iAd. The very mention of the Apple-branded advertising platform a few months ago brought about cheers and jeers alike for the company. As we have moved through the time following the announcement, many have profited but still more are standing on their soap boxes and whining loudly about a number of issues surrounding the product.
17 launch partners were announced with the rollout of iAds. Of those 17, we’ve only seen ads from 6. Nissan was first, with its beautifully-designed ad for the Nissan Leaf. Others such as Unilever, Disney and Citigroup have followed in the path.
The question, of course, is simple: Why the long wait for everyone else?
The answer is one that nobody really wants to hear: Because quality takes time.
Apple is, far and away, a master of brilliant advertising. These things take time and Apple is taking its time to do the product justice. If the company rolled out basic point and click display advertising then the platform as a whole would suffer, and Apple’s reputation as an advertising mogul would go down the tubes with it.
Apple’s Control Issues
Still others seem to believe that Apple shouldn’t play any part in the creative process behind the ads. The issue there, however, is Apple’s unrelenting grasp over the appearance on its platforms.
Apple would be foolish to let others take complete creative control over its new brain child. Marketing, both by agencies and brand owners alike, has proven for years to be done poorly more often than not. If advertisers had their way with the platform, a screaming used car salesman would pop into your iPhone frame the second the ad came into focus.
While the end result might be a slowed deployment, at least Apple is holding true to what it considers important: the sanctity of its platforms.
Loss of Interest
One launch partner, Chanel, has pulled its interest from the platform entirely. While some seem to believe that this is an omen of things to come, I think that Chanel will be kicking itself in a matter of months.
As the iAd platform matures, Apple will gain speed in its release of new advertising. Once its up to cruising altitude, the companies who jumped ship early will be fighting for space to get back into Apple’s grasp.
Mark my words on this one: We are going to see an influx and a massive queue for advertisers who want to be involved with iAds.
Why Apple is Right
If you’ve read my posts, in the past, about good advertising and marketing, then you’ll know that one thing holds very true: advertisers are uniquely unqualified to produce their own advertising.
This is the point that so many advertisers and advertising agencies seem to not be able to grasp. I know that this will come as a shock to people in ad agencies, but a lot of the content that you produce…well…it sucks.
Apple is, at this point, doing you a world of favors by keeping a controlling hand on the iAd platform. Not only is it keeping you from throwing content out there that simply isn’t effective, it’s also making certain that the platform as a whole maintains its value, moving forward.
Nearly every product that Apple has rolled out has been a screaming success. Can you or your company say the same? How many duds are in your closet? Compare that to Apple and then take the hint.
Advertising, the psychology behind it and the platforms that it runs on are not fly-by-night games. There are literally millions of dollars of hard-earned money at stake, and Apple is providing a service to make sure that you will get the highest return on your investment.
There are, certainly, some bumps in the road. It’s unlikely that Apple knew the full scope of the business that it was heading into. It’s highly likely, conversely, that Apple had some surprises thrown its way.
While this plan comes to fruition, the glass house adage comes to mind, and there seem to be many who are holding baskets full of stones.