Apple may ditch longtime ad agency TBWA, look to Beats' Jimmy Iovine for marketing

Posted:
in General Discussion edited July 2014
A report on Monday says ad industry executives are speculating that Apple's longtime relationship with agency TBWA\\Media Arts Lab is near its breaking point, with some insiders predicting the tech giant will look to Beats' Jimmy Iovine to revitalize its marketing magic.



According to the New York Post, Madison Avenue executives are giddy over the prospect that Apple may soon ditch longtime ad partner TBWA\\Media Arts Lab in favor of a new agency, with some saying the Cupertino company is looking to Beats' cofounder Jimmy Iovine to reinvigorate the brand's marketing operations.

"Apple bought Beats for a lot of reasons," said one unnamed ad executive. "They think they're marketing geniuses. It is safe to assume Beats would be part of an assessment of all [Apple] partners."

Among other "evidence," ad execs point to email correspondence that came out in April as part of Apple's second California court case against Samsung. In a series of emails, Apple SVP of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller expressed concern to TBWA over Samsung's recent rise in marketing prowess.

Specifically, the Korean company managed to gain enough traction that the Wall Street Journal ran a critique of Apple's ad efforts, asking "Has Apple Lost Its Cool To Samsung?" Schiller pressed TBWA, telling the ad firm, "We have a lot of work to do to turn this around."

TBWA\\Media Arts Lab, an offshoot of TBWA\\Chiat\\Day specifically tasked to handle Apple's account, responded with a memo that suggested Apple make sweeping organizational operating changes. Schiller was apparently "shocked" by the response, which TBWA later recanted as "overblown."

On the flip side, a report from June 2013 claimed TBWA\\Media Arts Lab has supposedly been at odds with Schiller's management style since Apple cofounder Steve Jobs died in 2011.

A report from June claimed Apple is quickly building out its own ad team with more than 1,000 hires in sales and creative personnel.

Most recently, a survey looked at the effectiveness of Apple ads over the past year, pitting those made by TBWA against in-house creations from Apple. The study gave higher marks to the outside ad agency.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 40
    brlawyerbrlawyer Posts: 828member

    Sure, just show someone wearing gigantic headphones and saying "I am a Mac"...I am sure it's gonna work.

  • Reply 2 of 40
    dgnr8dgnr8 Posts: 196member

    My thoughts and fears are coming true.

     

    When Mr. Job's passed I thought there goes the deciding factor, there goes the tie breaker, there goes the peace maker.

     

    Now rather than one cohesive execution with attention to detail you are going to see more and more fractioning of control.

     

    I don't think it is going to matter how awesome the products are going to be or how they market those products, it is the dirty laundry that has been coming out over the last couple of years that is the problem and is starting to tarnish the brand.

     

    Mr. Job's would never stand for any of this to reach the light of public eye or you were done. I do not see the same level of respect (or fear) for Mr. Cook.

  • Reply 3 of 40
    adonissmuadonissmu Posts: 1,774member

    I have to see the ads Apple comes out with first before I judge. They may be done well. Lord knows they couldn't get much worse than the geek ads... I want Apple to stop doing so many ads honestly. I think fewer location targeted ads is better. 

  • Reply 4 of 40
    paxmanpaxman Posts: 4,670member

    Well the current series of ads are nice, well done, and possibly effective (Really like Parenthood - ), but there is nothing 'iconic' about recent campaigns. They are just too 'feel good' and 'safe'. Apple's marketing needs a shake up. Mind you, as exciting as bringing in the Apple account might be, it is also a hugely difficult account. It is easy to say a campaign needs to be iconic, it is much different to be tasked with the job. I think Jimmy Lovine would be a great marketing lead.  

     

    When I say 'marketing' I mean the high profile tv spots.

  • Reply 5 of 40
    I think they need to go back to TBWA, hat in hand. These latest ads are either boring as hell or incredibly obnoxious. If I hear that damn chicken fat ad one more time, I'm going to lose my freakin' mind.
  • Reply 6 of 40
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 5,175member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by DGNR8 View Post

     

    My thoughts and fears are coming true.

