Apple vs. Everyone Else: Are Ads the Key to Success?

Which smartphone is the best? That’s been the million dollar question since Apple first launched the iPhone in 2007 and forever changed the standard for mobile phones. Since then, brands such as Samsung, HTC, and Motorola have tried to answer this question with some pretty impressive designs.  Even though these brands may have the same, if not better features than the iPhone, Apple still reigns supreme in the smartphone market. How do you even compete with a brand as beloved as Apple? The answer is quite simple: you take a page out of Apple’s book and create an ad that highlights all of your competitor’s shortcomings.

For three and a half years, Apple fiercely convinced the general public that a Mac computer was far superior to a Windows PC through a total of sixty-six commercials.  Each ad featured well-known actor, Justin Long, as the cool, hip Mac computer while conversely portraying the PC as a more formal, suit and tie individual.  The main point of these commercials was to emphasize weaknesses in PC’s and highlight all of Apple’s best features.  Not only were the commercials a hit with the general public, but they also solidified the idea that Apple would always be the superior brand for computers.

Five days ago, Samsung premiered a new commercial for their newest smartphone, the Galaxy S3. The entire commercial, spanning one and a half minutes, essentially diminished all of the new features of the iPhone 5. For every “new” feature the iPhone 5 offered up, the Galaxy S3 countered with bigger and better ones. After viewing this commercial, one might start to question whether or not the iPhone 5 is really all that it’s cracked up to be. If you were to do some research, you would find that multiple technology sites named Samsung’s Galaxy S3 as the clear winner for the best smartphone of 2012 over Apple’s iPhone 5. While many other sites proclaim the iPhone 5 to be the superior choice, it’s not hard to see that the Galaxy S3 performs just as well if not better than the iPhone 5. But will Samsung’s Galaxy S3 outsell the iPhone 5? Probably not.

So why is the iPhone still the reigning champion of cell phones among consumers? It begs the question: is Apple indeed the superior brand or do they just have a stellar marketing team with brand name advantage? You decide.

Nicole Betterbid, Rachel Betterbid, Lucy Rojo, Shauna Seaver, Sierra Scellato