Apple and buzz marketing
How come when Apple releases a new phone, there are people sleeping outside the stores for days before the product is released?
How come on day one of the iPhone 5 launch, Apple sold 2,000,000 iPhones in twenty-four hours?
How does its new phone launch get on the front page of every major newspaper around the world when poor old Nokia can’t sell a phone to save itself?
And here’s the funny thing: the user interface is basically the same thing since the first iPhone came out in 2007. Each device is thinner or lighter and only adds limited extra functionality.
But we’re still hungry to buy it.
Apple’s secret is that it keeps its secrets, or at least it acts like what it is doing is a big secret until its product is launched, which leads to a lot of speculation among users and the media.
Apple is the master at teasing customers with its marketing campaigns, keeping them in suspense until its new product is launched. Apple fuels the buzz by refusing to provide any information for weeks or even months before the release of every iPhone.
For example, when Apple announced it would hold a press conference on September 12, 2012, it wouldn’t say what the press announcement would be about.
This silence caused the media to speculate whether it would be about the new iPhone 5 or something else.
All this speculation in the media led to a boost in consumer interest
— and for free—
Apple didn’t even need to advertise to get the buzz started.
Just an hour after the iPhone 5 went on sale for preorders on September 14, 2012, the Apple website stated that heavy demand for the product would only allow for preorders of the phone because enough phones were not currently available.
The result of this tactic: a record for first-day sales for the iPhone 5, and the phone remained on back order for the next several weeks, thus prolonging the ability (and desirability) of owning one.
At E-Web Marketing, we’ve adapted Apple’s tactics for our book launch clients.
When a client is ready to launch a new book , we often just send the book cover as an email to the list, without saying what the book contains, what is the price, or how to order it.
As long as the list is engaged, we’ll always get a massive response.
One time, our poor administration manager got swamped with people wanting to pre -order the book and had to spend all day telling people to be patient!
Thanks to Robert Coorey for this excerpt from his book – Feed A Starving Crowd
My two cents:
Part of the process of doing a product launch – any product launch is creating an “event”. Surrounding that event is forced anticipation that comes with the lead up to it and the scarcity that happens from the tie the “doors” open (when the product goes on sale) and when the doors close.
If done correctly it can create a veritable feeding frenzy of activity and buying. Combined with the social proof of many people all caught in excitement talking about the product, this creates a state in many people where desire has been created, there’s a time limit on their chance to buy and the risk of missing out.
Of course in the case of apple – there’s never a chance to miss out… you may have to wait a few weeks but there’s no doubt at some point they’ll sell you one. The only thing you’ll miss out on is being one of the cool kids who got theirs first.
Being on of the cool kids is something that Apple goes out of it’s way to promote as part of their branding.
For a small business you can still use many of these principles to create buzz and an event for the launch of a new product. Even using some of these ideas on a small scale can be incredibly effective.
Take a look at this book from the developer of the product launch Jeff Walker
It will give you an overview of different kinds of launches you could do in your business regardless of size and the product you are selling.