Jobs talked on this to Segall way back in the NeXT days.
"Steve wanted the world to believe that NeXT was a relevant force with a message that deserved notice. He had no interest in an ad that was cute or inconsequential. He wouldn't pin his hopes on a marketing gimmick," writes Segall.
He wanted ads that made things important.
Importance isn't about claiming to be important; it's about actually being important.
-The iMac was important, it was the life or death of Apple and sufficiently differentiated from anything then available on the PC market to be seen as something special.
-The iPod was important. It hit market at just the right time to appeal to a digitally-savvy music-loving audience, and with iTunes it delivered an alternative to file-sharing music fans could use to get music online while staying legal. It was important because it presented a lifeline to that strand of the creative arts.
-The iPhone was important. It changed the power relationship in the mobile industry, was transformational in its user interface, and was the most innovative device yet introduced to the mobile networks at the time.
The iPad was important. It offered a new way to enjoy portable computing and -- with apps -- was the ultimate content consumption machine. It only later became clear how transformative that release has been.
Apple needs to stick to its strengths, abandon that sense of smugness in its advertising, and kick home the message that should perhaps be at the company's core:
But don't be too respectable.
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