Writes Adweek’s Noreen O’Leary: In terms of politics and world events, this has been a wild decade, but on the marketing front, one thing has remained constant: Apple's emotional connection to consumers, who reward it with an almost cult-like loyalty. Though the brand almost petered out in the '90s, last year consumers told Interbrand that Apple was the thing they couldn't live without and the one they found most inspiring. Why? Perhaps it's Apple's vaguely antiauthoritarian stance (epitomized in its iconic "1984" ad). A true-in-practice focus on relentlessly improving its products also helps. But maybe it comes down to this: Most brands are run by committee, but this one is the embodiment of a living, breathing person. Steve Jobs is Apple in the way that Richard Branson is Virgin. Of course it helps when you're a brilliant marketer who happens to be the CEO.
Readers agreed with Adweek’s choice, also voting Apple brand of the decade. Steve et alia were followed by Google and Starbuck in this category.
Apple was the most successful tech company in Adweek's Best of the 2000s awards.
Adweek’s Product of the Decade also belonged to Apple. The iPod, which came out in 2001, preceded the iPhone in becoming the brand for an entire sector of devices, something that Apple had not accomplished previously.
Readers disagreed with this, voting the iPhone the Product of the Decade, with the iPod coming in second, followed, again, by Google. The only non-tech item in the top eight were, um, Crocs (commentary withheld).
Perhaps annoyingly to some, Apple’s “Get a Mac” (AKA Mac vs. PC) ad campaign was picked Campaign of the Decade. Polarizing, the campaign unleashed Justin Long upon an unprepared Earth; on the flip side, it drastically increased Renaissance man John Hodgman’s visibility.
Google finally got top spot in Media/Digital Company of the Decade, but there’s no denying that, in terms of brand visibility – if not ubiquity – Apple was the company of the decade.
Adweek’s Digital Device/Platform of the Decade went to Facebook – whose Beacon probably deserves nomination as Ad Fail of the Decade – though readers once again chose the iPhone/Google/iPod triumvirate.