Apple Gets Closer to Winning Me Over

I had my first experience with Apple back in January. I bought an iPod and generally had a great experience in their store at the Jordan Creek Mall in Des Moines. The employees were friendly, empathetic and attentive. The iPod exceeded my expectations in almost every respect. I’m beginning to get it. For years I’ve put off even looking at a Mac because the "whole world" uses Windows. After my wife’s recent forced "upgrade" to Vista and all the software headaches that went along with it – I’m starting not to care.

When Apple opened their retail stores, the predictions of a quick demise were numerous. Gateway couldn’t do it. Dell wouldn’t even try it. What made Apple think they could pull it off? It turns out that the naysayers have, thus far, been wrong. Sales are up 34 percent from a year ago.

Apple has always had its rabid fan-base. But how to turn complacent Windows lemmings into customers?
The New York Times recently published an article by Randall Stross, in which he cites one of the keys to Apple’s retail success:

The stores were born fully formed and have not required any fundamental
changes. The best innovation was present on Day One: the “Genius Bar,”
with a staff of diagnostic wizards whose expertise is available in
one-on-one consultations — free. Pure genius. More than half of the
retail store’s staff is assigned to post-sales service
.

A quality product, fair price, convenient location, and exceptional service. By putting the Apple products and experience in a place where the Windows-users of the world can drop in and touch, feel, play, talk, experience and get service from a live human being – they have put themselves in the best position to convert consumers to a Mac.

  6 comments for “Apple Gets Closer to Winning Me Over

  1. Tom B
    May 28, 2007 at 2:33 pm

    “quality product, fair price, convenient location, and exceptional service.”
    The formula works for me. I’ve used Macs since 1989 and (at work) Windows 95, 2000, and XP. I believe the quality gap between Mac and Windows has always favored the Mac, but has significantly widened since the Mac went to a UNIX foundation (with its extra good security and multitasking) and Windows didn’t– they instead spent 5 years on Vista’s “eye-candy”.

  2. Tom B
    May 28, 2007 at 2:34 pm

    “When Apple opened their retail stores, the predictions of a quick demise were numerous.”
    Addendum: I think Apple actually prototyped a full scale store in a warehouse somewhere– talk about attention to detail!

  3. OX11
    May 28, 2007 at 2:40 pm

    Welcome to the blissful computing party… one that has been going on for about 23 years. Sadly, the SHADOW of IBM surpressed many people from experiencing a better way for much of that time, but all that is changing and Windows marketshare continues to shrink each and every day.
    In most ways Macs are more powerful, at 17,550 apps it certainly has a more modern software library than Windows, and since Apple builds the entire widget you are free to use any hardware without the fear of it being “incompatible” like in the Windows world.
    Someday everyone will be using a Mac, just like everyone uses a iPod when they want the best music experience. The Mac is around 34.2 times better than the iPod, so it’s only a matter of time before the “masses” find this out.
    Enjoy your Mac!

  4. David
    May 28, 2007 at 4:09 pm

    So now you have had your iPod for a while go get yourself a Mac. Waking up has never felt so good.

  5. May 28, 2007 at 7:32 pm

    Thanks for the feedback guys. In a moment of synchronicity I happened to take my daughters to the mall today and strolled into the Apple store. Put my hands on a Mac and gave it a spin.
    One step closer 🙂

  6. Hi!
    May 28, 2007 at 11:01 pm

    “When Apple opened their retail stores, the predictions of a quick demise were numerous. Gateway couldn’t do it. Dell wouldn’t even try it. What made Apple think they could pull it off?”
    Gateway and Dell are selling low margin generic PC hardware, if you’re into that sort of things it’s easier to go to Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Circuit City, CompUSA, etc. Moreover, “the [Gateway] stores did not carry any inventory.” LOL!
    People visit the Apple retail stores because you can test drive a Mac (and accessories), buy one right away and take it home. The service is better than anywhere else, other retailers don’t care about the Mac. And the Apple brand is so much more valuable and hip than the Gateway brand in the first place.
    Apple hired a top retail executive, Ron Johnson. He’s now a Senior Vice President at Apple. Such a success was difficult to foresee in 2001, though. The revenue in sales per square foot is insane.

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