You may wonder: how can you apply Apple’s marketing ideas to your own small or medium sized company? They are this huge, iconic corporation, with millions of dollars available for marketing and advertising. How can your company ever replicate their strategies? Yet, we encourage you to keep reading. You will find out that these inspirational marketing ideas, working so well for Apple, can work for your business, as well.
Why Look Up to Apple for Inspiration?
Apple is probably one of the most innovative companies in the world. Started by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak in a garage, Apple has revolutionised the personal computer, the portable music player, and the mobile phone. The first Mac computer models, handmade by Jobs and Wozniak, are now valuable collector pieces, selling for hundreds of thousands of US dollars.
Apple has always been one step ahead of everyone else in terms of vision and innovation. These concepts apply not only to their product, but also to everything the company does, including its marketing strategy. These, in short, are the reasons why you should emulate Apple’s inspirational marketing ideas.
How to Do Digital Marketing Apple Style
Without any further introductions, these are some of the most relevant and inspirational marketing ideas that you can borrow from Apple and adapt to your own business:
1. Less Is More (or Simplicity Is Everything)
Leonardo da Vinci said “simplicity is the ultimate sophistication”. And Apple follows this rule almost religiously. Their products have a clean and simple design. In fact, Apple reinvented minimalism in hi tech products design. Their marketing and sales copy is also simple.
You won’t see references to processing power, millions of pixels and other technology jargon in product descriptions. Everything is about how using the product makes your life better. Simple words, speaking to everyone, and stirring their interests – this is one of the inspirational marketing ideas you can adopt.
Don’t try to sound smarter than your competitors – be the source of information people can always revert to when others’ copy confuses them.
2. Focus on the Unique Selling Proposition, Not the Price
Are you tempted to join the price war, slashing your margins just to give clients a better deal? Apple never did that, not even during the worst economic crisis. Yet, people still preferred Apple products over cheaper brands. Why?
The reason is that Apple excels at focusing on their unique selling proposition: innovation and uncompromising quality. These are values that weigh a lot in the consumer’s mind. Between a cheap product that needs constant repairs and has a short lifespan and an expensive but reliable product, they will choose the second option.
Do the same. Find what makes your products and services different and make it the top reason why customers should choose your company.
3. Find Opportunities for Product Placement
Apple products are everywhere, from Hollywood films, to music videos and top influencers’ Instagram reels. The company has worked on endorsement deals relentlessly in the past. Now, they don’t even have to ask influencers and film stars to showcase their iPhones or Mac laptops – they do it as a matter of course.
While the other inspirational marketing ideas so far appear feasible, how do you apply this one? You don’t exactly have Angelina Jolie or Madonna on your speed dial. The answer is: you work with local influencers in your area: bloggers, vloggers, product review forums and platforms.
4. Focus on Emotions in Visual Content
Marketing photos and videos created by Apple never show the product in the foreground. It is never the star of the show. Instead, the visuals focus on the emotions people experience while using them. We see friends snapping a selfie at a concert, a proud dad filming his kids at the beach, or emotional family reunions through a video call on Facetime. The fact that everyone uses Apple products to experience these emotions is implicit.
This is probably one of the most inspirational marketing ideas for any company. Products are rarely super unique to stand out on their own. What makes them special is the joy or the comfort they bring people when using them. Focus on this, and you will attract more customers to your store.
5. Use the Right Marketing Channels
Apple could be everywhere: in your mailbox, on your TV screen, on the radio, in the local newspaper…They certainly afford to buy any kind of advertising space. Yet, you can find Apple ads and marketing materials only on select channels. These are the channels used by most of their customers.
Here is one of the money saving inspirational marketing ideas you can borrow from Apple: know what kind of online channels your customers use and focus on them. Do not waste time and money on advertising and marketing that does not work and is not likely to work in the future.
6. Create Experiences, Not Just Products
Have you watched on TV those endless queues to buy the latest iPhone? Some people wait for 2-3 days, sleeping in front of the store in sleeping bags. It seems a little crazy, right? Yet, it is not so crazy.
Apple conferences and product launches feel like rock concerts. Each new feature added to a product is presented like the discovery of a new sun. Apple knows how to turn even the most practical aspect of their manufacturing, launching and marketing into a memorable experience. With a little effort to think outside the box, you can do the same thing for your products and services, albeit at a smaller scale.
7. Be a Champion for Data Protection and Privacy
If you remember, some years ago Apple famously refused to comply with an FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigations) order to give them the algorithm to unlock a murder suspect’s iPhone. The company’s argument was that this would give the FBI access to the phones of millions of innocent people, and their privacy weighed more than any information stored on the suspect’s phone.
More recently, Apple has banned from its app store all the apps that try to track users with cookies, thus cutting digital advertisers’ access to user data. Now, digital marketers must comply with strict data protection and privacy rules in order to reach customers on Apple devices.
We left this one at the end of our list of inspirational marketing ideas to borrow from Apple, because it is one of the most important aspects for any business. Consumers are more worried than ever about who has access to their personal data, even if it is just their email address. You must enforce clear data protection rules and explain them to your clients in simple terms that they can understand. It is the only way of winning their trust right now and in the future.
You thought that you could not adopt any of the inspirational marketing ideas that Apple uses before you started reading this article. Now you see that it is not about spending millions of dollars, but creating a valuable brand, caring about your customers and offering them high quality products. These are universal values which any company should adopt from its first day in business.