Human Nature A Brand Perspective

When Apple set out to advertise the iPhone 5c, they certainly had a target audience in mind. With a business strategy to gain back market share using a relatively reasonably priced product, they developed a TV spot of diverse people, in diverse settings, giving diverse salutations over their multicolored phones. What transcends the business strategy is the idea that your next phone – which is now affordable – can be a source of deep human connection. The expressions are potent. Conversations across cultures and colors. In a word, beautiful.

Conversely, AT&T is advertising the same product with a completely different take. Claiming that "AT&T knows you don't want anything to come between you and your new iPhone," this ad falls flat in comparison. It is based solely around the device. We see people forsaking human interaction to get caught up in their phones. In a word, lonely.

They depict a woman detaching from her peers to check out her new iPhone. A man eats dinner alone instead of acknowledging a colleague locking up and heading out of the restaurant. And a man skipping the ride on the bus he was waiting for, all to avoid anything, or more importantly anyone, that could possibly distract from spending time on his phone.

This isn't to knock on AT&T. They have some of the most human advertisements around. It is simply a study of two approaches. Apple is known for its experience. The story they tell. In this instance, Apple feels human. You want to be a part of whatever they are selling. It's easy to feel a connection with them.

In a society that is on the fast track to becoming “inhuman”, it is more important than ever that we remind ourselves of what we all have in common.

In what ways could your brand be more human?