     

    When Mr. Job's passed I thought there goes the deciding factor, there goes the tie breaker, there goes the peace maker.

     

    Now rather than one cohesive execution with attention to detail you are going to see more and more fractioning of control.

     

    I don't think it is going to matter how awesome the products are going to be or how they market those products, it is the dirty laundry that has been coming out over the last couple of years that is the problem and is starting to tarnish the brand.

     

    Mr. Job's would never stand for any of this to reach the light of public eye or you were done. I do not see the same level of respect (or fear) for Mr. Cook.


     

    Please don't speak for Steve Jobs. Nobody knows what he would have done. Its not like he always made good moves either so don't act like he's god. 

  • Reply 7 of 40
    dgnr8 wrote: »
    My thoughts and fears are coming true.

    People have a tendency to see what they believe, not believe they see.

    Until this actually happens, you should remember that it's rumor and not fact.
  • Reply 8 of 40
    theothergeofftheothergeoff Posts: 2,081member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by DGNR8 View Post

     

    My thoughts and fears are coming true.

     

    When Mr. Job's passed I thought there goes the deciding factor, there goes the tie breaker, there goes the peace maker.

     




    Agreed on the first part

    Never a tie breaker, always the decision maker.  HE had 51 percent of the vote in his office, unless you convinced him, no idea moved forward.

    peacemaker? Jobs? 

     

    Quote:

    Now rather than one cohesive execution with attention to detail you are going to see more and more fractioning of control.

     

    I don't think it is going to matter how awesome the products are going to be or how they market those products, it is the dirty laundry that has been coming out over the last couple of years that is the problem and is starting to tarnish the brand.

     

    Mr. Job's would never stand for any of this to reach the light of public eye or you were done. I do not see the same level of respect (or fear) for Mr. Cook.


    I don't think Cook is any better or worse than Jobs was.   

     

    Cook is running  a company arguably 3X times larger that Steve did.   When you had 2 [iPod, Mac] (or 1 as it was the case after steve 'broke the tie' and killed every thing but the Mac HW product line)  products, it was easy to work with ess delegation.  Even in Apple's Functional organization (not product line), there still has to be someone in charge of Marketing... for everything.

     

    Mr Jobs didn't have to comply with discovery subpoena's...  oh, wait, he did, when he had to get someone to draft a 'fall on the sword' memo to deal with the options backdating.   Talk about black eye.

     

    I don't see anything here that tarnishes the brand.  In fact, I think this is a major improvement on the brand, by putting someone in charge of brand, early and often.   As I saw it, I saw 3 or 4 people who could have been infighting over being in charge of brand.  Naming ONE person, and a person that made a 3rd rate set of headphones a must have product in a demographic that in Apple's market they are playing 2nd/3rd fiddle... is a good start to get clarity of message, especially as Apple moves into new markets (home, health, online security).

     

    And to me, if the message isn't clear, This could be a controlled leak on Madision Avenue to see who can be trusted, and get TWBA to understand everyone is replaceable. 

  • Reply 9 of 40
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Mac-sochist View Post



    I think they need to go back to TBWA, hat in hand. These latest ads are either boring as hell or incredibly obnoxious. If I hear that damn chicken fat ad one more time, I'm going to lose my freakin' mind.

    I thought I'd heard the last of that song when I heard it on Luci's Toyshop in Ohio back in the 60s.

     

  • Reply 10 of 40
    rogifanrogifan Posts: 10,669member
    Here's what Ken Segall posted on his blog a few weeks ago.

    http://kensegall.com/2014/06/apples-marketing-rethink-not-exactly-a-surprise/

    [quote]Jony Ive was Steve’s design soulmate. There was no internal equivalent when it came to advertising. The agency was his Jony.

    Of course, Steve had Phil Schiller and others as marketing advisors. But his relationship with the agency was special — forged through many years of history-making ads.

    As much as the agency wanted Phil to be happy, the highest priority was making Steve happy.

    So it didn’t take a genius to guess that when Phil became the marketing leader, the nature of the agency relationship would change dramatically.

    As the new chief, Phil was veto-proof. However, he did not have the same level of taste as Steve. Nor did he have an emotional connection to the agency.

