Apple goes social

Mega brand Apple decided to get on the ‘gram recently in an unprecedented move that didn’t turn out to be what everyone thought it was going to be.

The tech giants move to recently embrace social media has got many critics calling out their efforts as underwhelming for lack of a better word.

Their reason? Instead of crafting compelling content with social at its core, Apple has taken a more conservative approach and extended its existing #shotoniphone campaign onto the photo-sharing  app.

But let’s be honest, which other brand in the world can build a half a million following with 12 uploaded photos?

To get the juice on what Apple is in fact doing right, MARKETING reached out to two industry experts (and made sure to not spark any fiery debates along the way).

Freda Kwok, Partner and Senior Consultant, QED, Singapore

“Successes on social media is largely driven by content democracy, where the public decides what to amplify through sharing and engagement within communities.

“It is the brands that have been able to effectively add value to consumers that stand out and enjoy these successes.”

Here, Apple’s strategy is in building a community of like-minded individuals, boosted by the fulfilment of self-actualization and meeting their esteem needs when their work gets featured.

It cleverly meets the needs that are more highly regarded and harder to achieve, thus potentially resonating stronger with the community.

In fact, with so much content being created around Apple, especially pertaining to photography on Instagram, the brand is being resourceful by tapping on this availability.

By performing the role of a community aggregator & curator, they are being consumer-centric – putting their consumers first and in the spotlight. And this is another mark of a well planned social media strategy.”

Jui Hong Teoh, Managing Director, BRANDTHINK Malaysia

“I have worked with Apple for many years in the previous decade as one of their marketing agencies here in Malaysia, and this is what I know about them.

They have built a very strong marketing machine that is disciplined and bold. I think it’s premature to judge what Apple does.

Many have done so countless of times, and more times than not, proven wrong on hindsight. The issue lies with every expert wanting Apple to behave exactly like how their worldview demands.

If Apple doesn’t do that, they are often showered with criticism of conservatism etc. But hindsight will tell you that Apple isn’t conservative. They are calculated.

Truth is, every business is different and should apply their marketing accordingly.

Does Apple really need to post anything on social media, considering that the mere act of creating an account that is empty would already generate volumes of interest and millions of followers? No brand on earth could do that at this point in time.”


For the seventh year running, we are bringing back the famous Best of Global Digital Marketing Conference to KL with a special focus on Content Marketing this year. Unique case-study based learning, as our team monitors over 200 digital marketing award shows across the globe and interviews the winners. Based on this extensive work, we produce in-depth case studies.

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The APPIES is an annual event that presents a rare opportunity for creative, media, digital and marketing agencies or brands to present their best campaigns to the industry.

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Similar to TED Talks, The APPIES is the chance for great presenters with outstanding work to show it off to some of the industry’s most important industry leaders.

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APPIES Festival – Judging & Presentations
11th – 12th July 2024 (Malaysia)


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