Apple Launch Update and their Social Hype

Did you catch the Apple update yesterday? Chances are your social media feed was full of Apple updates – no one does a big tech launch quite like it in terms of generating online hype prior to the big reveal. The big news was the launch of not one but two new smartphones; the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus as well as the long anticipated Apple Watch. applewatch

The device aims to change the way we communicate by sending and receiving messages, answering calls made to your iPhone, and sharing personalised health information, and is, according to Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook, “the most personal product we’ve ever made.” Would we wear it? We’re not convinced. Yet. Which was an opinion we, of course, shared via our Twitter feed.

While we are Huge Apple Geeks at South Coast Social, it wasn’t so much the individual product launches but the social hype that Apple generates that never fails to impress us. Within seconds of each announcement, the hashtags #Apple, #iPhone6 and #AppleWatch were all immediately trending worldwide. Blogs fought with each other to get their posts up first and tweets were being bombarded from journalists and fans live from the press launch in California to a world waiting to receive, digest, comment and pass on to others. As a brand whose avoidance of engagement with social media is legendary, they generate the levels of social hype that PR agencies dream of creating – but how? Here’s our thoughts.

  1. The products themselves – almost everyone has a mobile device and these are *arguably* the most covetable device around, thanks to their sleek branding, position in the smartphone market and ease of use. They have been the ‘must-have’ phone for many for years, which naturally makes the launch of each one an anticipated event. This is turn generates the vast press coverage that is also shared socially.
  2. Their price point – with prices starting at £539 for the most basic model, they have the cachet of a luxury item which adds to their appeal.
  3. Their brand advocates – Apple fans are a truly dedicated cult following and will defend their devices against the Android marauders at length. A quick scan down the #iPhone6 trend last night on Twitter brought a variety of opinions
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    – all leading to increased coverage for the brand.

  4. As they are not active on any of their own social channels and their communications are generally clouded in an air of mystery, this adds to the online speculation with little ‘official’ updates as to upcoming news before the launch of each new product or software. This strategy owes much to the culture created at Apple by Steve Jobs, where a powerful simplicity surrounds their messaging and this helps generate the online hype of each launch by brand advocates.

 

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Whether it’s a carefully crafted marketing decision to let everyone else do the talking or a gradual culmination of the secretive culture that has evolved regarding their PR, the coverage an Apple launch generates socially is second to none.

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