Why Apple’s iPhone Advertising Campaign is Mad Brilliant

On June 29th, Apple will launch their next great evolution. The iPhone will hit Apple and AT&T Wireless stores with great hoopla at 6:00 p.m. and the world market for handheld devices will change again. This is what Apple does -- change market dynamics.

But there's raw beauty in the iPhone campaign that comes from lessons learned over the last decade of Apple advertising. This is as unadulterated a product marketing mix as I've seen in the market in very long time, and the point it serves to prove is thus: EB White had it right -- "Simplify, simplify, simplify."

The "Switch" campaign was considered (mostly by me) to be a critical success and a business non-starter. But it was the first time that Apple attempted to tell their story transparently, and that was an important move. It taught them the power of the unadulterated user's voice, the untarnished message. They were already making powerful, beautiful products. The "Switch" campaign sold the experience, sort of.

The iPod "Sillouhette" campaign drove the message further, selling the outcomes of the experience, linking the product to the feeling you get when you use it. It was beautiful and compelling and engaging, and sold the experience, sort of.

The iPhone capitalizes on everything the first two campaigns delivered so well, and drives the messaging completely naked. The broadcast advertising is nothing more than a screencast on using features of the product. Their print and outdoor focus on dates. Their 25 minute introduction to iPhone uses Young Steve Jobs to deliver transparent, real world use cases to demonstrate the device.

All this is to say one thing: tell your story. Rely less on agency steerage and paranoia and more on your own instinct. You're the only one that knows your customer the way you know your customer. The closer you get to mirroring their experience in your messaging, the closer you'll get to communicating your product or service to the unititiated.

Stick to the simple truth.