Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 23rd Mar 2012 15:09 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless I'm currently reading Jerry Kaplan's excellent book "Startup: a Silicon Valley adventure". In this book, Kaplan, founder and CEO of GO Corp., details the founding, financing and eventual demise of his highly innovative company, including the development and workings of their product. What's so surprising about this book is just how timeless it really is - the names and products may have changed, but the business practices and company attitudes surely haven't.
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kwan_e
Member since:
2007-02-18

"It is about creating the perceived value, which is mostly about appealing to hipster twats. You can do that without that much advertising. A large part of it can simply be dressing like a hipster twats and you've got those twats' attention.



Are you really arguing that a company that is selling around $185 billion worth of products a year, whose sales have been increasing at a rate of 100% and more per year for several years is doing this by mostly "appealing to hipster twats".

All I can say is given Apple's growth over the last decade there must have been a mysterious and vast increase in the hipster twat population ;)
"

Do you know how books and CDs and such make it on to best selling lists?

The publishers actually go out and buy the books. So even though they lose money doing so, they bump up their sales figures. Once it reaches a critical point, the fact that their sales growth figures are so big that they start getting on lists become advertisements in themselves, causing people to buy them just for being on the list. This further accelerates those figures and pulls the figures up even more. It's a well documented marketing practice and phenomenon.

Hipster twats show they are willing to spend more money than is sensible. They do this with clothes, music and computing devices. Look at the iPad ad from the Charlie Brooker rant that I linked to early on and tell me that ad isn't marketed towards hipster twats.

Once they get enough hipster twats buying, the wannabe-hipster-twats see the once overpriced gadget as suddenly worth the money.

This is called a positive feedback loop. Positive feedback loops happen all the time and are responsible for anything that causes acceleration beyond what is normally sustainable. It's even well documented in NATURE and are more commonly referred to as arms races - they are a special case of positive feedback loops. The golden goal of marketing is to create these positive feedback loops.

And yes there actually has been a mysterious increase in the hipster twat population. This is suggested by the increase in the number of shitty commercial music acts and the increase in sales for these shitty commercial music acts and their product advertising. It shows that more people are willing to spend more than is sensible for ordinary mass marketed products. An increase in the hipster twat population increases the population of wannabe-hipster twats also and that is a non-linear correlation.

It's saddening to see how many supposedly intelligent people really can't understand that they're being heavily psychological influenced. In Australia, there was a show called The Gruen Transfer which got marketing types together to explain all the tricks that marketers use to influence sales. You'd be surprised at how well subtle marketing works into making people believe they're making their own choices and not just doing the marketer's bidding. That, in turn, gets people defending their choices as well thought out, not understanding that's what the marketers aim for and have succeeded in doing.

The greatest trick marketing ever pulled was to convince gadget nerds that marketing doesn't exist. I think that's how that quote goes...

Reply Parent Score: 2

netpython Member since:
2005-07-06

So marketing is a form of social engineering?

Reply Parent Score: 2

kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

So marketing is a form of social engineering?


Social engineering is a fancy term for marketing. Anything that involves manipulating perceived value through means other than manipulating real value can probably be classified as social engineering.

This is not to say it's a bad thing. But for people like galvanash to completely dismiss the effects of marketing is lunacy. Especially when people are willing to fork out more money than is sensible.

If anything, marketing, the manipulation of perceived value, is the only thing that can explain Apple's utter domination.

Reply Parent Score: 2

galvanash Member since:
2006-01-25

The publishers actually go out and buy the books. So even though they lose money doing so, they bump up their sales figures. Once it reaches a critical point, the fact that their sales growth figures are so big that they start getting on lists become advertisements in themselves, causing people to buy them just for being on the list. This further accelerates those figures and pulls the figures up even more. It's a well documented marketing practice and phenomenon.


Sure, but it only works (i.e. results in a net profit) if the book doesn't suck. The product DOES matter, or people stop buying it... Then you get into a negative feedback loop - consumers have some power in the equation too...

Once they get enough hipster twats buying, the wannabe-hipster-twats see the once overpriced gadget as suddenly worth the money.


Same thing. In the end the product still matters...

The greatest trick marketing ever pulled was to convince gadget nerds that marketing doesn't exist. I think that's how that quote goes...


I don't think anyone has said marketing doesn't exist... They simply said THEY LIKE THE PRODUCT. The problem with your whole argument is that you twist marketing into some supernatural force that can make people like things that are in fact totally worthless crap. I'm not saying that can't happen (pet rock?), but it is relatively rare - and it is possible for a heavily marketed product to actually be good on its own merits.

Liking an iPad doesn't make you an idiot. Thinking that liking an iPad makes you an idiot DOES make you an idiot... It simply ignores the fact that people like the freedom to spend money as they see fit - they can rationalize a choice. Marketing influences them, but it doesn't control them.

Do you buy bottled water? Your an idiot. Do you ever buy anything you see on TV? Your an idiot. Do you drive anything more expensive than a $1500 used car? Your an idiot. Do you play video games or watch movies? Your an idiot.

I'd bet a whole lot of money that one of these applies to you... How do you like being called an idiot?

Edited 2012-03-25 06:02 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 2

kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

"The publishers actually go out and buy the books. So even though they lose money doing so, they bump up their sales figures. Once it reaches a critical point, the fact that their sales growth figures are so big that they start getting on lists become advertisements in themselves, causing people to buy them just for being on the list. This further accelerates those figures and pulls the figures up even more. It's a well documented marketing practice and phenomenon.


