticipation for new product launches.
Think Value- Add
Apple has defined itself more broadly than being just a company selling personal computing or smart phones, by offering value-added products and services such as Apple Music, iTunes, iBooks, Siri, that complement these core product offerings. This provides a customer value proposition with all services and functionalities accessible on any device.
Yet their product mix breadth and depth goes beyond these core and value-add products, extending to services such as Apple Renew and the Care Kit App.
On 21st March 2016 Apple not only launched their new products but announced new environmental initiatives addressing a growing global demand for “eco-friendly” or greener products and services.
Their global footprint is now operating at 93% renewable energy and 99% of packaging comes from sustainable managed forest or recycled paper.
Apple, also launched a new R&D project called Liam. Liam is a robot designed to take apart the old devices that cannot be reused or recycled. Liam detects the parts and precious metals within these devices, strips them out so they can be refurbished or reused.
Apple Renew service has evolved from this R&D project. This service enables customers to recycle their old devices easily, by either taking them to a local Apple store or requesting online, a prepaid postal service. The customer incentive is a gift card for qualified devices.
Apple being an “eco-friendly” company has added value to their brand.
Customers “will aspire to buy eco‐friendly alternatives for products that generate a high level of environmental impact”. (Rahbar & Wahid , 2011).
Well done Apple.
Apple “Think Different”, they certainly do!
- Fitzsimons, G. M., Chartrand, T. L. & Fitzsimons, G. J., 2008. Journal of Consumer Research: Automatic Effects of Brand Exposure on Motivated Behavior: How Apple Makes You “Think Different”. [Online] Available at: http://jcr.oxfordjournals.org.ezproxy-b.deakin.edu.au/content/35/1/21 [Accessed 19 April 2016].
- Iacobucci, D., 2014. Marketing Management. 4th ed. Mason: South-Western, Cengage Learning.
- Rahbar , E. & Wahid , N. A., 2011. Business Strategy Series: Investigation of green marketing tools’ effect on consumers’ purchase behavior. [Online] Available at: http://www.emeraldinsight.com.ezproxy-b.deakin.edu.au/doi/full/10.1108/17515631111114877 [Accessed 20 April 2016].