Ken Segall, author of Insanely Simple and branding/creative ad guy that worked with Apple on some of their bigger projects (the Think Different campaign and naming the iMac) doesn’t like the new Mac ads:
Sure, Apple has had a low point or two in its advertising past — but its low points are usually higher than most advertisers’ high points.
This is different. These ads are causing a widespread gagging response, and deservedly so. I honestly can’t remember a single Apple campaign that’s been received so poorly.
Initially I was in the camp of thinking that these ads aren’t targeted to me as a Apple fan so don’t worry about it:
The people who are complaining the loudest about the new Genius ads already own Apple products.
It's not about you. At all.
— Craig Hockenberry (@chockenberry) July 28, 2012
But upon second (and third) viewing, I’m starting to think these aren’t a great way to tell the story of the Apple Genius available in Apple’s retail stores – particularly in that they, as Segall states in his article, make customers seem so clueless:
Therein lies another problem with this campaign. In the effort to show that the Genius is the most helpful guy in the world, Apple has created customers who, shall we say, are on the dim side. In past ads, Apple has shown “ordinary people doing extraordinary things,” simply because Apple products are so easy to use. Now we have thick people who want to be better, but need a Genius to help. Not exactly flattering.
It feels a lot more like “The Dell Guy” than an Apple campaign.
The new Apple ads are good. But Apple ads are supposed to be great, and that is why the new Apple ads suck.
— Adam Lisagor (@adamlisagor) July 29, 2012