When brands overstep the mark


This week Apple made the headlines by uploading U2’s latest album to millions of phones and iPods around the world as part of their new product launches (iPhone 6 and Apple Watch).

Today it was revealed by Billboard that Apple is reportedly pouring at least $100 million into a campaign around the band’s newest release. Yet, it seems the marketing push may have backfired following a negative response from millions of music fans worldwide.

Intimate or invasive

Consumers are increasingly open to the use of technology to give them faster access to the products that they want. However, the issue lies with consent, and large swathes of the 500 million iTunes users took to social media to complain that apple had overstepped the mark, perceiving that their computers had been infected with unwanted spam.

This comes just a week after Apple’s iCloud made headlines when a considerable number of naked celebrity photos were apparently stolen from the platform and leaked online.

Reduced reputation

The upshot of this is that Apple has barely been out of the news for the past fortnight, and I am sure that this will have little lasting impact on their reputation.

However, this sends a clear warning to brands to that they should consider the expectations of their customers before enacting potentially invasive campaigns. Know the boundaries and don’t overstep them – especially when the wider media are questioning whether some of your leading products are fit for purpose.

Meanwhile, I will leave you with the wily Samsung’s reaction to the failure of Apple’s #AppleLive stream, which crashed during the launch of their iPhone6 and Apple Watch – a great piece of brand hijacking:


2 thoughts on “When brands overstep the mark

  1. And even worse, for some of us who might have liked to download the album from iTunes, it was NOT pre-loaded in my iTunes music files — and when I tried to download it, it told me my PC was not authorized to download music. That’s B.S.! I checked my iTunes account and the account page said my PC was indeed authorized. I’ve been a user for years.I don’t know what Apple is pulling here, but this has really ticked me off. The only good news is that all the reviews of the new U2 album say it sucks. They’ve always been a favorite band of mine, but if the quality is as poor as the reviews say, I don’t even want this for free.

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