A flashback of an historical campaign…
This week we decided to go vintage and analyze an old-special campaign from Apple, the distinguished “Think Different” which launched in 1997. This slogan changed the way we see campaigns, ads, posters and of course the way we see computers and technology. Although it’s not grammatically correct, as the word “think” needs a following adverb, Jobs persisted on the adjective “different” stating that “Think Differently” would be a misunderstanding.
That was the goal of Apple’s co-founder Steve Jobs, he claimed specifically that “you always had to be a little different to buy an Apple computer.”
“I think you had to really think differently when you bought a Mac. It was a totally different computer, worked in a totally different way, used a totally different part of your brain. And it opened up a computer world for a lot of people who thought differently … And I think you still have to think differently to buy an Apple computer.”
We all can understand why Jobs chose the word “different” and since then Apple is on top as a multinational enterprise in technology and launching the most innovative devices, services. So, without any doubt it has gained the market and the consumers in general.
The campaign was anchored by the memorable “Crazy Ones” spot which celebrates some of the world’s time-honored visionaries like Albert Einstein , Thomas Edison , Gandhi , Pablo Picasso and a dozen more. “Here’s to the crazy ones… the ones who see things differently” are some of the words that we listen to this unforgettable spot.
The exact text of the ad:
“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules and they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them. About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who do.”
But what’s the story behind this ad? Jonathan Littman , did his research with the aid of Craig Tanimoto , an old creative art director who worked at TBWA/Chiat/Day agency and became the person behind this brilliant concept with black and white photographs of “crazies” people who “thought different” in combination with the all-time-classic logo and slogan.
To be more precise in 1997 ,as he said, Apple was “in trouble…they had only 90 days of money left”. That moment Tanimoto started to draw some sketches inspired by those of Rene Magritte’s “Ceci n’est pas une pipe”and later he combined them with Apple’s logo and the words “Think Different”. For days Tanimoto kept these sketches in his notebook pointing out that “ideas are fragile” and need incubation time, although he knew that this was THE BIG idea that Apple wanted. At agency’s presentation in which creative teams were pinching their ideas, Craig achieved to inspire the whole room and they started working on his idea.
The outcome: it became a success cooperating with the big “Think Different” campaign and it was promoted on TV, on posters and “rejuvenated Apple and ushered in a new age, turning personal computing into a catalyzing metaphor for rebellion, individuality, and change” (J.Littman)
Indeed, this ad is strong and motivating, it can draws viewer’s attention from the first second and it remains unique until now. However, for the record Steve Jobs wasn’t sure at first about this combination claiming that “This is great, this is really great … but I can’t do this. People already think I’m an egotist, and putting the Apple logo up there with all these geniuses will get me skewered by the press.” but after some minutes he decided to continue with this idea, realizing that this was the correct to do for Apple. Finally, the company never launch a video without the lyrics as they are a strong feature creating an emotional bond with the audience.
Albert Einstein, Bob Dylan, Martin Luther King, Jr., Richard Branson, John Lennon (with Yoko Ono), Buckminster Fuller, Thomas Edison, Muhammad Ali, Ted Turner, Maria Callas, Mahatma Gandhi, Amelia Earhart, Alfred Hitchcock, Martha Graham, Jim Henson (with Kermit the Frog), Frank Lloyd Wright and Pablo Picasso
Instructor: Lina Kiriakou