I’m with David Abbott when it comes to computers. To show how
little he understood the PowerBook concept, Abbott originally
requisitioned two - one for the office and one for home. Like Abbott,
however, one day I know I’ll be computer literate - the day I win the
lottery, buy Mustique and give up writing the world’s worst-positioned
column for a living.
As you all know, the first duty of this column is to call a turkey a
turkey. Or could it be my role, just once, to talk about what I consider
a gem - TBWA/Chiat Day’s new ’think different’ campaign for Apple
Having invented the first commercially successful PC, which inspired IBM
to create its own rival, Apple’s fortunes began a long and largely
self-inflicted decline in the 80s; its insistence on high profit margins
kept prices high and its market share dwindled. Now, with its
credibility returning, Apple (expensive as its products still are) can
promote itself as the computer company for people who have ideas.
The TV work features footage of rebels such as Einstein, Gandhi and
Branson, the idea being to associate Apple with misfits who have changed
the world or, as the ad puts it, ’it’s the people who are crazy enough
to think they can change the world, who actually do’.
This is a nice way of avoiding the usual fuzzy logic of computer ads -
many of which, I’m convinced, are written by people who don’t get out
enough, and are aimed at polyester-clad nerds whose enthusiasm for
playing with technology overshadows other aspects of life, such as
socialising or washing.
I’m reminded of a story about Apple which makes you wonder what Chiat
Day did to the client to convince it to buy this idea. To correct a
manufacturing fault, Apple recommended that buyers of the Apple III
computer lift the machine a couple of feet from a hard surface and drop
it. Now why isn’t creating great advertising that simple?