A Life Lesson Small Businesses Should Take Away From Apple’s Lost Jack
If there’s anything we’ve learnt in tech in the last couple of weeks, it’s that Apple customers don’t take kindly to being forced into something they aren’t ready for.
The previews of the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus have been put on display for the world, and along with them, the confirmation that the headphone jack will be no more. While they might have better battery life, a faster processor and be waterproof, many Apple customers still aren’t happy.
Apple seemed to be propelling their customers into a future they weren’t ready for. Business Insider’s Steve Kovach said that Apple fanatics buying the iPhone 7 on opening day would be letting themselves in for “the most painful part of the transition” between wired and wireless technology.
But, while you might be cringing at Apple’s recent decisions, there are some things you can learn from it; things that could help stop your small business from taking the wrong kind of gamble.
Remember your mission
While Apple is a leader in innovation, this time they might have pushed it too far. iPhone users will be unable to charge their phone and listen to music at the same time if they’re using regular earbuds.
There is also several confusing adapters that seem to be baffling people already. Even before the introduction of the iPhone 7, Apple has been criticised for not staying simple, as it battles between being innovative and just plain confusing.
While Apple’s mission statement might never have mentioned simplicity, it was a quality that many products were branded on.
To keep your customers happy, you should regularly revisit your mission statement. It will help you re-focus your business ethic and keep every piece of branding, content, marketing and every product on the right path as your business grows.
Don’t force customers into spending more
Losing the headphone jack does not mean that all customers of the iPhone 7 will be given a set of AirPods to console them through the grieving period.
Instead, the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus come with regular earbuds and an adapter (which as mentioned above, they won’t be able to use if they need to charge their phone at the same time). If users want to experience the excitement of playing treasure hunt with their AirPods at least two to three times a day, they can buy them for £159 when they arrive on sale in late October.
This is on top of the £599 they’ll spend on the actual handset (if they opt for the 32GB 7; prices go up to £919 for the 256GB iPhone 7 Plus).
The prices you charge will depend on the services or product you offer, but if you’re just starting out, making sure your product or service is affordable to your market should be a priority.
Forcing customers into spending more by altering a product won’t make you a popular brand – even if you get a higher pay at the end of the day. Is it worth losing those customers, and annoying the rest of them?
Try a compromise
Some users have expressed their concern about the loss of the headphone jack (to say the least) and explained that perhaps a little compromise from Apple would have gone a long way. For example, some of the features the AirPods offer are actually pretty neat. The blocking out external sound, the tap to answer the phone – both features a lot of iPhone users would be interested in trying out.
If you’re thinking of trying something new with your customers, speak to them and try a compromise. It’ll probably be more worth your time than if you take a risky gamble and it goes disastrously.
The overall takeaway: Listen to customers’ needs and put them first. While comparing your small business to a leading retailer of innovation might seem like a stretch, essential principles are the same; don’t push customers into something they aren’t ready for, or they’ll go somewhere else.
What are your opinions on the loss of Apple’s headphone jack? Do you think businesses everywhere should take this as a vital lesson for success, or is a gamble worth it? Drop us a comment below!