Beginning early last week, the crux of this blog post underwent quite the transformation. Originally about Apple’s ability to leave both customers and media alike waiting with bated breath, the post shifted to look at the disappointment following the iPhone 5-less event last Tuesday and the company’s ability to shrug it off with the bravado of a company concerned with little else than making bad-ass products.
But when news broke Wednesday of Steve Jobs’ death, there was no debating the topic of these words. As a lifelong PC user (although I do use and cherish an iPhone4), Jobs’ passing didn’t provoke in me quite the same level of mourning that so many felt following the news. Still, it’s impossible to ignore the impact he had on popular culture – and, more importantly, admire the rare level of passion he had for his craft.
Working in public relations, what interested me most about Jobs was his approach to media and communications, one that was more hands-on than it appeared on the surface. Apple is famously (or infamously from the media’s perspective) tight-lipped about its doings. Jobs unapologetically put the product and user-experience first above all else.
Behind the scenes, however, he embraced media and would even practice his own PR at times and pitch major media outlets himself. The image of a visionary tech CEO, one who changed entire industries, picking up a phone for a pitch call to a reporter should bring a smile to every PR pro’s face. It’s emblematic of the curiosity and control over his own destiny that drove him and Apple to unrivaled success.
Image credit: Jonathan Mak