The belief that Apple doesn’t conduct market research seems to stem from Steve Jobs era. The late Apple CEO insisted that market research was pointless because consumers didn’t know what they want.
Phil Schiller, Apple’s marketing chief, made a reminiscent statement of the view back in 2012 saying the company doesn’t rely on any focus groups, customer surveys, or typical things of this kind; that has no role in the creation of Apple products.
Despite these statements, it turns out that the Cupertino Company does conduct market research. A court document from the Apple vs. Samsung 2011 trial questions iPad owners about why they purchased the tablet, reports WSJ. The results are also indicative of popular reasons for purchasing the iPhone, such as the design and the ‘trust’ associated with the Apple brand.
Yes, gasp!, Apple is very much interested in your say.
Greg Joswiak – the VP of Product Marketing – gave a declaration explaining why the documents should be sealed. He said that the information revealed what is driving customers to buy iPhone compared to rival products such as Android handsets by Samsung, what features are used, and the customers’ demographics and satisfaction level with the iPhone.
He also asserted that if this information is publicly available, Apple would suffer competitive harm and subsequently, competitors would be able to shift focus on features that attract customers to iPhone and iPad… the value of market research.
Apple’s market research department has even reached out to consumers with a survey on Apple products they own. The survey includes questions such as what the consumer thinks and feels about Apple’s software, and what the company could do to improve its current line of products. After completion, survey participants are invited to be a part of the ‘Apple Customer Pulse’ group.
In other words, Apple is asking your thoughts on how it can improve its rather fine product line. Sounds weird? Not really, because the idea that a company this successful didn’t conduct any research has always been ridiculous.
The site, surveys and documents indicate Apple realizes the importance of technology & media market research for gaining strategic insights into technologies, products and market segments that drive industry growth. Or else, it wouldn’t be asking questions about rival offerings in consumer surveys.
It’s an online community consisting of Apple product owners on contribute to variety of subjects and issues pertaining to the Apple brand. Consumers who participate receive 2 surveys each month.
Once logging in with Apple ID credentials, you’ll be asked to create a profile for the Apple Customer Pulse group. If Apple sends a membership invitation, you’ll be required to fill a detailed survey related to your Apple products.
Apple also relies on its retail outlets for research; store managers receive comments from customers and take charge for service recovery calls with employees. The outcome is important feedback messages that are used as research to fine-tune the company’s approach.
Is it a shock to you that Apple carries out market research, regularly? Were you among those who referenced ‘customers don’t know what they want’ as justification for Apple shying away from customer feedback analysis? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section.