The way I look at it, Apple is coasting along on the momentum generated during Jobs’ last few years. Tim Cook may have been in charge of making the trains run on time (it’s an analogy; Apple doesn’t use trains), but when it comes to creating or choosing television commercials, Apple’s head honcho is about as adept as Microsoft’s Uncle Fester, CEO Steve Ballmer.
How so? Those new Genius Ads on TV are horrible.
Dude, You’re Getting A Dell
Apple has a long history of creating memorable television commercials. There’s the original blockbuster, the 1984 Super Bowl ad which heralded the coming of the Mac.
Then Apple went into the Dark Ages until Jobs returned in 1997 with a few Bunny ads which poke fun at Intel, the clever and successful iMac ads, and, of course the countless I’m a Mac, I’m a PC ads, and all the iPod and iPhone and iPads ads.
Here we are, almost a year into the reign of Tim Cook, and what does he approve as Apple’s latest television commercial ad campaign?
An overly giddy, caffeinated Apple Genius who’s willing to help really dumb Mac customers with whatever ails them at any time of the day or night– even in mid-air.
Seriously. These commercials are the worst Apple has produced in a decade or two. Maybe three. It’s not that we don’t need the Genius, but it’s obvious they exist to help Windows PC switchers who, even after buying a new Mac, don’t have a clue.
What words come to mind after viewing each of the three Genius ads? Ouch. Cringe-inducing. Dreadful.
What’s going on? Apple wants the world to know the geniuses at the Genius Bar are ready to answer any question and help with any problem (even on an airplane?). Here’s the problem. Apple has about 200-million customers who already know about the Apple Store and the Genius Bar.
Other than new-to-the-Mac neophytes or the great unwashed masses of customers Apple would be better of without, who do these commercials benefit?
The Genius ads lack Apple’s well known, well honed, highly polished pointedness and glistening shine. If you’re a former Windows PC user, or a recent switcher from Windows to Mac, and you have enormous trouble with the concept of drag and drop, you might need a Genius.
Apple has always aimed high but aiming for the muddled masses requires a lower target. For that, give Apple credit. Indeed, these ill conceived TV commercials hit a lower target. Much lower.
Tim Cook may be an experienced executive, and a talented engineer, but the Genius TV commercial campaign shows all too well that Apple still needs a creative genius at the helm.