Sure, but it only works (i.e. results in a net profit) if the book doesn't suck. The product DOES matter, or people stop buying it... Then you get into a negative feedback loop - consumers have some power in the equation too...
"

*cough* Twilight *cough* The Da Vinci Code *cough*

Real world evidence continues to prove you wrong. People will buy shitty products if it's on a list somewhere and they'll try to convince themselves the list has nothing do with it when in fact it plays a disproportionate part of it.

*cough* VHS *cough* Windows *cough*

"The greatest trick marketing ever pulled was to convince gadget nerds that marketing doesn't exist. I think that's how that quote goes...


I don't think anyone has said marketing doesn't exist... They simply said THEY LIKE THE PRODUCT. The problem with your whole argument is that you twist marketing into some supernatural force that can make people like things that are in fact totally worthless crap. I'm not saying that can't happen (pet rock?), but it is relatively rare - and it is possible for a heavily marketed product to actually be good on its own merits.
"

When have I ever made the argument that heavily marketed products cannot be good on its own merits? I did not make that generalization. What I DID say is the Apple products are not as better than its competitors as the difference in the price of those products suggests. You, on the other hand, DO make that claim by making the proxy claim that Apple is worth $500 billion dollars because they really produce $500 billion worth of value and perception of value is an inconsequential percentage of it.

No one has said marketing doesn't exist. What people have said is that it plays an inconsequential part of it. Like it or not, psychology affects us more than you know. Deal with it.

I don't twist marketing as a supernatural force. However, marketing is a powerful force. It's strange for you to dismiss marketing as impossible to have a disproportionate amount of power in positive feedback loops, but see no problem in trying to give me a lesson in capitalist economics, which uses terms like "market" and "invisible hand".

Liking an iPad doesn't make you an idiot. Thinking that liking an iPad makes you an idiot DOES make you an idiot... It simply ignores the fact that people like the freedom to spend money as they see fit - they can rationalize a choice. Marketing influences them, but it doesn't control them.


Do you know what? I went back through all the comments. Did a Ctrl-F for the word "idiot". Did you know you're the only person who has used the word "idiot" more than three times in a post? Did you know I never used the word "idiot" in any of my posts? Not only that, I never went so far as saying being susceptible to marketing makes someone an idiot. Being susceptible to marketing and psychology makes someone HUMAN. Nothing wrong with being human. But there's everything wrong with believing yourself to be above being HUMAN in your self-assessed rationality. There is everything wrong with denying that you're HUMAN. There is everything wrong with selectively picking numbers that try to show it has nothing to do with being HUMAN. And that is why I will now put you in the same category as creationists.

Therefore, I also did NOT make any argument that can be construed as saying people are idiots for like iPads. However, I will say people are idiots for liking iPads AS MUCH AS THEY DO. People even identify with Apple and Apple products, which is much more than LIKING a product.

When someone tries to clear away the myth and mystique of a company with logic, reason and evidence, and for another person to use magical economic numbers as a counter-argument, only to reveal that is because they felt attacked by the initial demystifying, is nothing short of identifying oneself with said company. Liking said company's product to the point of identifying oneself with the company, and feeling personally attacked when another doesn't buy into it - that is being an idiot.

Do you buy bottled water? Your an idiot. Do you ever buy anything you see on TV? Your an idiot. Do you drive anything more expensive than a $1500 used car? Your an idiot. Do you play video games or watch movies? Your an idiot.

I'd bet a whole lot of money that one of these applies to you... How do you like being called an idiot?


Would you bet $500 billion? (You haven't answered my wager. If perceived value = actual value in a capitalist economy as you schooled me on, would you really pay $500 billion for Apple if you owned $1 trillion?)

Do I buy bottled water? No
Do I ever buy anything I've seen on TV? Yes. But not an iPad 2. In fact, TV commercials tend to put me off a product. I stopped buying Coke for 5 years because I hated their ads. I've started drinking Coke occasionally, mainly because I no longer watch TV and so haven't seen an ad for Coke for a long time...
Do I drive anything more expensive than a $1500 used car? I catch buses and trains.
Do I play video games or watch movies? Yes. But most games or movies aren't hypervalued in the way that Apple products are. I bought Halo Anniversary for $60, but then, Halo is so far the only game franchise I've bought more than one title of...

In case you haven't got it yet - it's about budgeting. Sensible spending of hard-earned dollars. Hipster twats have parents who buy everything for them. That relationship won't last forever.

How do you like revealing to everyone that your attempts to use economics voodoo to try and justify your reasons amount to nothing more than not being liked calling an idiot for liking something overpriced, especially when you weren't even being called an idiot in the first place? I'm pretty sure that's a complex of some sort, but I don't know what kind of complex it is.

Reply Parent Score: 2

Tony Swash Member since:
2009-08-22

And yes there actually has been a mysterious increase in the hipster twat population.


You couldn't make this shit up. Have you come off your meds again?

Reply Parent Score: 1

kwan_e Member since:
2007-02-18

"And yes there actually has been a mysterious increase in the hipster twat population.


You couldn't make this shit up. Have you come off your meds again?
"

In case you haven't noticed, "Hipster twat" is a DEMOGRAPHIC, not a biological species. Idiot.

Oh, and how dishonest of you for not quoting the REST of my post which explained what I meant by the "increase" in the "population".

You illustrate what it has come to - in order to maintain your self-deception, you stoop to misrepresenting people's arguments. Reality distortion field - you're in it.

Once again, you show you have no logical arguments to back yourself up and thus resort to misquoting and misrepresenting. Case in point, you haven't even bothered trying to rebut the fact of publishers and how they manipulate sales figures to get on best seller lists so they can start a positive feedback loop - and why this effect could not account for a significant portion of Apple's success.

You. Fail. Intellectual collapse. Vacuous idiot.

Edited 2012-03-26 00:50 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1