Apple’s new Mac commercials, which aired during the Olympics, haven’t exactly received favourable reviews so far. Now, even one of Apple’s former advertising gurus is slamming the company for the ads.”These ads are causing a widespread gagging response, and deservedly so,” Ken Segall, a former creative director of the advertising firm TBWA/Chiat/Day, wrote on his website Monday. “I honestly can’t remember a single Apple campaign that’s been received so poorly.”
Segall knows a thing or two about what makes a good Apple advertisement. He worked with Steve Jobs for more than 12 years both at Apple and NeXT and helped produce some of Apple’s best-known ads. He also is the one who came up with the iMac name.
In his blog post, Segall says the ads look more like something Best Buy or Dell would have produced, rather than Apple. Apple, he suggests, never resorts to making characters out of its own employees—as it does with the Genius Bar tech-support guy in these commercials.
What’s more, Segall argues that the ads end up making Apple customers look “dim” because they can’t do anything without the help of an Apple genius.
“Not exactly flattering,” Segall writes.
While some might argue that the commercials are geared more towards attracting new customers, rather than Apple’s existing fan base, Segall says the company should strive to make commercials that appeal to both.
“There’s no excuse for a campaign like that,” he writes. “Apple’s momentum is fuelled by the enthusiasm of its core customers. The last thing it wants is to win new customers at the cost of looking ridiculous to its enthusiastic supporters.”