“Earlier this week, Apple’s ad agency confirmed that the company had yanked its widely panned ‘Genius Bar’ ads, which debuted during the Olympics,” Jordan Weissmann writes for The Atlantic. “According to TBWA/Media/Arts Lab’s official line, the decision to kill the campaign, which featured an Apple Store genius helping out a series of hapless middle-aged men, had nothing to do with the wretched reaction of bloggers and fans. Rather, the commercials were scheduled for a limited run all along.”

“Since the campaign began airing, many have wondered why Apple seemed to be producing commercials targeted exclusively at older males, who traditionally fell outside the company’s core customer base. The market researchers at YouGov are now offering up an answer: the company may be trying to connect with aging fans,” Weissmann writes. “According to YouGov, their data is evidence that ‘adults 35+ have been bigger supporters of the Apple brand than the 18 – 34 demographic.’ So those Olympic ads, no matter how awful their execution, at least may have been targeted at their new best customers.”

Weissmann writes, “I’m not sure that’s absolutely right. What YouGov seems to be measuring, more than consumer sentiment, is the state of Apple’s PR efforts. But whichever way you choose to interpret their numbers, they should should still be troubling for Tim Cook & Co.”

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