#BrandTalkWithLamide: I have found Apple’s Biggest Secret…No, its not the latest X series nor any of their gadgets
For as long as I can remember, I have been a fan of android gadgets and this is for no particular reason, at least none that I can think of. Every time I thought to up my game and climb the apple tree, I am quickly discouraged, mostly by the fact that my friends who are already on the tree, are unable to convince me, instead they are quick to brandish their airpods, tease me with the face time app, iMessenger and iCloud features, nothing but these basic stuff and for those who know me know I am too strong willed to be swayed by such, or so I like to think.
So last week, during one of my window shopping expeditions at Ikeja City Mall, I strolled into the Apple store to ask questions or maybe take a few selfies. The minute I stepped in, one of the staff, after the usual exchange of pleasantries led me to the several products they had in store smiling sheepishly as we strolled, as though expecting me to say exactly what I wanted but clueless me didn’t.
After a few minutes though, I caught sight of a rose gold iPhone 8 and in that instant, she left me by myself, not after courteously requesting my permission though. I soon realised, after about thirty minutes of fumbling with the device that I had to join the bandwagon and this was because the brand did one thing;
Just one simple thing!
The brand made me feel like I made the decision all by myself.
And no it was not a trick. I was helped to feel like a king and made to believe that should I decide to make the purchase decision, it would be one I made all by myself and not sweet talked into.
And voila, I not only left the store with an iPhone 7. I did happily, smiling like someone who had just found purpose.
And here was their strategy. It dawned on me as I journeyed back home
Leaving me alone to navigate the phone by myself did not only make me feel like I deserved the device, it made me develop a bond with it and as I, by myself, manoeuvred my way past the technicalities, I got drawn into it the more, discovered why it was made for me and ultimately, how I can make it make my life a lot better, that’s beside upping my status.
Truth is, consumers no longer make purchases only because of what the products can do anymore but because of what they, as consumers can do with the products (although whether or not this is true is a conversation for another day but) Marketing communications practitioners and brand managers should begin to understand this new truth and start communicating from the consumers standpoint rather than the products. Consumers, irrespective of their IQ level like to think of themselves as smart and incapable of being sweet-talked into making purchase decisions.
It’s my hard earned money, I would be damned if I let any prepped person talk me into losing it, they seem to always think.
As such, communication strategies should be ones that draw consumers in and offer them a chance to find out for themselves and by themselves, how they can use the products to their own ‘selfish’ advantage. A colleague once told me she bought a certain brand of car, despite her lean salary, because she wanted to boost her self-esteem and this in the real sense, was largely because she figured she was the one who turned the car into an esteem booster and not the other way round.
This concept, I soon discovered is tagged consumerism and has been around for a while. The earliest record of it was in 1963 when Pepsi hired an advertising executive, Alan Pottasch to help find a solution to their dragging sales. Pottasch dared to dream of a generation that could adopt Pepsi as their focal and that was the answer to the challenge.
His strategy focused on marketing the drink without reference to its qualities but rather concentrating on how it helps the image of the people who consumed it. So amazing was this strategy that it not only gave the brand the much-needed kick, helping it compete favourably with Coke, it also had most of its consumers happily associating, describing themselves as part of the Pepsi generation.
The next few months should be fun for brand managers and marketing communications experts if they hearken to my words and exploit this new secret I just discovered.
And no, don’t worry about paying me a dime. You can just send a mail to firstname.lastname@example.org to say thank you.