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Some camps hold the view that a golden rule of positioning and effective branding is to never mention the competition in your advertising. But rules were made to be broken. Especially when breaking them results in great creative, clear messaging and potential word of mouth value.
The Apple versus PC (aka Microsoft) is a case in point over the years.
Apple has clearly cornered the creative niche in this genre, literally taking a hammer to the competition and effectively demonstrating that there is such a thing as geek chic. From the iconic Chiat Day 1984 Apple Macintosh Super Bowl spot touted as the best TV commercial of all time, down to the recent spots Mac versus PC spots starring John Hodgman and Justin Long that are cute and entertaining (as far as 30 second spots go), the competition has paled.
Enter Research In Motion‘s Blackberry and the new era of mobile wars. The spirit of this spot below literally “takes a shot” at Apple in a simple and smart way. Visually relevant and memorable. No over thinking here.
As with the personal computer market, there is a lot at stake with mobile brand and product positioning over the long-term. And, these are still early days. One has to wonder if this is a one-off or, if there long term viability for RIM’s to approach Apple’s prowess on this front as each execution can be a very risky proposition. At the end of the day, though,competition is good. But it is even better when it yields powerful creative, so let the battle wage on.
UPDATE: As suspected, this was a consumer generated video (I’m told it was likely done by an agency or other professional outfit, but was unsolicited and not sanctioned or endorsed by RIM). It was not aligned with RIM’s standards for advertising or branding. And, although I do like the simplicity of it, it makes a lot more sense with that in mind. Apologies for not nailing down the source of the video in the original post.