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If we are to list the most successful companies in the world, it will come as no surprise when Apple Inc. makes its way to the top of the list. It’s easily one of the biggest and most recognizable names in the world when it comes to consumer electronics and tech products. A pioneer and pioneer in the field of technology, Apple is well versed in how to do business, and this is what we will try to examine in the discussion that follows.
In this article, you will find
1) the process of product development for Apple,
2) marketing practices of Apple and
3) Apple customer experience philosophy.
APPLE PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT PROCESS
We cannot talk about Apple’s business practice without going into its product development process. After all, Apple is in the business of developing consumer electronics products, most of which have become icons and largely responsible for the trends that follow in the field. By now more and more companies are coming forward, trying to find products that are loosely based on or inspired by Apple products, with the intention of competing with Apple.
Over the years, since Steve Jobs founded Apple and started implementing these Apple products, the company’s product development process has been the subject of much speculation. It’s not that the people inside Apple were crowded or kept everything under wraps. They just weren’t the type to discuss the process at length when they could just hang out in the product development room if there was even such a thing.
Fortunately, there have been several posts focused on Apple and its business philosophy, one of which is Adam Lashinsky’s “Inside Apple: How America’s Most Admired – And The Secret Company Really Works.” Through these pieces, we can get more than a fleeting glimpse of what it is inside Apple.
In the book, Apple’s product development process was discussed, and it can be summed up in eight stages.
It all starts with design. Apple products have already established a reputation for impeccable design based on simplicity, functionality, and a distinct design look. This is mainly due to the inventive and innovative minds of the members of the design team.
Apple’s industrial design machine is where brilliant ideas come from, and a big factor in its success is how consistent and disciplined it is by a department head. This is exactly how Steve Jobs started. He had the vision, and he led the design team toward realizing that vision, keeping them focused and on course toward their design goal.
Being kept out of other business divisions or departments has also helped a lot. This way, the design team was pretty much left to let their creative juices flow, without having to worry about other issues like finance, costs, and techniques. They wouldn’t even have to worry about whether the design can actually be done when it goes into production; that will be the problem of the engineers and the manufacturing people. Costs? They don’t have to worry about it either, because there are other people who will.
Keeping the design team small is also part of the strategy. You would think there would be more people involved in the design process, but one downside is having too many ideas that could derail the direction the design team planned to take from the start.
Having a small number of people involved in the design process also helps keep details about a new product shrouded in secrecy, something Apple is known for.
2. Creation of start-ups
The secret continues. Once a new product has been designed, a team dedicated exclusively to the development of that product will be formed. It is essentially a question of building a start-up within the company. They will devote all of their time and resources to the project or product, and they will report directly to the big bosses. This cuts down on the usual communication or bureaucracy involved, and they will not be accountable to anyone other than the management team.
What Apple does is assign specific rooms or even entire sections within the Apple complex where the startup will do its work, safely and without outside intrusions and other disruptions. In other circumstances, team members may even be expressly prohibited from communicating with other people – even within the company – regarding the product they are currently working on.
3. Implementation of the NP
This is where PANP – the process for new Apple products – comes in.
Ever since Apple started making the Macintosh, the company has always made it a point to have a well-researched roadmap or guide for team members to follow. It was the PANP. It is essentially a document that contains, in detail, all the stages and phases of the development of the product. It covers everything related to the development process, from the specific tasks that need to be performed, the specific people who will be working on it, the expected duration of each task, and the timeline or order of completion of said tasks to facilitate completion. product completion.
4. Product review
While it is true that the team is working towards achieving a vision or goal for a product, that does not mean that the process is fixed and has no room for change or flexibility. Just like in other companies, Apple also performs periodic reviews for products in production. In Apple’s case, these product reviews are done every Monday. This is a good way to track the progress of the product development team and to take note of any issues or serious issues that were encountered by the team in the process.
This is probably going to have a toll on a company that has a lot of products in the pipeline at one point. Fortunately, Apple doesn’t have too much of a problem with this, as it makes sure it only has a few products going, so things are kept at a more manageable level.
5. Production proper
Finally, the design will be made more concrete as the production process begins. Two key employees are involved in this step: engineers and refueling staff. You have someone in charge of the production process, who will handle the engineering aspect. It will work with sourcing responsible for sourcing raw materials necessary for the production process.
6. Testing, tweaking, reconstruction
Just because a product has undergone the production process does not mean that it is completely finished. It is always necessary to test it, so that adjustments can be made and, if necessary, the product will be rebuilt. Steve Jobs’ perfectionist attitude showed up in the way Apple relentlessly builds, tests, and rebuilds its products, until it is completely confident in its quality and performance, and gives it the green light to be introduced. on the market.
In the past, we’ve seen many iPhone models leak before release, only to make the end product look noticeably different from the leaked versions. This is because the leaks were often the initial versions, and the final version – the one that eventually hit the market – underwent various rebuilds and rebuilds after a series of tests were carried out.
Many companies are happy to test only once or twice and then release it to the market, even if they still have issues with some aspect of the product. This is because testing and rebuilding take a long time, not to mention money. Apple doesn’t let the cost affect their decision, however, preferring to test and rebuild as many times as possible until they get it right, and they come up with a product that they’re fully happy with.
