How Apple use promotion
A different take from a different brand at the promotional mix.
Apple: the largest company in the world, the first company to have a valuation of a trillion dollars, the company most likely responsible for the device in your hand now.
Apple are dominant, if you have not heard of Apple by now then you have been living under a very substantial rock for most of your life and part of the reason you have heard of them is their marketing and promotion.
They may not shout everything from the rooftops and are rather adverse to a discount but they still promote their enterprise at great length and without it would not be half as successful nor have created arguably one of the greatest adverts of all time.
For me, Apple are a very interesting example of how a company uses the promotional mix and this is how they do it…
One of the most notable elements of Apple’s promotion is their use of advertising. Most people will have seen an Apple advert on TV about the new features of their products but in a jazzy way in order to not bore people with a spec sheet.
A particularly interesting example is their 1984 advert in the break during the Super Bowl which truly put Apple and their computers on the map as people began to learn the significance of the company that would ultimately go on to take over the world of consumer electronics (with a few professional bits along the way).
For me, one of the most interesting bits of Apple’s promotional mix is their use of sales promotion.
Apple are a brand with a distinctly premium image and therefore do not have a discount sale on every other week nor do they do massive price reductions on their products.
The only regular promotion they do is an offer of free AirPods or a gift voucher for students every summer. To me, this is rather clever as it attracts impressionable young people into the Apple ecosystem who are likely to buy their products in the future while also not devaluing Apple’s premium image - very, very impressive.
A brillaint aspect of Apple is their beautiful stores, they are temples of technology and a joy to visit even if you do not actually need to buy anything but a point to note is the lack of tills or cash registers.
If you want to make a purchase you need to speak to a staff member who will process the transaction personally. This allows them to try and upsell you things: do you need a charger? AppleCare? A case for that new phone? Whatever it is, they will try and sell you an add-on which is very much personal selling.
A key part of building a level of excitement around Apple’s brand is the way they interact with the press and public when they launch new products either hardware or software.
The highlights of the Apple calendar are the Worldwide Developers’ Conference (where new software and computers are announced) with the Apple Event in autumn being the release of new iPhones and other small devices.
These events do a great job in generating attention around the brand, every time one of these occurs Apple are trending on social media while millions of people stream the events at home while the slick presentation encourages them that the latest upgrades to the new iPhone are most certainly worth the extra cost.
Many don’t associate Apple with marketing as much as their competitors as they do not do a great deal on social media nor do they bombard their customers with emails yet they still are very, very effective. Some of the methods they use are not all that common but if it works, does it really matter?