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ATPM 3.10
October 1997



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On a Clear Day, You Can See the Hollywood Sign

by Mike Shields,

Today, I'm troubleshooting a Mac (after all, it is what they pay me for) and the user asks me how to order a machine with Windoze 95[TM]. Without missing a beat, I answered, "Get a Mac."

I recently sent the following e-mail to Steve "I'm going to drop interim from my title as soon as I return from Hawaii" Jobs:

While your confidence in the new Think different campaign is admirable, I feel it is sorely misplaced. Taken on it's own, it is quite impressive. However, when compared to the recent MMX and Intel inside ads, it falls miserably short, IMNERHO. The all flash no substance style of them makes them stand out in a crowd of soft drink and detergent spots.

I think you and your friends at Chiat/Day need to go head to head with this style of advertising. I haven't come up with specific ideas beyond the following phrase: Get a Mac. While "Think Different" might've been a viable alternative to 1984 back in 1984, in 1997, it just doesn't make it.

Thanks for your time and your continued good work.

I closed this message with my standard signature (which some have called "overly bloated"), wherein I ask for $600K for my film. I'm still waiting for those checks, BTW.

I've yet to hear back from Mr. Jobs. In the meantime, I have come up with a dynamite ad. Tonight I discovered another reason why the current Think different campaign isn't going to make it. The product isn't mentioned in the ad. Sure, the Apple logo comes up at the end, but if you're in the kitchen getting a Dr. Pepper from the 'frig, you have no clue what they're talking about.

The solution? Picture the following: Bob and Jim live next door to each other. Bob, the smart one, has ignored the glitz and glamour of the Intel Inside ads and owns a Mac. Jim says he's off to the local Superstore to get the latest and greatest they have to offer. Bob just smiles and goes off to his golf game.

At the Superstore, the salesman outfits Jim with all the latest PC hardware and software. Back at home, he struggles to get the computer set up and working.

About this time, Bob returns from his golf game. Jim goes outside to brag about his big purchase. His last line is, "...and it cost me only..." A dramatic pause allows Bob to pull out his invoice (conveniently stashed inside his golf bag) for Jim to look at. "...more, than your Mac." finishes a confused Jim, as Bob goes inside with a smile on his face. The voice over announcer says (I suggest the guy from the Visa commercials. You know, the one that says, "...and they don't take American Express!"), "When it comes to buying a computer, the choice is simple. Get a Mac." Bring up the Apple logo over a confused Jim staring at invoices. Thirty seconds, and you're out.
The "Get a Mac." slogan can be used in numerous places: Bumper Stickers, Screen Savers, Startup screens, Websites, and even other commercials. How many of you remember the famous William Shatner "Get a Life!" speech from Saturday Night Live? Apple could do a parody and not have to change too much. After all, they hired Richard Dreyfuss to voice over the Think Different campaign, didn't they? Well, Captain Kirk has more name recognition (and he probably wouldn't cost as much).

I'll recap for those readers who don't remember or are too young to stay up that late. William Shatner, speaking at a Star Trek convention, criticizes Trekkies and Trekkers alike for their extreme fanaticism bordering on insanity and encourages them to "Get a Life!" The beauty of this idea is that you could use almost the same audience, changing only the last words of the speech to "Get a Mac!"

So, what do we do this month? Same as last month, really. As long as we don't have Mr. Visa to tell us to "Get a Mac," we have to tell others ourselves. When someone asks you what computer to buy, you'll be ready. Three simple words. Use them often.

72 and sunny in El Segundo.

e Ya next month.

Blue AppleDisclaimer: Mike gets lonely, so if you hear something radically differentpertaining to either the Mac or the Entertainment Industry, or both, he can be reached at <> (and he still needs lots o' money to make his film).

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