MacWorld's editor has confused Apple with Twitter

From David Price's "Apple can learn an important lesson from Twitter about loyalty" posted Sunday:

For a tech journalist, there is a morbid fascination with the slow-motion car crash currently taking place at Twitter HQ. The incoming owner is discovering to his cost that loyalty, from both employees and users, takes a long time to earn and a very short time to lose.

One would guess that billionaires are at a disadvantage when it comes to grasping the nature and limitations of loyalty, given how rarely they need to call up a mate and ask for bail money or a lift to the airport at short notice. But the truth is that loyalty is both weirdly resilient and alarmingly fragile. Like so many things, loyalty runs out gradually, then very suddenly.

Apple is hardly likely to nosedive as badly as Twitter, not least because it’s run by an altogether less erratic leadership team. (It’s hard to imagine Tim Cook tanking the stock price because he couldn’t resist posting a sick meme.) But I do hope someone at Cupertino is paying attention to Twitter, because Apple is taking similar risks with its users’ loyalty, and stands to lose far more.

Apple depends on buy-in from customers far more than any of its close rivals. While other companies built their business models around advertising and data collection, or on selling hardware with the best specs or the lowest prices, Apple focused on the experience. Its products are very popular and often excellent, but more importantly, you’re buying a lifestyle too.

My take: Not Price's strongest piece. Does he really believe that Apple's business model is selling a "lifestyle"? Apparently so...

The occasionally cult-like tendencies exhibited by Apple and its fans can grate at times, but that unusually user-focused business model—which depends above all on convincing customers that Apple is cool and ethical and you’re cool and ethical for buying its products—incentivizes behavior you wouldn’t expect from other companies.

But he's right about the tech press' morbid fascination with Twitter's slow-motion car crash.

7 Comments

  1. Brian Loftus said:
    He really thinks 50% plus of Americans are using Apple because of a lifestyle choice? How about best option and usually cheapest option (on a per day basis). I type this as I look at the 2012 iMac that is going to be replaced because it is losing Microsoft Office 365 support. Oldest Windows machines in the office last 4 years.

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    November 21, 2022
  2. Romeo A Esparrago Jr said:
    I don’t like it when the words cult & fanboy are associated with . It implies blind worship.
    The truth is loyalty and trust exists between  and its Customers. And it’s bi-directional.
    I agree that the MacWorld editor has it confused and backwards.

    “ Elon can learn a thing or two about loyalty from Apple” should be the title.

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    November 21, 2022
  3. Fred Stein said:
    Price is complete wrong. Apple has been gaining new users in every product category. Apple tells that in every quarterly report. That’s not cult-like loyalty. It proves Apple’s better value, Apple’s dedicated to “make the best” as Tim Cook has said many times.

    Agree with Romeo on words like cult and fanboy. Price does not think, just repeats buzzwords and catch-phrases that have been proven wrong.

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    November 21, 2022
  4. Robert Paul Leitao said:
    Apple is selling a lifestyle? What lifestyle is it? I was at an Apple retail store yesterday picking up a MagSafe charger and a USB-C power adapter. I didn’t see anything else in the little bag. Maybe it’s some kind of invisible thing. Does this lifestyle come with AppleCare+? What’s the trade-in value of a pre-owned Apple lifestyle if I want an upgrade in a year or two? I mean… that would be cool but maybe not. I thought I bought Apple products because they let me be me. Is that a lifestyle? I don’t know. Apple products just work. That’s why I buy them. Is that a lifestyle? I don’t know. I was just buying a MagSafe charger and a USB-C adapter. I expect them to work. Is that a lifestyle?

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    November 21, 2022
    • Fred Stein said:
      Yes Robert “apple = lifestyle” is another trope disproved long ago.

      Mr. Price like many others fails to understand cause vs. effect. Apple works super hard to make the best products and to keep consistent design principles. They fiercely defend their logos, copyrights, designs. Those principles are THE cause of the effect of consumer loyalty. Those principles make Apple’s brand so iconic, that ads need few words. Apple ads use lifestyle to engage consumers emotionally. But if the products weren’t great, ads would do little and Apple would not be able to get new users globally.

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      November 21, 2022
  5. Jonny T said:
    Imbecilic article. Price would have you believe that it is us the customers who create the magic…

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    November 21, 2022
  6. Neal Guttenberg said:
    All companies depend on buy in from their customers. It is not just Apple. Apple has just been more successful in an area where there have been huge profits. To relegate it to something of a “fanboi” status is a cheap shot. Relegating it all to a “lifestyle” choice also cheapens the choice that people make. Part of Apple’s appeal is that it is one of the brands to own. Speaks to some level of success by the user that they can afford Apple products. Why else did ear bud makers make their buds look like Air Pods. So there is some truth to this. But it is really only a smaller part of the overall picture that you miss if you subscribe to these theories. I like having my Apple Watch being able to wake up my MacBook. I like my pictures being accessible from my phone and laptop and iPad. I like being able to use an iMac for 10 years before having to replace it. My MacBook Pro is currently 5+ years and doing well and able to get the current system upgrades. Having these things, among many others, is what is drawing me and other people to Apple.

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    November 21, 2022

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