10th Jan 2007, by Andrew Barr

Legendry Apple 1984 Advert

I kept meaning to find this ad and pop it on here...

Everyone in the ad industry stills holds the Apple 1984 advert shown below in total reverence. There is a whole lot of hot air spouted about this ad and how it came to be but for those in the SME community, maybe new to Marketing, basically this advert defined what Apple computers was to become and put them on the map.

The ad is directed by Ridley Scott and shows people rebelling against a big brother type figure. In reality Apple were saying it was the end to IBM's dominance.

The story is that Apple filmed it and planned to show it across a few ad breaks during the superbowl on January 22, 1984 during the Superbowl.

Based on their initial reaction, Apple executives booked two slots during the upcoming Super Bowl. However, the Apple board of directors was dismayed by the ad and instructed management not to show it and sell the slots.

Despite the board's dislike of the film Steve Wozniak watched it and offered to pay for the spot personally if the board refused to air it.

From Wiki, here is the story:

A perhaps apocryphal story has Apple only able to sell one slot and then deciding that they might as well use the other and show the ad. It aired at the first commercial break after the second-half kick-off.

In reality, the reason the commercial was saved from total cancellation was the result of an act of defiance and an act of bravado. According to the book The Mac Bathroom Reader by Owen Linzmayer:

“ The board hadn't demanded the commercial be killed, nonetheless Sculley asked Chiat/Day to sell back the one and one half minutes of Super Bowl television time that they had purchased. The original plan was to play the full-length, 60-second 1984 spot to catch everyone's attention, then hammer home the message during a subsequent commercial break with an additional airing of an edited 30-second version.

Defying Sculley's request, Jay Chiat told his media director, Camille Johnson, "Just sell off the thirty." Johnson laughed, thinking it would be impossible to sell any of the time at so late a date, but miraculously, she managed to find a buyer for the 30-second slot. That still left Apple with a 60-second slot for which it had paid $800,000.”

The decision whether to run the commercial was left to VP of Marketing William V. Campbell and Executive VP of Marketing and Sales E. Floyd Kvamme. In the end, the two decided to run the commercial.

So, here is the advert, in all its glory...

Good innit!

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