When Apple Computer Inc. was started in 1977, its investor advisor and the second CEO Mike Markkula gave a three point marketing philosophy. Even after a span of thirty seven years, the same philosophy is the core marketing strategy, which is serving best for the company effectively in creating loyal customers. This is what Apple’s strong marketing capability. Apple marketing philosophy has the vital factor which has driven the company to be the leader in the tech market. The moment Apple came into the market, it is known to be a leader in its niche. And it has been fighting hard to keep it. While most of the businesses thrive upon giving a cutting edge competition to others in the market, Apple dared to be different as it has known that only quality work could make it a market giant. And that’s what made Apple a top dog globally in the global mobile market. Apple has three main marketing strategic factors for which it works carefully, which are known as “Apple Marketing Philosophy” written by Mike Markkula.
Apple Marketing Philosophy
Empathy: For Apple, customer’s needs are always in focus. Apple truly understands its customer’s needs than any other company. Mr. Markkula declared, “We will truly understand their needs better than any other company.” That was when Apple actually even had to costumers. It was just initiation phase. Capturing customer’s attention in this way led a way of success for the company.
Focus: Steve Job’s design philosophy includes, “In order to do a good job of the things we decide to do, we must eliminate all the unimportant opportunities.”
Impute: People always judge a book by its cover. They frame opinions regarding a company on the basis of the signals that it conveys. Mr. Markkula said, “People do judge a book with its cover. We may have the best product, the highest quality, the most useful software, if we present them in a slipshod manner, they will be perceived as slipshod, if we present them in a creating and professional manner, we will impute the desired qualities.”
Steve Jobs was best known for his marketing strategies and entrepreneurship. According to him the electronic devices should not be foreboding, they should be friendly. Macintosh had smiling icon, Mac Smile. Steve Jobs knew how people would interact with the technology. He referred to Henry Ford in this insight. Henry Ford once said, “If I had asked people what they wanted, they would’ve said faster horses.” This simple quote made Jobs think more about the customer’s experiences more than the customer. Apple invests most of its resources in observing the customer’s experiences using Apple’s technologies and others companies technologies. Apple uses this observation in its product design and development. There is a famous saying that engineers and business men have a parallel ways, while an engineer wants to work on challenging projects with innovation on the other side businessmen focus on the making money and profit. And sometimes this even creates light tensions between the two. Before iPod there were MP3 players. But iPod was launched with ‘1000 songs in your pocket’ which captured customers. There were Smartphones before Apple’s but when Apple’s Smartphones were introduced into the market; it gave challenges to the others. As Steve Jobs mentioned, “Our innovation is to distill those products down to their fundamental purposes. We make progress by eliminating things.”
From the very beginning, Apple has kept its main focus on a friendly customer experience. That’s why the products, services and the devices are always delightful, different and friendly for the customers. The core of every product is to remove any complexity while using the product. This led to the easy to use and innovative feature such as the gestures touchscreen, a personal assistant SIRI. This builds a compatible experience with customers. Apple introduced its products to be digital hub as well as entertainment hub. The design that these devices are made with are customer compatible. One more key strategy that Apple focused on is to create a passionate brand community of fans who identify with company’s brand values. With its base innovation and customer experiences, Apple has been able to develop a positive response from its customer in the whole global market, with its focus on cool, friendly upmarketing.
According to Tim Cook, the present CEO of the company, “We never had an objective to sell a low cost phone. Our primary objective is to sell a great phone and provide a good experience and we figured out a way to do it at a lower cost.” Steve Jobs had four strategic pillars:
- Offer a small number of products
- Give priority to profits over the market share
- Create a halo effect that makes people stave for new Apple Product
- Focus on high end
It is common that the company’s product price is always very high. The company is well known for its pricing strategy. In the initial phases, Jobs noticed that the market is already captured with its competitor like HP. Keeping a high price strategy could invite many challenges and risks for the product. But Jobs had a different notion in this case. He designed the product’s pricing in such a way that it matched with the product. Customer’s in no way thought that the price that they are giving for the product is higher. The core concept was to get a good customer response which Apple succeeded with. And when the customers were satisfied with the product and the services offered, they were ready to pay for it. As the company started growing, it became the centre of attraction in the market. Apple has always attempted to increase the market demands through differentiation. This technique resulted in designing unique and attractive products. Though Apple has to face a fierce competition in the marketing by many other computer giants, Apple has remained successful in creating its product demands, which has giving power to the prices with help of product differentiation. Apple uses innovating advertising, ensured brand loyalty and hype for the new launching. Jobs gave a vision to the company, ‘create a premier product and charge a premium price.’ The price of the products always matches with the facilities they offer to the customers which add a healthy and positive customer experience for the company. Apple’s marketing strategies proved out to be the world’s best marketing strategies which have made Apple a Tech Giant. Apple’s branding strategy focuses on the emotions. The experience with the products makes customer feel different.
According to Forbes, Apple is the most valuable company in the market.