You may have noticed the world’s most successful brand, and the world’s most valuable company, turned a $1,000,000,000,000 last week (in market cap).
Not bad for an organization that Steve Jobs had to save from bankruptcy just 21 years ago.
So how did Apple do it?
The playbook is too long to review here but one overarching theme comes to mind.
He understood innately what consumers deepest desires were. Enjoying their favourite music anytime, anywhere. Connecting with loved ones on facetime. Demystifying technology at friendly genius bars. While competitors were selling features and technology, Apple was selling desire, generating love.
I loved my first ipod. Having thousands of songs at my fingertips in this tiny, beautifully designed metal wedge, in any colour under the rainbow.
I loved my iphone. I marveled that it was so easy to use it did not come with an instruction booklet. That I could ditch my camera and video camera . I could search the web and find any answer on google. I would trade my old phone in for the new one even when the old phone was perfectly fine. I didn’t blink when the invoice said $659.00 for a phone. Steve understood the emotion attached to ‘I’.
At Level5 Strategy Group, we say a great brand understands the Value of Promise Consistently Kept™.
Steve Jobs understood what humans valued at a deep level. He promised ‘simplicity’ through emotions and built a tightly controlled, exceptional customer experience to deliver that promise. 21 years later Apple is still delivering against that promise, better than anyone.
These days I love turning my iphone off. I’ve become too involved. Too dependent. But I also can’t wait for Apple’s next category disrupter.
If only Apple could deliver what I really desire these days – a simpler life.
By: Matthew Kelly, Managing Partner