Are you amazed like I am at all of the recent headlines about Apple’s new goliath? One person actually stood in line for 44 hours to salvage his marriage by getting his upset wife the newest product from Apple; whether she needed it or not. Then, there is the young man, while showing off his purchase to a newscaster, promptly dropped it on the ground. Time and time again, we let our accessories get the best of us and Apple caters to that need.
“A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.”
So Why Do We Do It?
One of Apple’s greatest strengths is their world-class customer service. Apple does not just sell products; they also stand behind them one-hundred and ten percent. All Apple employees, especially Apple’s technical support employees or “geniuses,” will gladly go above and beyond for their customers. They will not only ensure that the customers’ products are in perfect working order, but also that the customers are satisfied and that they understand how to utilize all of the products’ features. For this reason, Apple products are very popular among less technologically savvy customers.
A large portion of Apple’s continued success can be attributed to their retail presence. Most other computer manufacturers such as Hewlett Packard, ASUS, and Lenovo to name a few, do not have their own retail stores. Instead, they rely on large retailers such as Best Buy and P.C. Richard to sell their products. From a cost perspective, this is a smart move since the manufacturers do not need to worry about incurring all of the costs associated with running a retail operation, which can be quite substantial. The downside is that the employees of the retailer are generally trained on the superficial use of all of the products that they sell. At the Apple store, sales representatives have extensive knowledge about all of their products and are prepared to answer any and all questions.
When customers purchase an Apple product, they receive the product of course, but they also receive a membership pass to an elite social club. Apple’s marketing strategy and products are specifically tailored to make customers feel like they are a part of something larger. For example, when iPhone users text each other, their outgoing messages appear blue, whereas when an iPhone user texts a non-iPhone user, their outgoing messages appear green. Seeing a blue message indicates to the sender that the recipient has something in common with them and strengthens both users’ senses of community. This can make it much more difficult for a customer to switch to another brand because switching will also mean giving up their membership in Apple’s community.
Like Apple, Cerini & Associates, LLP was founded on the basis of strong client relations. We also focus on building relationships with clients that extend far beyond balance sheets and tax returns – a vision that continues to guide the way we do business today.
Jacob Lutz, CPA
Jacob joined Cerini & Associates in January of 2013 and has been actively providing tax, compliance, and business advisory services to a wide variety of both for-profit and non-profit clients.