I recently attended a meeting for product development of a technological product. There were representatives from different desciplines including program management, software development, business management and product design. Twenty people, all with their laptop open, were sitting in a conference room. Most of the participants were meeting people from other deciplines for the first time. The meeting organizer comes in the room and before the introductions could start, pointed at three folks in the room and said: “You must be designers.” “Bingo!” came the reply.
How did that person, or for that matter all others in the room, know that they were designers? They were the only ones carrying Apple macbooks in a room full of Microsoft Windows running laptops!
This is a typical case of targeting the niche, and Apple does it with ultimate perfection. Like any other niche marketing effort, Apple as well gets the pros of targeting the niche. You will hardly find any designer, artist or the likes carrying anything but a mac. Mac has a die-hard following and a strong cult continuously growing around it. At the same time there are cons to the approach. There are millions of people who do not want to be associated with this cult and go for the alternatives.
But there is something bigger going on here with respect to this cult. What do the young masses in their late teens and early twenties think about carrying a macbook? For most of them, a macbook provides everthing they need from a computer and carrying it gives them a way to join this “cool” cult. If you believe that’s the future, Apple has found a pretty good route to target the mainstream…