If there’s anything Apple is good at, it’s getting their target audience’s attention.

Apple announced a net valuation peak this week – at $3 trillion, the Silicon Valley poster child has grown by a massive 50% since the beginning of the pandemic. With changing times and radically flipped ad campaigns, it’s interesting to take note of how Apple has communicated to us over the years – particularly with respect to Steve Jobs’ efforts in the 80s and 2000s.

Here’s a quick lowdown on the tech giant’s most memorable ads – and a bit of context towards what made them so special.


5. Think Different (1997)

Right around the turn of the century, Apple released a calm, collected, confident ad that almost prophesied Jobs’ long term goal – associating Apple products with change, dynamicism, and creativity. Juxtapositioned across key figures from the 20th century, Apple urged us to follow the ‘dreamers’  – people crazy enough to take risks and change the world for the better.

Fun fact – while the voiceover for this ad was performed by actor Richard Dreyfuss, there’s a hidden, unreleased version of it with Steve Jobs speaking the words – give it a listen.

4. Stroll (2017)

Crafted by agency TBWA, this slick, effortlessly cool ad features Down by Marian Hill – paired with the sweet moves of Charles “Lil Buck” Riley, one of the biggest names in Los Angeles when it comes to hip-hop performances.

Beautifully shot and perfectly capturing the product’s ease-of-use and minimalistic design, it’s no stretch to say that this ad was ‘practically magic’.

3. Romeo and Juliet (2016)

I’ll make no secret of it – at least when it comes to the 2010s, I have something of a soft spot for Apple’s ‘practically magic’ creative direction.

Each one-minute film captured an essential part of the way we use everyday technology, backed with a human touch – something that this cute iPhone 7 ad absolutely nails down. Every parent has moments with their children that they want to capture – and Apple absolutely tugs on the heartstrings with this sweet portrayal of a proud father filming his daughter’s school play.

2. Silhouettes (2003)

While Apple’s ads were decidedly less character-driven in the mid 2000s, that certainly doesn’t mean they lacked personality.

Simple, memorable, and super-nostalgic to see today, the campaign first introduced us to regular people rocking out on their iPods. After this became a hit, we received a few artist collaborations too – everyone from Bob Dylan to Eminem lent their voice and silhouette to this campaign, teasing us with the definitive personal music experience of the 2000s.

1. 1984 (1983)

There’s simply no way this one couldn’t have been on the list.

It’s amusing that while the original Macintosh computer bombed on release, this 1983 Super Bowl commercial remains the subject of advertising courses over three decades later. Directed by science fiction wizard Ridley Scott, 1984 presents a dystopian future broken by a symbol of freedom – a timeless image that perhaps grows in relevance with each passing year.

With an exciting 2022 lineup of Macbooks, iPhones, and more on the horizon, we can’t wait to see what Apple reveals next.

(Image Source: Apple Inc.)