If you’ve been watching anything from live television to Hulu, you’ve likely seen one of Apple’s ads for the new iPhone 5, or the iPad mini. They’re clean and simple, easy to understand, and paired with catchy music – but we couldn’t help but ask: what exactly are they advertising?
They’ve got ads talking about their new earbuds:
The size of the new iPhone:
The size of the screen:
A fancy new camera feature:
And… the fact that the iPad mini is a mini iPad?
A little pathos goes a long way.
None of these features are all that awe-inspiring. New earbuds are kind of cool, but I’m not going to buy a new phone just for the sake of the headphones. Yeah, the screen is bigger, but it’s still smaller than a lot of smartphones out there – and how are you going to text with just one thumb? What is the point of the iPad mini, anyway?
And yet – the ads still work. They still stick with you, make you laugh or smile, even when you aren’t all that interested in the product. We’ve certainly thought a lot more about iPhones in the last few weeks than we would have otherwise. We can’t deny that the marketing campaign has been successful, if only in raising awareness of the products.
What’s really interesting about these ads is that fact that they aren’t focusing on groundbreaking innovations, or technological wonders. The ads are entirely about your perception as a viewer. Apple wants you to see the cute, interesting little things their products can do – things that aren’t amazing, but are certainly a little easier. They aren’t saying “buy our product because it’s the newest and greatest thing out there”; they are saying “buy our product because we customized it just for you”.
What about the competition?
Of course, on the other end of the spectrum, we have the Samsung Galaxy S3 ad, mocking apple fanboys lining up to buy a new phone just because “the headphone jack is on the bottom”:
Samsung has a few good points about their phone, too. They’ve had 4g for a while now, and their screens are bigger. Coming out with this ad right when the iPhone 5 came out was a great marketing move on their part – and it made for a great laugh as well.
So what are your thoughts? Is the new iPhone worth shelling out the cash? We don’t think so, but that doesn’t mean we can’t appreciate the great ads.