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Breaking Down an Apple Keynote Address: 3 Lessons for Marketers

Breaking Down an Apple Keynote Address: 3 Lessons for Marketers (Source: Cropped from Flickr User Mike Deerkoski)

The black stage. The mammoth presentation screen. The speakers striding confidently back and forth, clickers in hand. The massive crowd of rabid fanboys and girls and the thousands of reporters and developers watching along at home.

We guess you already know what we’re describing: An Apple keynote event.

The company’s annual presentation is inevitably one of the highlights of the year for the tech world.

The hype surrounding the tiniest of Apple announcements is enormous. Even now, fan blogs and news sites alike are speculating about when this year’s Worldwide Developer’s Conference (WWDC) is coming (probably the week of June 13) and what will be unveiled (iOS 10? A new smartwatch?).

Last year’s WWDC and keynote – which included the announcement of Apple Music and some big refinements to Apple Maps and Siri – was breathlessly dissected by tech blogs for weeks.

Of course, the Tim Cook-era Apple is a little less flashy than the company’s time under Steve Jobs. Those keynote speeches – recently chronicled by screenwriter Aaron Sorkin and director Danny Boyle in the film Steve Jobs – were enormous. Picture the Rolling Stones, U2, and Jay Z throwing a concert together and you might get an idea. For many, seeing Jobs speak was a transcendent experience.

And though very few of our businesses will ever reach the stratospheric heights of Apple, there are a few things Cook and his cohorts do to create buzz for their keynotes that we can all learn from.

Here are three lessons your business can learn from an Apple keynote event…

Craft a Compelling Brand Story

Apple and its products are iconic to the point of being mythical. Whether it’s the inspiring advice to “Think Different” or the sleek designs of its mobile devices, Apple has one of the most concrete and effective brand narratives in the tech industry.

And while you may not attain the ubiquity of Apple, you should have a brand story of your own. Find what makes your service unique and spread the word across social media. Give your users an inside look at your process. Create a distinctive brand that will stick out in your readers’ imaginations, and you can create a loyal, engaged fanbase of your own.

Content, Content, Content

When Jobs, Cook, or any other speakers take the stage for Apple, we can promise you that they’re coming prepared. While flashy, Apple presentations are always substantive, full of the sort of announcements, news, and demonstrations that consumers can’t find anywhere else.

Your site should work the same way, full of diverse, high quality content that readers can easily find and that they’ll enjoy reading and sharing. Just as Apple draws in an audience with news and celebrity guests, you can appeal to your readers with well-written, well-designed, and frequently updated articles and multimedia posts.

Without apps, an iPhone is just an empty shell. Your business’ site works the same way. Fill it with likable, informative content, and it becomes more than just a quick stop or a shopping cart; it becomes a vital, familiar part of your users’ day.

Spread the Word With Social Media

Apple’s addresses go out to only a roomful of people, but its announcements are heard around the world thanks to word of mouth. People tweet, like, and share news about Apple across blogs, sites, and social media, helpfully turning their in-person event into a global web phenomenon.

And while you may not have the reach of a behemoth like Apple, it’s still crucial to make social marketing and PR the backbone of your digital marketing strategy.  

Maintain social pages for your business across a variety of networks, including Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn. Interact with your client base and other businesses by sharing others’ work alongside your own quality content. Experiment with using images and posting at different times of day to maximize your reach. And if it’s in your budget, don’t be afraid to try out social advertising with helpful, affordable platforms like Facebook Ads.

Apple doesn’t just put out a press release and call it a day; instead, they promote their content to get their users excited and eager to share. Take a cue from their book, and you can help make the organic buzz of social media a great resource for driving traffic – and new customers – to your site.

Ready to launch a digital marketing campaign of your own? Looking to make the most of Apple and Google products for your business? We’d love to help! Drop Geek a line for all of your digital marketing and technology needs.

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Jason Finn

Founder & Chief Geek

Jason has nearly 20 years of consulting experience, predominantly in the technology space. Most recently he was the COO and Director of Technology for Rich Casto & Company, a national training and consulting organization in the real estate industry.
As a consultant for IBM, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, and Envision Consulting Group (now IMS Health), Jason has served clients of all sizes, including Big Pharma, Fortune 500, and Global 1000 companies:

  • Allstate Insurance Company
  • AOL (America Online)
  • Astellas Pharmaceuticals
  • Eli Lilly and Company
  • Ford Motor Credit
  • Wockhardt USA (formerly Morton Grove Pharmaceuticals)
  • Norwich Union
  • PNC Bank
  • Reynolds and Reynolds

Sarunas Budrikas

Creative Director

Sarunas is a web design and development expert with hundreds of successful projects in his portfolio. He is passionate about delivering extraordinary user experiences for every client and consistently goes above and beyond everyone’s expectations. As an SEO expert and strategist, he can optimize your website, or app, to get the most out of it, day in and day out. Sarunas holds a degree in Electrical Engineering from Kaunas Technology University, in Lithuania. Sarunas now lives in Chicago, and calls it home.

Alexandra Olsavsky

Client Experience Specialist

Alex specializes in content generation and social media promotion for Geek | Chicago clients, helping to solidify their presence in the online community. This includes blog writing, graphic design, co-ordination and design of weekly newsletters, and active engagement on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn. Outside of Geek, Alex is a classically-trained soprano who professionally performs around the city of Chicago (most recently with the Chicago Baroque Band, and with the Rolling Stones for their "50 and Counting" tour).