The Rotten Apple

Part of your brand is knowing what you do and what you do well. The best part of your business needs to function well. Recognizing that you can’t do everything is essential to defining your business, your brand, and your customer.

Apple is a business conglomerate that practically rule the world. They’re the best and they can do no wrong. But recently we’ve seen them fail. With the new release of the latest software system and the implementation of Maps, Apple has attempted to push Google out of their system and monopolize their software system.

Liz Larson of Fast Company summed up Apple’s recent stumble perfectly:

“Google’s Android devices are one of Apple’s top opponents in terms of market share. And at face value, giving its main competitor prime real estate on the home screen of tens of millions of iPhones and iPads everywhere seemed like an egregious concession of free, competitive advertising. But when it came time to execute on the strategy of bringing a previously open-sourced application in-house, it would appear that Apple’s product development team had neither the time nor skill set to be successful, thus propelling the brand into an unwanted spotlight.

In order to maintain brand consistency, a fundamental principle of corporate strategy is that you can’t be all things to all people. It’s simply not practical from an execution perspective, and it muddies the message of how customers view your identity in the marketplace. This harks back to recognizing the key strengths of your business, but it also hints at the easily neglected divide between operational capabilities and customer-facing strategy.”

Even seemingly invincible companies misstep. We never thought we’d see the day when Apple failed at something. Yet, Maps wasn’t up to par with the rest of their services and has issued a plethora of complaints from customers. Apple will keep on keepin’ on, but this has certainly altered the image of perfection many have.

Business owners everywhere can learn from Apple’s mistake. As much as you may want to beat out the competition, in order to be successful – long term – you have to do it right. Apple surely dominates in many, many ways, but maybe in this case they should have left it to Google to handle mapping – something they do extremely well.

It may seem tempting to try and “do it all.” But even the biggest most successful brands can’t do it all. Focus on your strengths. Focus on what you do best. That’s what will lead to success.

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