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PostSubject: The Real Story Of Apple’s ‘Think Different’ Campaign   Wed Feb 06, 2013 9:53 pm

Apple’s remarkable rise, coupled with Steve Job’s recent death, has prompted quite a few people to reflect on the historical impact of the “Think different” ad campaign and the “To the crazy ones” commercial that launched it. There have been a lot of different accounts of how the work was created, who conceived it, and how it was presented to Jobs, so I thought now was a good time to share my perspective and give you an inside look.

How do I know what took place? I was there—right in the thick of it. I was Creative Director and managing partner at TBWA/Chiat/Day working on the Apple pitch alongside CEO and Chief Creative Officer, Lee Clow. Together, Lee and I headed up and actively participated in all of the work done for the pitch. I was also in every agency meeting with Jobs throughout the process—pre-pitch, pitch, and post-pitch.

In writing this story, I’ve drawn from hand-written, dated creative journals I’ve diligently chronicled throughout my agency career as well as files I saved from the 1997 Apple time period—being a packrat often proves useful. In these journals I found countless pages of notes and concepts I jotted down during our process of trying to bring Apple back to prominence. I also found the original “To the crazy ones” television script I presented to Jobs and a plethora of rough drafts.

While I’ve seen a few inaccurate articles and comments floating around the internet about how the legendary “Think different” campaign was conceived, what prompted me to share this inside-account was Walter Isaacson’s recent, best-selling biography on Steve Jobs. In his book, Isaacson incorrectly suggests Jobs created and wrote much of the “To the crazy ones” launch commercial. To me, this is a case of revisionist history.

Steve was highly involved with the advertising and every facet of Apple’s business. But he was far from the mastermind behind the renowned launch spot. In fact, he was blatantly harsh on the commercial that would eventually play a pivotal role in helping Apple achieve one of the greatest corporate turnarounds in business history. As you’ll learn later in my account, the soul of the original “Crazy ones” script I presented to Jobs, as well as the original beginning and original ending of the celebrated script, all ultimately stayed in place—even though Jobs initially called the script “shit.” I’ve also read a few less-than-correct accounts on how the “Think different” campaign was originally conceived. While several people played prominent parts in making it happen, the famous “Think different” line and the brilliant concept of putting the line together with black and white photographs of time-honored visionaries was invented by an exceptional creative person, and dear friend, by the name of Craig Tanimoto—a TBWA/Chiat/Day Art Director at the time.

I have read many wonderful things about Steve Jobs and the warmth and love that he gave his wife, children and sister. His Stanford commencement address is one of the most touching and inspiring speeches I have ever heard. Steve was an amazing visionary and comparisons of him to some of the world’s greatest achievers I believe to be totally deserved. But I have also read many critical statements about Steve and I must say I saw and experienced his tongue-lashings and ballistic temper first hand—directed to several others and directed squarely at me. It wasn’t pretty. While I greatly respected Steve for his remarkable accomplishments and extraordinary passion, I didn’t have much patience for his often abrasive and condescending personality. It is here, in my opinion, that Lee Clow deserves a great deal of credit. Lee is more than a creative genius. In working with Jobs he had the patience of a saint.

People ask me what Steve Jobs was like and I often describe him as a mix between Michelangelo, Mies van der Rohe and Henry Ford—with some John McEnroe and Machiavelli thrown in. Steve was fiercely driven and there’s no way Apple could have possibly gone from laughing stock to “the stock you dream of owning” so swiftly without a relentless, self-confident genius at the helm. But Steve Jobs didn’t turn Apple around by himself. Many talented and dedicated people played key roles and that turnaround first began with an advertising campaign called “Think different.”

more here: http://beforeitsnews.com/business/2013/02/the-real-story-of-apples-think-different-campaign-2486164.html

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