Archive for PR

Brand Apple: Is love really blind?

I love Apple. I love Steve Jobs. I love their advertising. I love their arrogance. I love their products. Infact the love stretches beyond just products. It extends into inspiration, unconditional love… ummm a religion? Saatchi & Saatchi refers to this phenomenon as Lovemarks.

Strangely, while the above is somehow far more intangible in the buying decision making process, the far more tangible aspects like ‘consumer reviews’ fail to soften the purchase motivations.

Recently, while surfing Apple’s online catalog, I read some fairly negative consumer feedback about the Apple Mighty Mouse.

Suddenly, I took notice, but I didn’t defer my purchase. Primarily because of the following reasons:

  • The fact that Apple had the arrogance, courage, confidence and the transparency to showcase the negative comments worked for me, and somehow fit the current brand image in my mind
  • the Lovemark,
  • And lastly the amazing product that Mighty Mouse is in the first place.

Whats leaves me gasping for answers is whether all the consumer mass that is enamoured by a brand ready to ignore the user feedback and go on to pay a premium for products (read brands)? If it does, then whole a lot of things work – Super Bowl (1984 Think Different Ad) as media (remember, White Colour, Fruit-led brand names, and some great advertising.

Apple Store Reviews by Customers

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‘Total Recall 2006’ by Dell… India Inc listening?

Recently, there was a huge crisis in the Dell Headquarters. Well, a couple of Dell Notebooks saw their batteries blowing up and bursting into flames…

Now while most organisations will try and shove blame on their partners (SONY is the battery manufacturer in this case), Dell took a bold stand and recalled the batteries. They set up https://www.dellbatteryprogram.com/ in a fortnight and shipped out some batteries within days of the incident.. well reportedly incidents!!

This led me to question whether an Indian manufacturer would ever gather the courage to so… I think Indians keep grappling with the idea of how to shroud the problems and hide them….

A recent example in the Indian context has been Pepsi. The colas (Pepsi and Coke) were grappling with the pesticide controversy nationwide… http://in.rediff.com/money/2006/aug/02cola.htm

Pepsi went on to use PespsiCo India Chief Ravi Bakshi in a tactical filme aimed at reducing the ‘harmful effects of pesticides’ 🙂 Check out the story board: http://www.agencyfaqs.com/advertising/storyboard/Pepsi/2350.html

According to me, if the film would have been less of a productionised effort, it could have worked for me… Currently the labs are sparkling white, the young guy on the bench meeting Rajiv Bakshi is a very forced situation…

On the brighter side, this seems to be a leaps ahead of PR Spokespersonnel from Indian Companies vehemently denying all allegations!

Also, this is seemingly not a fit with ‘Pepsi the Brand’… It is somewhat aggressive (versus Coca Cola), much younger (than Coca Cola) and far more vibrant… This film is submissive, flat (unlike most colas), and defensive…

Will it work? Well, time should be the best pesticide test.

Interestingly, the American Society for Quality has a page on the website that showcases how India doesn’t have a quality regulator. http://www.asq.org/qualitynews/qnt/execute/displaySetup?newsID=481

Do write in if you know of any product recalls in India… Cheers…

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