If you know me, you’re already aware that if there’s a bandwagon – I’m probably going to jump on it. So when the official announcement about Apple’s newest toy came out yesterday, I was giddy as a school girl.
Here’s a quick look back to see how Apple was able to go from a niche product, with hardcore fans, to a product that the rest of the market struggles to keep up with – and many more hardcore fans (lovingly referred to as Fanbois).
On Dec 5, 2000, Apple announced that their Q1 revenue was expected to be around $1 billion, with a net loss of between $220 – $225 million, and expectations for fiscal 2001 were to be around $6 – $6.5 billion.
I love this quote from the May 21 edition of Business Week :
Jobs’s focus on selling just a few consumer Macs has helped boost profits, but it is keeping Apple from exploring potential new markets. And his perfectionist attention to aesthetics has resulted in beautiful but pricey products with limited appeal outside the faithful: Apple’s market share is a measly 2.8%. "Apple’s problem is it still believes the way to grow is serving caviar in a world that seems pretty content with cheese and crackers," gripes former Chief Financial Officer Joseph Graziano.
Damn those folks at Apple – wanting to give you more than you expected…
On October 23, 2001, the day Apple announced the first iPod, who would have guessed that in less than a decade Apple would become synonymous with usability, innovation, and effective branding.
With generation after generation, the iPod continued to evolve with the rest of the Apple offerings. By either providing more innovation or a decreased price, and sometimes both, Apple was able to expand their fan base exponentially. Continuing to provide caviar to those willing to try it.
Apple had two big announcements this week, the second was the much heralded iPad, but the real announcement came at the beginning of the week “If you annualize our quarterly revenue, it’s surprising that Apple is now a $50+ billion company,” said Mr Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “ I don’t think anyone is really that surprised.
There are two ways to look at this:
- Steve Jobs is a visionary; a strategic master guaranteed to succeed
- Steve Jobs is the luckiest SOB on the planet
If you want to be the Steve Jobs on your team, do you have a plan to evolve your brand, or are you planning on being lucky?
Do you have any caviar for your customers?