New Apple hire suggests upcoming shift in social media marketing strategy

in General Discussion edited October 2015
In what could foreshadow a shift in Apple's social media strategy, the company this month hired Tai Tran, a digital marketing specialist and former intern who worked on the Beats by Dre social response Twitter feed.

According to his LinkedIn profile, before being scooped up Tran was an intern at Apple from May to September this year, during which time he helped shape Beats by Dre's social presence with the launch of instructional product videos posted to Twitter.

Tran, who is now a Digital Marketing Program Manager, frames the support channel as the company's "first proactive customer care content strategy." This particular flavor of Twitter-based customer outreach is largely uncharted territory for a conservative brand like Apple, making its involvement all the more unusual.

Traditionally, Apple prefers not to heavily engage with customers through social media platforms, but more recently warmed to the idea with the debut of Apple Music. Along with the Beats by Dre Support channel and Apple's official App Store Twitter feeds, the iPhone maker in July activated a Snapchat account for Apple Music, using it to push out promotional video content for Beats 1 Radio and streaming exclusives.

It's not clear what role, if any, Tran played in Apple's most recent experiments. From his credentials, however, Tran's forte is in social media marketing. With an education from UC Berkeley, he interned at marketing firm Prezi and tech giants Flextronics and Samsung. Tran still consults at Berkeley's Haas School of Business, where he also teaches a course on marketing and networking. Aside from a vague job title not much is known about Apple's new Digital Marketing Program Manager. Tran offers a tantalizing description of his position, however, saying he is "bringing the power of social and data to Apple."


  • Reply 1 of 8
    Because Ping 2.0 has been such a success at this point.
  • Reply 2 of 8
    Wow. This article is inane. You really think this "Marketing Manager" who was an INTERN just a few months before is really worthy of speculation? Apple is a huge corporation, and I'm pretty sure that this one guy is not figuring out Apple's "social media strategy."

    And just for the record, many brands have been using Twitter successfully as a point of contact for customer engagement/customer service.
  • Reply 3 of 8

    Isn't social media "expert" kind of an inside joke....

    Why is this news anyway?

    That guy has basically very little experience and no power.

    He's a nobody.

    Do every hire make the news?

    What if they change the cafeteria food? Does it make the food too?

  • Reply 4 of 8
    Proactive social platform for restrategization of customer buzzwords. Yup, perfect doublespeak for a marketing position.
  • Reply 5 of 8
    sog35 wrote: »
    Yes, so if a company fails once they should never try again.  Give me a break.  You know how many Steve Jobs products/services were failures?  You do know that Jobs failed massively with the Newton. Did that stop Jobs from releasing another mobile device?  If he listened to your line of reasoning we would have never seen the iPod/iPhone/iPad.   If you are not willing to risk failure you will never achieve huge success.

    Oops! The Newton was developed under Scully in Steve's absence. He actually killed the Newton when he returned.
  • Reply 6 of 8

    Oops! The Newton was developed under Scully in Steve's absence. He actually killed the Newton when he returned.


    How about the Apple /// or the Lisa then?

  • Reply 7 of 8
    This article doesn't make the most sense to me... With just one shot to prove value I guess a business better be really sure whatever they are testing works. With that said, it becomes a question of which social media platform will deliver KPIs your business cares about. Check out this article for a less convuluted take on the role social media plays in content marketing:
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