Steve Jobs of Apple once said this:
It’s really hard to design products by focus groups. A lot of times, people don’t know what they want until you show it to them.” (Business Week, May 25, 1998)
Thanks to Harris for passing this one along.
It’s true. Focus groups have their place, but they can never be considered the law. They still only represent a segment, and it’s a segment that is naturally being encouraged to be opinionated. My experience with focus groups has shown that they are best at giving you new ideas, but don’t deny your on convictions over them. Lead the way. Like Apple does.
Chances are that when you read the title to this post, you thought of Apple. Am I right?
Seth Godin has this to say about naming a product, and it all makes complete sense. But I don’t totally agree. And the fact that you thought of your Mac or your iPod or your iPhone after reading my title only proves it.
Godin argues that Apple could have done a better job at naming their product. I disagree. They have so significantly and successfully branded the letter “i” (even if it’s not a legal trademark) that just seeing it makes you think Apple. And that’s essentially what branding is, yes?
Sure, other companies are taking advantage of it. There’s the iHome, and iSound, and iBlock, and even iBlog. All of whom are obviously taking complete and unwarranted advantage of Apple’s work and success. But I guarantee you these companies are not enjoying the fruits of their labor, in the long run, like Apple is.
Because you thought of Apple every time you read one of their names. It’s branding at it’s finest.