Social Media Marketing Lessons from Steve Jobs You Can Use


A guest post by Henry Fitzgerald

What were mp3 players like before the iPod? Where did we buy music before the iTunes store? And, how did we ever function before the iPhone?

Steve Jobs certainly changed our lives as consumers, but what about as marketers, advertisers, business people, or social media experts. Jobs’ far-reaching effect on our lives is now so innate, we might not even notice.

With that being said, let’s take a moment to appreciate how Steve Jobs changed the name of social media marketing.

Lesson #1: No One is Perfect

Steve Jobs was never perfect. His Motorola Rokr, an early and distant ancestor of the iPhone was a complete failure. Who’s even heard of it? Or the Power Mac G4 cube? Doesn’t ring a bell. Jobs learned from failures and setbacks, capitalized on losses and moved on to bigger and better things. His lack of success with MobileMe paved the way for broad communication technology like iCloud onConference and Google Docs.

Lesson #2: Swim Against the Current

The tech industry is a unique blend of swimming upstream and swimming with the current. It’s hard to balance, but Steve Jobs had it down to science. He managed to think differently, stay ahead of consumers’ needs and make ‘outrageous’ predictions, like the prevalence of home computers functioning with the internet.

Lesson #3: Pay Attention to Details

Apple products work ridiculously well. Unless you’ve dropped your iPhone or spilled iced tea on your Macbook, it’s hard to justify buying a new Apple product claiming your product stopped working. Jobs was committed to details. He wasn’t willing to overlook small problems or kinks, even in the smallest of details. As a result, Apple’s products work well through and through, not just on the surface and not just for 6 months.

Lesson #4: Simplicity

One of the largest and most widespread early arguments for switching to Macs was that they’re easy to use. People raved about how simple Mac computers were and felt no sympathy for whiny PC users who couldn’t find the files they stored or the ‘print’ command in Word. Bringing things down to a consumer level can be hard to do, but Jobs made the computer accessible for everyone. Apple products are unique in that they please both Techy Tom and Pen and Paper Patty.

Lesson #5: Aesthetics Matter

As simple as it sounds, Apple products are just plain cool. They’re sleek, attractive, enticing and they work well. While other products may work just as well, people want something that looks good too. Steve Jobs was well aware of the importance of good-looking designs. People may pretend to only care about performance, but he saw past our front.

Though Steve Jobs is gone, his innovation lives on through his products. The revolutionary iPhone, iPod and sleek laptops are a staple in our daily lives, and we’re probably not too sure what life would be like without them.


Henry Fitzgerald is a technology consultant based in Seattle. When not geeking out over the latest tech gadgets, he spends his time cooking, playing soccer, and sailing. Check out his tech blog here or follow him on twitter:@hfitzy34

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