I buy lots of wine from Porthos. They've now launched a wine concierge service which looks very cool. I've been frustrated plenty of times in Hawaii and Mexico with the lousy and expensive selection of wine.
This CNet piece gets at the power of community in igniting brands and, in this case, the iPhone.
But a passionate, almost evangelical base of supporters makes any marketing campaign easier. Apple's reliance on a horde of loyal fans thirsty for information is the catalyst for its marketing.
The ability to activate a community and have them ignite demand will be a critical differentiator for all tech companies going forward. Some of the things Apple did right:
A big bang launch that maintained suspense by holding back as much as it gave away
A carefully managed content flow
Kept the message simple - it's an iPhone
The listened to what we wanted and delivered with finesse
Stayed true to the brand - absolutely
Made it about what the technology does for you, not what the technology is - capturing our imagination along the way
Leveraged the community
These are just some of the things they did right. On #3 - they didn't get overly smart - it's the phone you've always wanted. There is something else about Apple's communications - almost a humble showmanship that really attracts you to their story.
Interestingly, the piece also gets at the new dynamic of launching technology. We've seen a shift from transmitting a "payload" on launch day to an ongoing conversation (#2).
Apple is launching the iPhone at a time when content aggregation sites like Digg, Techmeme, and even Google News can put a potential customer before hundreds, if not thousands, of possibly interesting stories about the product. All Apple has to do is trickle out information every now and then, as it has done in the weeks leading up to Friday's launch, and watch the frenzy take hold.
At the end of the day I wonder how much of this is to do with filling a massive void in the consumer's mind. The last time I remember a frenzy on this scale it was for Windows 95. Everything that preceded it was simply so bad a gaping space was waiting to be filled. Today it is the same in the consumer device space.
The carriers seem to want us all to have a little bit of something good. You can have a Blackberry Curve - but without integrated Navigation or WiFi, for instance. Apple has lined-up against the space created by the restrictions imposed by carriers and filled it pretty much completely.
Marketing programs, clever PR and community activation aside, nothing really beats giving people what they want.
Brilliant race this morning. Enough on who has the better boat. While it looks like Alinghi has a bit better upwind speed there is no substitute for some awesome sailing. Great also to see all the kiwi fans in Valencia.
Seems like I was right... They are important after all :-) Technobabble has put together a list of the Top 50 analyst bloggers. I can't figure out how they scored this. Looking at my Blogroll, Stowe, James, and Mike are all at the top. I wonder how they view Read/Write?
Intriguing story on what makes the news. I've been pondering this lately as it seems every time I click on the New York Times i see another image of Iraq.
The Project for Excellence in Journalism,
a not-for-profit research group, launched a weekly News Coverage Index
earlier this year. It examines some four dozen news outlets to
determine what is being covered and what is not. In the first three
months of this year, the PEJ found that the war in Iraq dwarfed all other news stories, receiving more than three times the coverage of any other single story.
This is another example of a broader shift in communications to direct and open dialog. I'd love to see Wholefoods use the blog to mobilize support for their position.
He pulls no punches, providing...
a detailed look into Whole Foods Market's decision-making process regarding the merger, as well as our company's experience interacting with the FTC staff assigned to this merger. I provide explanations of how I think the FTC, to date, has neglected to do its homework appropriately, especially given the statements made regarding prices, quality, and service levels in its complaint. I also provide a glimpse into the bullying tactics used against Whole Foods Market by this taxpayer-funded agency. Finally, I provide answers in my FAQ section to many of the questions that various Team Members have fielded from both the media and company stakeholders.
Wow... As a Wholefoods shareholder I'm thrilled he is doing this. I'd rather know what is going on from his perspective than that of the WSJ which has this to say:
Whole Foods says it will battle the FTC in court, and the case will make for some entertaining jujitsu as Mr. Mackey argues that his stores aren't as unique as his marketing materials suggest, while the FTC pleads that the merger will make Whole Foods less unique and more expensive at the same time. Such are the absurdities of modern antitrust policy.
Make Wholefoods more expensive? Could it be more expensive? Really...
We need the FTC defining markets about as much as we need a hole in head. Maybe FTC employees don't shop and the new Safeway store down the road from my Supermarket, or the Lunardi's across the street. Either way, let consumers vote with their feet - the FTC appears to be operating under the premise that they as a higher intellectual authority know better what to than we do with our pocketbook and feet.