There's a new Apple mac campaign out, it's got part of the "I'm a mac" recipe in that it uses a charming comedian to represent Apple, this time though he's an Apple Genius guy who even sleeps in his blue Apple T-shirt. There's something else too, unlike the "I'm a mac" past, this incarnation with stand-up comedian Josh Rabinowitz feels... what's the word.. A lot more smug. Judging by reactions, people in and outside of the industry aren't taking a liking to this guy at all. Why not? He's so very helpful that he'll remind you that you need to call an ambulance for your wife in labor while you make that extra pretty birth-announcement card with iPhoto. He'll help you even as he stands in line to the food truck, even if it's just to bring you down as what you bought was basically not a mac. He'll even rush around airplanes helping with anniversary iMovies and keynotes, like a blue-T-shirt clad superhero.
And that's probably why people aren't liking it. Unlike earlier mac ads, like the macbook air ad that showed how it easily fit in an envelope, this ad isn't showing off how easy, or how sleek a mac is. In fact it shows off how difficult a mac is. You need an apple genius at hand 24/7 to even print a card. He knows how to edit iMovie clips. He's the only guy in the world who doesn't hate iTunes.
Wait, aren't all of these programs the ones that were previously sold as "so simple" everyone could use it. It didn't take a genius? Why the sudden u-turn, Apple? I can see how the brief took them to this place, Apple stores have geniuses at hand that can and will help you with everything from sorting out your iphoto to tackling actual hardware issues. This must be mentioned in ads eventually, right? Most of them will do it with a healthy serving of "I know more than you" condescending 'tude on top, which is why this girl who isn't afraid of building her own servers and knows her way around a lot of computers, only goes to the genius stores where they don't patronize out of habit. (Protip: avoid the ones in malls). But this is all wrong, suddenly macs can actually be compared straight to a PC - you have now entered the ad-battle on software alone. It used to be that Mac vs PC was a fallacy in that one of them was a restaurant and one was a supermarket. You could create the same end result with the stuff found in the supermarket if you were a great geek, but most people aren't so they opted for the restaurant where they ordered up a super-thin laptop with all the fixings already installed inside. Now they might avoid it because of the snooty service. Try again, Media Arts lab.
Apple Genius - Mayday - man has an anniversary and nothing to show his wife. Apple genius guy to the rescue.
Apple - Labor day - So this mans wife is in labor, and he needs a fancy birthday announcement.
Apple - basically - So basically this guy basically didn't get a mac at all.