LA Times: Apple and Steve Jobs are the masters of buzz marketing

“After whipping people into a frenzy a couple of months ago for his $599 iPhone, [Apple CEO Steve Jobs] now says he’s slashing the price by a third. The announcement Wednesday instantly drew scorn from Apple enthusiasts who’d rushed out to purchase the high-priced gizmo and now wonder whether they got played for chumps,” David Lazarus writes for The Los Angeles Times.

Lazarus writes, “It also ensured yet more free press for a company that excels at the art of buzz and at manipulating both consumers and the media — a sophisticated practice that’s increasingly being employed by businesses and political players. ‘Apple and Jobs are the masters,’ said Ramez Toubassy, president of Brand Sense Partners, a Century City brand-consulting firm that counts Britney Spears and MGM among its clients. ‘All consumer-goods companies can take a page from their book.’

“As Apple’s buzz machine kicked into high gear Thursday, the company said it would offer $100 in store credit to angry iPhone owners like Toubassy, thus guaranteeing still more publicity and the prospect of even more profit,” Lazarus writes. “Such is the power of buzz and the power of a hot brand.”

Full article here.

19 Comments

  1. Apple has a lot of inventory to move or else.

    See either a new iPhone 2 come January MacWorld or Apple not coming out with one then and a gradual exiting from the market over the course of 2008.

    All depends how much inventory gets sold now and the new year.

    After all most people just want a slim, long battery life, low cost phone.

    With the US economy headed for a recession in 2008, not much cash for $600 iPhones and expensive contracts.

  2. For Whom The Bell Tolls wins “Dumbass of the Week” award.

    Apple’s iPhone is already the best-selling smartphone. Apple is well on their way to dominating the market.

    Next time, try some reality with your cornflakes.

  3. FWTBT,
    First, the iPhone is now $399 and not the $699 you quote.

    Second, the basic plan with AT&T;is exactly what I have with Verizon but it includes unlimited data for the iPhone AND the price is only a few dollars more.

    More FUD extinguished! Especially that high plan cost one that everyone seems to believe.

  4. Dammed if you do, dammed if you don’t. The media creates their own buzz…it’s the nature of the beast. Would someone stab this beast once and for all?

    Noticed too the silence coming from “Redmond”. MS must be taking notes about how to get effective Media attention, or maybe Ballmer’s too busy filling out a refund form.

  5. And why all of a sudden is everyone talking about how much the service is going to cost over the two years of the contract??? No one ever mentioned that fixed cost before with other phones/smartphones. You’ve always had to spend around $1500 for service over the life of a two-year contract but suddenly people start whining about it when the iPhone comes out.

  6. ” . . . or maybe Ballmer’s too busy filling out a refund form.”

    It’s more likely that Ballmer has his head stuck in his ass again and an emergency staff meeting has assembled with winches, rope and loud, moaning prayers.

    In Redmond, they call this “Casual Friday”.

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