Is the Apple Brand Losing its Appeal?
May 03.2013
Archived under: Strategy 

Is the Apple brand losing its appeal?

Football fans converge on the Super Bowl every year to catch the game, while marketing mavericks tune in for the all-important half-time ads.

The event offers the most expensive air time in the world, with the average cost of a 30-second ad in this year’s Super Bowl XLVII costing around $4 million. One of the most talked about ads this year was the Samsung ad, a $15 million 2-minute masterpiece that enlisted some help from Hollywood to promote the variety of Galaxy smart phones and tabs. The ad was good – a little too good, according to Ken Segall. Segall spent six years working with Apple and Steve Jobs directly, helping the tech giant come up with product branding ideas and names. But in an increasingly competitive market, it appears the likes of Samsung are finally catching up.

“Apple has always been amazingly good at marketing,” writes Segall in a post on his blog, Ken Segall’s Observatory. “It’s been the gold standard in marketing as long as most of us can remember…. But something’s changed. While you can still argue that Macs and i-devices have a ton of appeal, you can’t argue that Apple is still untouchable when it comes to advertising.

The fact is, it is being touched — often and effectively — by none other than Samsung.”

So is it true? Are Apple losing their competitive edge? Or more to the point, what are Samsung doing so well?

We already spoke about how Apple has been ahead of the marketing curve (link this to blog 1). But it seems that this line of thought is being picked up by worthy competitors. The latest offering from Samsung drew comparisons to Apple’s iconic “1984” commercial, which also made its debut during the Super Bowl halftime. But the rebranding of Samsung has lots to do with the marketing department’s initiative in their own right.

Let’s look at the numbers.

Samsung is spending a lot on revamping it’s image. A lot. In 2012, the telecom company spent an estimated $4,000 million on advertising – more than Apple, Microsoft and Coca Cola. According to Segall, it’s not just how much they’re spending, but the messaging that has helped them step out to the front of the advertising race. “In contrast to Apple, which has been sticking to its product-based ads, Samsung has been scoring points with its people-based ads — most of which play off some growing negative perceptions about Apple.”

Is Segall right - is blending highly-competitive products, creativity and a large budget the secret to beating Apple?....