There is a Facebook page for iPhone, and it has nearly 3.5 million fans. But it’s not run by Apple.
It’s a fan page. Apple doesn’t actually have a Facebook page for iPhone.
In fact, Apple’s presence on Facebook is inconsistent. There is a page for the App Store. And a (barely updated) page for Apple Inc. There is also a page for iTunes. The iTunes page has 32 million likes. But iPhone, the biggest consumer electronics brand in the world, has no official presence in the largest social media venue on the planet.
I was talking with a social media marketing executive recently, and he regarded this as madness. Facebook fanbases can become a huge asset to a company. They can be used for customer relations, or to show users how to do new things with existing products.
A Facebook page would be perfect for the iPhone — there are a gazillion functions on iPhone that most consumers don’t even know exist. And yet, Apple lets this vast reservoir go to waste.
There are two theories about this.
The first is that Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller doesn’t “get” social media. When Apple’s marketing division went through a crisis in 2013 — and the company began the process of looking beyond its longtime ad agency, TBWA Media Arts Lab — TBWA suggested that maybe Apple should at least begin monitoring social media, to see how its brand stacked up against rivals like Samsung over time.
Schiller saw no need for it. He told TBWA in an email:
I think paying money for social media tracking tools is nuts. It is easy to track social media, I do it every day, there are lots of summary feeds, groups, and notification tools built right in to the social networking sites, all free.
(i think the guys at samsung sat around a coffee table watching Twitter and Facebook feeds and didn’t need to pay for anything in the example below)
One might also say the idea of Schiller personally tracking Apple’s social media mentions himself is also kinda nuts. That would be a huge undertaking.
Social media is the most powerful new marketing tool of the current century. It can make or break companies and brands. Samsung launched the Galaxy SIII on Facebook, for instance. Most large companies have social media teams consisting of dozens of people, even when they’re only tracking consumer feedback.
From this perspective, Apple appears to be ignoring one of the best assets it has — its loyal army of fans. (And it’s not clear that Apple’s advertising has emerged from its own crisis, either.)
The second explanation is best summarized in this CNBC story about why Apple doesn’t have a Twitter account either. “Apple has nothing to gain by creating an account,” Belus Capital analyst Brian Sozzi told CNBC. “Apple isn’t going to be like Starbucks and run promoted tweets offering dollars off a product for a limited time. Apple is a premium experience all around, you go to Apple, they do not go to you.”
CNBC pointed out how disinterested Apple is in social media feedback by pointing to this YouTube video for one of its recent ads for iPad, which asks, “We’re humbled and inspired by what people do with iPad. So we set out to capture some of their stories. What will your verse be?”
Comments are disabled, and the link points to an Apple corporate page — that also does not allow comments.
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