First impressions last, and customers are drawn to the packaging first. This is why Apple devotes a lot of attention and resources to the packaging aspect. It’s not just about having a box with the company name and logo printed on it. The packaging also takes into account the customer experience when unpacking the device packaging.
8. Finally, the launch
Apple has the rules of the road, which is essentially a product launch an action plan. It details all the key points of the product development process, breaking them down into nutty. This document is so top-secret and highly regarded, and Apple takes it seriously when working on the new product launch.
APPLE MARKETING PRACTICES
Develop advertising campaigns. Complex websites and sales copies. Participation in print, broadcast, and online media. Press Releases. Call it, Apple did it. These are the usual marketing tactics and strategies often employed by businesses, and Apple uses them as well.
But Apple does it slightly differently. One of Apple’s hallmarks when it comes to design is simplicity, and it has applied this principle in its marketing as well.
Simplicity in marketing
To be more precise, Apple applies “simplicity of decision-making” in its marketing strategy. This makes sense, considering how the consumer market is inundated with tons of ads and marketing messages. If they stick to the usual routes, their marketing may be ignored or gone unnoticed.
Apple has steered away from complex marketing messages. In fact, if you notice how they craft their ads, they are considerably cleaner and simpler. Billboard ads are just as simple, often just with an image of the product and its name, as if you were saying the look and name explains it all.
They rarely even use actors, voiceovers, or endorsers to present the product. In one ad, they even used only a white backdrop to bring home the one point about the Apple product being better than the competition. It’s clean, it’s simple, it’s straight to the point, and it gets the message across. All other questions can be answered by contacting Apple’s separate information dissemination campaigns. Or, better yet, head to the nearest Apple store and see for yourself how the new product works.
Confidence in Marketing
Apple’s marketing brand is also showing its confidence in its products. They don’t need to list all of the product’s features on billboards or list them in their ads. They don’t even have to sing about the fact that they – Apple, the giant company that starts with the letter “A” – is the one introducing a new product. They have made themselves known before, and they are convinced that only the logo, or even the appearance of the new product, will immediately gain instant recognition for their business.
Again, as mentioned earlier, popular names and celebrities are not engaged to officially endorse the Apple product. Of course, influencers are used to help with marketing, but the ads themselves don’t use celebrity leverage.
THE “CUSTOMER EXPERIENCE PHILOSOPHY”
There is one keyword that will encapsulate the company’s ideals on the customer experience: APPLE. This basically encompasses the five service steps that are taken and implemented by every staff member at an Apple store.
A – Approach clients politely and give them a warm and personalized welcome
It is one of the fundamentals of retail and customer service. Greet your customers as soon as they walk into your store and they’ll feel more inclined to browse your products and spend money before they leave your store.
Apple insisted on the welcome being “warm” and “personalized”. There is a difference between a store clerk who just walks “Welcome” from behind a desk and an Apple store clerk who walks towards you as soon as you walk through the door, with a ready smile and a greedy expression on their face. . It’s a small thing, but it makes a lot of difference for any customer looking for something worth buying.
P – Probe politely in order to understand what the client’s needs are
It is one thing to let the customer walk around the store; in fact, stepping up and asking him what he needs or is looking for is another. There’s a fine line between being loud and probing politely, and the latter is what Apple tries to do its best.
P – Present a solution the customer can take home today
Customers are looking for immediate solutions, not something they have to come back for another day. They can easily tell when a store clerk knows what they’re talking about and if they can get the solution they’re looking for right now, or they should just take their concerns – and the money – elsewhere.
L – Listen to the customer and resolve any concerns or issues they may have
One of the things that customers love about going to any Apple store is because they can get hands-on interaction with the product, playing with the latest iPhone, or going through the features of the. the latest version of the iPad, with a store clerk on hand to answer all of your questions. This practice of Apple certainly allows its staff members to better present their products and show or demonstrate the solutions sought by customers.
E – End with an equally warm and personalized farewell, and invite the customer to come back
A common mistake salespeople make is not seeing their customers properly after making a sale. After all, they’ve already made a deal and made some money, so what else is left?
Just as warmly as you’ve greeted customers, it’s also important to say goodbye to them properly, with an invitation to return to the store for more transactions in the future. Not only will you have satisfied customers, but also potential customers.
You will notice that the 5 steps are already nothing new when it comes to providing customer service. However, many retail stores fail to run them. Apple retail stores go to great lengths and extra effort to complete the 5 steps, and that’s a big part of why it has the loyal customer base it has today.
We can note two underlying principles in Apple’s product development process – and how it does business as a whole. One is quality above all, and the other is responsibility.
Apple refuses to cut corners just to cut costs. So what if it will take time, or if it will require more financial expenditure? It doesn’t even matter that they have to get more people to work on a project or product, as long as they get the results they want. They also don’t mind training their employees – from the design team to retailers in Apple stores all over the world – as long as they provide a service that will contribute to the overall customer experience with Apple. Likewise, the focus is on responsibility and accountability, where all tasks are identified and clearly traceable to specific people within teams.