I love this Apple iPad 2 tv ad. It’s not only beautiful and emotional, it sells without seeming to sell. How do they DO that? What can you learn from this ad that will help you write for your company? I’m not just talking sales sheets or offer e-mails, I’m talking all the marketing materials that support your brand: website copy, letters to prospective clients, case studies, etc.
Apple answers the question: how can I help you?
Jane used to own a clothing boutique in Chicago, and recently wrote about a former sales associate who hated to sell. I’ll let you read the whole story here, but the gist of the story is that the salesperson felt like she was bothering people when they came in the store.
Jane showed her how she “sold” a customer by first hanging back, then eventually engaging her in a conversation about what she was shopping for. Jane found out that the customer was nervous about finding an outfit for a work dinner with her husband, and then helped her find something that made her feel great.
The sales associated said, “I get it. It’s really not about me SELLING them anything. It’s about fixing their problem.”
Apple does the same thing. Not that it’s a “problem” to use a paper cookbook in the kitchen, but wouldn’t it be cool to have access to every recipe from every cookbook and website and flip through them in the kitchen while you cook? If you love taking movies of your kids, wouldn’t you love it more if you could edit them with sophisticated software right away?
Apple shows its product in everyday situations, with people doing ordinary things, just a little…better. It’s showing how the iPad helps enhance people’s daily lives.
Focus on the audience
Yes, Apple shows how cool its product is. But the context is the audience. Does the ad mention technical specs? Talk about how the iPad is “a cutting-edge technology” (the dreaded marketing speak). Not once.
Apple speaks to its audience, which is pretty varied. There are many ways to segment an audience — age, sex, location, or for B2B, job title — but using a psychographic is one of the most effective. A psychographic profile lumps different people together by a common point of view.
For example, Apple’s psychographic might be “people who like to weave new technology into everyday tasks.” I’m sure there’s a lot more to Apple’s psychographic than that, but can you see how once you figure out your audience’s wants and needs you can create materials to address those needs?
How can you reach your audience better?
Apple’s a world-class brand spending millions on branding firms, marketers, writers and ad space. Still, you can learn a lot from how they approach selling.
It’s answering the question “how can I help you?” for a specific audience.
Who is your audience, specifically? Does your copy show how you can help them?