Two "Home Run" Ad-Ideas for Apple

in General Discussion edited January 2014
First, from top to bottom:

1. A big picture of an apple with a bite out of it and a smile on its “face.”

2. A slogan beneath it: "Keep the Doctor Away"

3. (Optional, or held in reserve for “upping the ante” in the future): A small picture, off to the lower right, in black and white. (I.e., inconspicuous but pointed, like the little digs at the lower right of cartoons by Toles.): A PC monitor with a non-smiley face and X's for eyes. A puzzled doctor in a white coat stands alongside applying a stethoscope to its side.



1.\tA drawing of a balance scale. On the right-hand pan is a smiling, stylized (bitten) apple. On the left-hand pan, decisively outweighed, is a larger “hill of beans.” (I.e., the thing that matters to bean-counters.)

2.\tThe slogan: "Weighed and Found Worthy." (Alternatively, "Heavyweight," or “Quality Counts,” or (in a different version) "Weigh, Don't Count.") This could be in small type, or even omitted. The visual is so clever that any text might detract from it. And it would be memorably daring to let the visual stand on its own--it would be "hip minimalism" to the max. OTOH, the wording is clever too: it implies that persons who count only beans (price) are overlooking the bottom line.

3.\tTestimonials from large businesses that have switched to the Mac (like Der Spiegel) on the basis of benefits to their bottom line, when all things are accounted for.


In my none-too-humble opinion these two ads are as good as the classic minimalistic Volkswagen ads from the 1960s. (E.g., “Think Small” and “Lemon.”) Like them (whose “look” Apple should imitate), they’re brief and to the point, which is so sharp that it penetrates without pounding. They’re serenely above the fray, but they (thereby) win the battle. Readers will smile when they figure them out, unless they work for MS. (BTW, they make MS’s recent “creative” ads look feeble by comparison, which readers will unconsciously notice--and draw an inference from.)


Incidentally, back in the early 80’s, when I read that MS was looking for ad themes, I sent them a drawing of a goofy-looking, triumphantly smiling, three-eyed frog on a lily-pad, above a curved-into-a-smile triumphant banner with zigzag ends that proclaimed “Maximus in Minimus.” (“The leader in small things”—i.e., the big frog in the little pond.) This was to-the-point and memorable, besides being a crowd-pleaser. But, curiously, I never heard back from them. (Perhaps they're still thinking it over.)


  • Reply 1 of 14

    1.\tA painting or photo of an apple (including bite mark) with an arrow through it. (Perhaps it would be best to show the apple from the archer's viewpoint, rather than with the arrow shown sideways.)

    2.\tCaption: “Aim for the Apple of Your Eye.”

    3. (Optional): A paragraph of text urging readers to "go for it" and get their heart's desire.
  • Reply 2 of 14
    irelandireland Posts: 17,547member
    Forget about ads, they need a store in every country in Europe, that should be top priority.
  • Reply 3 of 14
    Ireland: They're running ads already, and they're going to continue to do so, so I'm not proposing any diversion of resources. I'm just giving them a way to get more bang for their ad-dollar. I agree that spreading more stores is important--and I think they're planning to do so. (It would also be neat if they could ink a deal with IBM to resell Macs--IBM has a worldwide presence.)
  • Reply 4 of 14

    1. A drawing of John Hodgman dressed in Isaac Newton garb, one hand scratching or rubbing his head, the other holding an apple, which he is inspecting with a puzzled look.

    2.\tCaption: ?Take a Bite?

    3.\tThe text beneath the caption explains that PC users can continue to run their PC environment on an Apple, while ?nibbling? on the Apple environment from time to time (via Boot Camp, etc.).

    Of course, some people won?t be familiar with Hodgson, and some people won?t even be familiar with Newton. And there?s nothing logical about urging a Newton stand-in to bite the apple. But the ad will still work. It?s attention-grabbing and memorable, and the caption and text communicate a clear message.
  • Reply 5 of 14

    1.\tPicture of an attractive apple, with a bite.

    2.\tCaption: Delicious.

    3.\tThe text paragraph below the caption contains an introductory sentence and then testimonials from users, preferably celebrities, raving about their Macs.
  • Reply 6 of 14

    1.\tPicture of an attractive apple, with a bite.

    2.\tCaption: Once You Bite, You?re Bitten

    3.\tThe text paragraph below the caption contains an introductory sentence and then testimonials from smitten users, preferably celebrities, raving about their Macs.
  • Reply 7 of 14
    piotpiot Posts: 1,346member
    Sorry Roger, but your interpretation of "Home Run" must be different from mine.
  • Reply 8 of 14
    A home run scores a point, or makes a point.

    Symbolically, of course, a home run is something more: it means something that is outstandingly good (or “insanely great”). I think the first two ad-ideas, at least, qualify. They are challenging (attention-getting), concise, clear, clever, and “sticky” (memorable). They aren’t just emptily “creative”—there’s a rationale for them. They put a sharp, barbed point on some of Apple’s basic messages, thus:

    1: “Keep the Doctor Away” (from the old chestnut, “An apple a day keeps the doctor away”) communicates, memorably, that Macs are less susceptible to viruses.

