2/16/2012

"Image is Everything"

A tennis player once said this in an ad, and regretted it afterwards. He was just reading script, but somehow it stuck to him and not the product. (a camera I think)

I think that quote may be right. If you think of the world we live in, the 24 hours news cycle, image is everything.

Or at least if you project the wrong image you stand to lose alot.

What on earth are you talking about Solfest? You are the guy who trades occasionally and rants constantly.


Is that my image?

The Ranting Trader?

I need an agency.

What got me thinking about this was an IPad on it's way to Alberta. The IPad starts it's journey in Chengdu, China, and right now it's in Shanghai where I suppose it's being loaded on a container ship.

The IPad as we all know is an Apple product. Everyone loves Apple.

There is another American company that imports stuff from China.

Wal-Mart.

Everyone hates Wal-Mart.

Why the difference?

Image is everything.

Apple builds products in China that nobody needs. We want them, most certainly, but nobody needs them. Not only do we not need them but I have found their actual performance rather wanting.

The Apple operating system is not user friendly and I find it very annoying to use. That said I don't use it much and I am used to Windows so maybe it's my problem and not theirs.

My daughter bought an IPhone a few months back and it's performance in 2 critical areas is also sub par. One being battery life, what's the point of a mobile device if it has to be continually plugged into the wall. The other is phone quality. Phone as in actually using the phone to talk to someone, yes people still do that.

I have a cheap cell phone and my daughter and I both use the same carrier, my phone never drops calls and you can understand what I'm saying on the phone. With the IPhone if the call doesn't drop completely I can't understand anything she is saying as the call quality is terrible.

It does have apps though.

In spite of all this Apple is the most successful company on earth right now. They make gobs of money and everyone loves them.

Banks used to make gobs of money and everyone hates them.

Wal-mart provides goods that we all need and use everyday. They provide them cheaper than most other retailers mainly because they buy in enormous quantities, have immaculate inventory control, and most of the products are produced in China.

Yet everyone hates Wal-Mart.

Why?

Image is everything.

Steve Jobs, as we have found out lately, was not a very nice man. What he was was a marketing genius. His company gouges us for things we don't need, things that are all built in China, and we all worship him for it.

Steve Jobs made Apple cool, and he either knew, or found out that people are willing to pay up for cool.

Image is everything.

Steve Jobs knew that and that was his real genius.

So Solfest if you're so smart why on earth are you buying a IPad?

Good question.

Since this post is too long I'll answer it tomorrow.

7 comments:

Sandy said...

I hate to say it, I tried the iPhone.... inevitably, loathing took over...I almost pitied myself for becoming an apploid.

One day I woke up, looked at the terrible thing and "accidentally" dropped it in the wash basin.

I am happy to say, it self - destructed immediately. Yay, I am normal again :) :) ;) :)

Someone said I threw away 600bucks, I said "I don't give a flying ****"

Now, I am going to make fun of you Apploid Solfest

Solfest said...

Ya ya bring it on, I deserve it.

cory said...

stuck with iPhone now, I look forward to the day I can get back to Samsung. It is unbelievable that there is no alert for missing phone call on iPhone. They just assume that people will have it attach to their ears 24/7.

Anonymous said...

Hi,

I'm not sure the examples you raised concern company's image. It's rather a matter of utility characteristics of goods. I'd say that the same concerns people. Why we respect famous actor more than a baker?

WalMart is making tons of money on what WE NEED (thus exploiting our simple, basic, everyday needs that should be in our opinion free or as cheap as possible). If they cut their profits to 'reasonable' amounts they would greatly improved their image.

And Apple is making tons of money on what we are willing to pay for, on things that are luxuries (things we do not expect to be free or be as cheap as possible).

Solfest said...

Anon, you make my case for me. Wal-Mart does not make "tons of money", and is not "exploiting" us.

Compared to Apple Wal-Mart practically gives the stuff away.

For every dollar of revenue earned Wal-Mart makes 4 cents. A net profit margin of 3.89%

For every dollar of revenue earned Apple makes 24 cents. A net profit margin of 23.95%

Image is everything.

Facts don't matter.

I'm not against Apple making as much money as they can, in fact I'm all for it. I'm all for it every company, Goldman Sachs, Wal-Mart, Apple, whomever.

My point was that do to the image Steve Jobs created Apple can do no wrong in the public eye. Even if some of their products are not actually all that great no one seems to care. And no one seems to care about the price they charge.

Kudos to Steve Jobs.

Wal-Mart, as you identify, seemingly can do no right. Despite the fact they sell us the stuff we need at rock bottom prices, "we" all seem to hate them.

I guess on that front Sam Walton got it wrong.

Sandy said...

My old man...is about as plain old jane as could be...he worked hard, saved all his money, never invested a dime on things his peers cared for.....new cars, big houses, fancy gizmos...what not....

He abhorred stocks and investing in general....He is what Irving Fisher, von Mises, Friedman, Smith, Hayek would describe as a creator of goods and services using labor and a creator of wealth by saving.

He retired at 55 a millionaire, and has more money now than what he knows what to do with....

He is proof positive that image is NOTHING. And that in this day and age where useless items like iPads, iPhones et al abound and are accepted as items of value rather being symbols of our vanity and decadence.....value remains value for those with their head screwed straight. He did look at me and shake his head when I told how much my Meisterstuck cost.

He knows I am a lost cause..

Solfest said...

A what?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Meisterst%C3%BCck

Oh.

Save.

That's a good word.