The last two blogs talked about a couple of ingredients that Apple use in their giant cauldron of success. The first talked about Apple’s image branding. The second blog analyzed Apple’s messiah, Steve Jobs, and his reality distortion field. This current blog will investigate another key ingredient that Apple have utilised in order for them to create a successful business. This blog will examine Apple’s retail stores and the consumer’s retail experience.
I have only ever been to one Apple store, and I was overwhelmed. It was a retail experience like no other.
The staff were constantly aware of the customers and attended to them if they needed help. They were fully trained in Apple products and could answer any question a customer asked. The simple, plain, futuristic layout of the store created an original atmosphere. It felt like you had just entered a portal to a new world where everything seemed perfect. Thang and Lan (2003) discovered that in-store service and the atmosphere were factors that significantly influence the customer’s preference of the store. Burt and Carrelero-Encinas (2000) specify that store images are essential to establish if a company wants to be successful. Apple has seemed to have nailed these factors. Furthermore, Baker and Grewal (1994) found that store environment and service quality are key elements to store image.
Apple’s employees are named ‘Geniuses’! They are told by Apple exactly how to act and what to say. The staff are programmed to ensure the customers are happy. Spies et al., (1997) discovered that customers in a pleasant store ‘spontaneously’ spent more money.
The staff are one of the special techniques Apple employs to sell their products. The staff have to go through a rigorous training regime to enrobe the blue shirt, to become a Genius! The Geniuses are told to persuade while you seem passive, empathise why you sale. In one word, it’s Genius. Staff becoming the customers friend, ensuring a pleasant atmosphere but with the intent of selling you their products.
Apple’s combination of store environment and staff quality have ensured retail success. The Geniuses’ strict training creates the perfect atmosphere and service quality. Consumer’s experience is positive and thus, Apple sells products. The Genius is another key ingredient that Apple has brought into play to develop an incredibly successful retail store image.
What do you guys think? Have you ever been to an Apple store? Do you think more companies should develop their staff into Geniuses?