Steve Jobs

by David Heitman

As Steve Jobs is being remembered and quoted this week, we, like others, find inspiration in his statement that what you leave out of a product is more important than what you put into it. The less-is-more genius that Apple fostered for decades has been evidenced not just in their products, but in their marketing as well. That’s why every time we ask clients what brands they admire most, Apple is on every list.

This rich minimalism is the essential aspect of the branding work we do for our clients: stripping off the accretions of endless product features, industry jargon and conventionality to reach the essence of what makes a company meaningful to its audience…What makes its products and services truly unique…What gives its brand experience the qualities that no competitor can imitate.

Without reaching that essential core, branding is artificial, derivative and ineffective.

But get to a simple differentiating value proposition, and then mirror it with a few thoughtfully chosen words and simple, arresting visuals, and you have a communications juggernaut that can win over audiences and increase market share.

That’s the lesson Steve Jobs taught the business world, and he backed it up with a perfectionism that simultaneously exasperated and motivated his colleagues and employees. He was famous for making last-minute improvements well into the production cycle, unwilling to release a product until it was perfect.

The great ones always pay these kinds of dues while making it look easy to the rest of the world.

Rest in peace, Steve.

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