Apple’s customers are probably some of the most loyal out there. But why is that and what can businesses learn from one of the most valuable companies in the world?
Since the introduction of the new iPhones early this month, Apple has been over the news. And there certainly are a few things we can take from the keynote to explain why Apple products are popular and why the brand has got more loyal customers than other big brands.
The most important basis for customer loyalty is your brand and Apple is no exception there. Experts argue that Apple didn’t get big because of their technology, but because of their strong brand, which stands for imagination, design and innovation. Customers are emotionally involved with Apple products, which is exactly what you want for building great customer relationships and loyalty. In their keynote, Tim Cook, CEO, proudly announced that Apple has become the number two watch brand since the release of the first Apple Watch a year ago. That of course would not have been possible, if they didn’t already have a strong brand and positioning in other industries.
2 Minimalistic design
Apple likes to keep things as simple as possible – something that customers certainly appreciate. Whether it’s hardware or software, Apple products use minimalistic design to make them easy to use. With the new iPhones, they stick to their vision and removed the manual “home button”. Instead, it will be working by touch force, which is already used for the MacBooks. But not just Apple’s products follow this strategy.
Apple’s product packaging is just as minimalistic as their products, but it is efficient as well. Sometimes this makes us wonder how much they can fit into that little box the iPhone comes in. And the hype around Apple packaging has gone big since unboxing videos became popular. Apple is the most popular brand for unboxing videos in their industries. And there already are a few online for the new iPhone 7. See for yourself just how simple Apple’s packaging is for the new iPhones.
Apple is a master at creating their own net of hardare and software, only compatible with their own products. Apple argues they always strive to make the best of the best, but this strategy has another welcomed side-effect: it’s hard to leave Apple behind, once you’ve bought their products. Of course, the majority of customers probably don’t intend to abandon Apple products (Apple regularly ranks first in customer satisfaction surveys). Yet, those who do, will find it difficult. Which makes one wonder: is this a main reason for Apple’s high customer loyalty? At this month’s keynote, Apple made a move that is underlining the compatibility argument.
The most discussed topic from Apple’s keynote
Apple removed the headphone jack on the soon to be released iPhone 7. Customers will now have to use the lightning port to use headphones. Although they will include an adapter in every iPhone packaging, the uproar on social media was massive. Since Apple invented the lightning port, their headphones can’t be used on other devices and headphones that don’t have a lightning jack, can’t be used on Apple devices without an adapter. But what is probably the most criticized issue about the missing port, is that you can’t charge your iPhone whilst listening to music. The newly introduced AirPods may solve the problem, but they come at a hefty price. The wireless headphones will be sold for £159 later this year.
As usual, Apple’s keynote created some controversy in the press and on social media. Is the company abusing the loyalty they built? Or will their strategy pay off and convince customers what’s best for them? We’ll have to wait and see what the future holds.
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