    The agency’s magic shield had lost its power source — and the critics inside Apple gained a louder voice.[/quote]
  • Reply 11 of 40
    apple ][apple ][ Posts: 9,233member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post



    Until this actually happens, you should remember that it's rumor and not fact.

     

    Wise words. I was just about to go off on a massive, wordy rant, but then I realized that this is just another crappy rumor, so I'm not going to bother to waste my time.

  • Reply 12 of 40
    rob53rob53 Posts: 2,648member
    Wall Street believes the lies and half-truths Samsung comes out with way too much. Where are the truth in advertising folks challenging samsung's garbage? They only attack Apple and are sucked in by samsung's lies.
  • Reply 13 of 40
    flaneurflaneur Posts: 4,526member
    I think they need to go back to TBWA, hat in hand. These latest ads are either boring as hell or incredibly obnoxious. If I hear that damn chicken fat ad one more time, I'm going to lose my freakin' mind.

    It is in terrible taste, because of that song. Where did it come from?

    They also should realize that fitness in general is a whole universe of bad taste, and doesn't bear repetitive, high-definition depiction. Right under the surface of this narcissism is a whole bunch of dirty, smelly laundry. It ain't at all sexy, unless you've got some fetish or other. I could go on, but I won't. Sufficient to note that it won't sell in France.
  • Reply 14 of 40
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Flaneur View Post





    It is in terrible taste, because of that song. Where did it come from?

     

    Here.

  • Reply 15 of 40
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 9,480member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by DGNR8 View Post

     

    My thoughts and fears are coming true.

     

    When Mr. Job's passed I thought there goes the deciding factor, there goes the tie breaker, there goes the peace maker.

     

    Now rather than one cohesive execution with attention to detail you are going to see more and more fractioning of control.

     

    I don't think it is going to matter how awesome the products are going to be or how they market those products, it is the dirty laundry that has been coming out over the last couple of years that is the problem and is starting to tarnish the brand.

     

    Mr. Job's would never stand for any of this to reach the light of public eye or you were done. I do not see the same level of respect (or fear) for Mr. Cook.


     

    You know what I think? I think you are completely nuts. That’s what I think. Tarnishing of the brand? Ridiculous. Go back to your post-Jobs spider hole.

  • Reply 16 of 40
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by rob53 View Post



    Wall Street believes the lies and half-truths Samsung comes out with way too much. Where are the truth in advertising folks challenging samsung's garbage? They only attack Apple and are sucked in by samsung's lies.

    Let's see an ad with hundreds of young Korean school children all studying on their iPads, Korean scientists using a Mac Pro, Korean businessmen calling on their iPhones, Korean graphic designers using FCP on their iMacs and a Korean family using Apple TV with a Sharp TV monitor.

     

    Dissolve to the Apple Store in Seoul, full of customers...

     

    Ninety-nine out of a hundred Koreans prefer Apple quality consumer electronics!

  • Reply 17 of 40
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 33,408member
    Attention! Attention! The New York Post is NOT a credible source of news.
  • Reply 18 of 40
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by rob53 View Post



    Wall Street believes the lies and half-truths Samsung comes out with way too much. 

     

    By the way Wall Street has nothing to do with Samsung. Samsung stock is not traded in the US.

  • Reply 19 of 40
    flaneur wrote: »
    It is in terrible taste, because of that song. Where did it come from?

     
    Here.

    Thanks for the reference. I'm surprised I don't remember that, as I was in 5th and 6th grade in that era. Weird.

    ETA: Usually they're much better with the music. I liked the one where they were pouring the iPhone 5 out of molten gold to that...well, it sounded like a long-lost Canned Heat song, but I don't suppose it was.
  • Reply 20 of 40
    chris_cachris_ca Posts: 2,543member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    A report on Monday says ad industry executives are speculating that Apple's longtime relationship with agency TBWA\\Media Arts Lab is near its breaking point, with some insiders predicting the tech giant will look to Beats' Jimmy Iovine to revitalize its marketing magic.

    He got $3 billion out of Apple, so he knows how to do something right...

    LOL

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