Apple in social influence shocker

wwdc2015-photoThere’s long been a  a buzz in marketing circles around the notion that Apple doesn’t “do” or care about social media (e.g. this Hootsuite story from last year and this from UK’s Marketing Week this week) – my old buddy Adrian Langford and I have had a lively exchange over what this tells us about the role of social media in brand building in general. But this week reveals a slightly different point.

Nonsense, of course. It just happens that Apple rightly put the emphasis on building communities and supporting and facilitating them, rather than the tech that might or might not help them do it.

The lucky 5000 who got access to the ticket only “Dub Dub” (the annual Worldwide Developers’ Conference) to hear the latest hardware announcements are part of this (and have been for at least a decade). Their enthusiasm is beamed and streamed to millions of others around the world.

The million plus app builders on whom the phone and tablet businesses depend, ditto.

And, as the architect of the Apple Store concept, Ron Jonson admitted to HBR in 2011, “it isn’t focused on on selling stuff, it’s focused on building relationships”. The stores are temples to Apple-enthusiasm – from staff and customers alike.

It’s a fundamentally social thing (just without obsessing over the specific tech). Feel many other practitioners could learn from this, too. People-social not tech-social.