    2: “Weighed and Found Worthy” (a play on words in the familiar phrase from the Book of Daniel, “weighed and found wanting”) communicates, memorably, that Macs make sense from a bean-counter’s analytic, money-saving perspective. I.e., they aren’t just cute, expensive toys for the design department.

    The other ideas aren’t “home runs,” but they’re better than singles (which is the level of the ordinary ad). I’m listing them in the order of their attractiveness to me:

    6: “Once You Bite, You’re Bitten” word-plays on the vernacular meaning of “bitten,” namely, enthusiastic. (As in, “He’s been bitten by the geo-caching bug.”) It’s a compact, clever way of communicating a message that would sound tired if phrased any other way, such as “Try it, you’ll like it.” That’s a message that Apple wants to get across. And it provides a nice segue to a list of quotes by enthusiastic Apple owners.

    4: “Take a Bite.” This of course is the wordless suggestion of Apple’s logo, but not everybody gets the point. Unfortunately, it would be gauche and counter-productive to directly urge an ad-reader to do so. By addressing that remark to Hodgman, which is amusing-in-context, the difficulty is finessed, because the reader won’t feel it's is aimed at him.

    5: “Delicious.” This simply means “it’s good,” but it also alludes to a variety of apple, which will tickle readers who “get it.” (This allusiveness, like that of the other ads, flatters readers by treating them as intelligent co-equals who don’t need a dumbed-down message. This was a large part of the appeal and strategy of the 60’s Volkswagen ads, which didn’t talk down to their audience.) And it, like #6 above, provides a segue to a collection of brief owner-testimonials.

    3: “Aim for the Apple of Your Eye.” If you analyze it, it doesn’t make logical sense, but it’s visually striking, memorable, and effective (I think). (I.e., I think it works psychologically, for some odd reason.)
  • Reply 9 of 14
    mysticmystic Posts: 514member
    How about an ad for windows...

    Adam at his windows computer...

    Eve comes running up with an apple...

  • Reply 10 of 14
    ahaha, Apple.. the forbidden fruit.. go on, just one bite, and you're stuck with eternal damnation!
  • Reply 11 of 14
    It's funny how often Macs show up in other companies' ads too, and on TV. It's looking like PC's in Hollywood is a thing of the past. I've been posting some screen shots to this site along with others finding macs in a lot of TV shows recently and even in commercials and print ads.

    Not a spam site. No worries.

    I like the fact that everyone else is advertising Apple products for them. It's becoming more of a lifestyle than anything, and it really is a good time for Apple to take advantage of lifestyle marketing by showing the every day user how Apple can help simplify and organize their own lives.
  • Reply 12 of 14
    piotpiot Posts: 1,346member
    Originally Posted by Roger Knights View Post

    They are challenging (attention-getting), concise, clear, clever, and ?sticky? (memorable).

    No they are not!

    They are crude visual interpretations of 'apple-based' well known phrases.

    Apple can do better than that.

    Apple already does better than that.

    Hell even rookie creative teams do better than that.

    Just don't give up your day job. That's all I'm sayin'.
  • Reply 13 of 14
    "Well-known apple-based phrases"?

    1. I concede that "Keeps the doctor away" is a well-known phrase. But it hasn't been used in an ad to point out an Apple computer's resistance to viruses. If it's already occurred to a few other Apple fans, as I suspect it has, that hardly means it's familiar to 99% of the public, so it would make a fresh ad. (And my suggestion that a little Toles-style snippet in the lower right corner of a puzzled doctor stethoscoping a Windows PC is a touch of originality. (EDIT: I.e., it identifies "the doctor" with "the PC support technician," which makes the phase meaningful in an Apple ad.))

    2. "Weighed and found worthy" is very non-obvious--it's a creative twist on "weighed and found wanting."

    Contrary to your mean-spirited put-down, both of my "home run" phrases are far removed from the obvious take-offs that routinely occur to people (e.g., about Newton and the apple, Adam and Eve and the apple, apple pie, etc.).

    "Crude visual interpretations"?

    The visuals are simple and meant to be so, just like the visuals in the VW ads. That doesn't mean they're "crude" in the sense of "clumsy." They aren't. The visual for item 2, an image of an apple weighed against a pile of beans, is striking and sophisticated, not labored and done-to-death. Readers would be intrigued enough by its provocativeness to read the text. (Getting them to do so is half the battle in an ad.) As for the visual for item 1, it is simply the apple logo--there is no "interpretation" involved at all, let alone any "crude interpretation."

    "Apple can do better than that. Apple already does better than that."

    Why don't you cite some print-ad examples?

    "Hell even rookie creative teams do better than that."

    Really? Let's see YOUR toppers.
  • Reply 14 of 14
    piotpiot Posts: 1,346member
    Apple (the tech and CE company!) has one of the most recognizable global brands. It has taken decades of producing innovative and successful products coupled with some great advertising along the way.

    The Apple logo just happens to be a graphic of .... an apple! However many millions of people only have to see that particular logo and they instantly associate it with "the iPod guys" or iPhones.... or Mac computers.

    Apple has successfully made a little picture of an apple represent its company.... and it's products.

    Apple's "apple" no longer has anything whatsoever to do with fruit! All your advertising ideas are based on apple the.... fruit.

    If Apple are interested in resurrecting ideas from 25 years ago, then surely you are the man to talk to.
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