How could Apple get success—an analysis of customer behavior.


Apple Inc is a technology company which headquartered in Cupertino, California. It was established in 1976 by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak as well as Ronald Wayne. Apple was focus on personal computer and computer applications for costumers and now it has gotten success in variety of products for example iPhone, iPad and iMac, etc.

apple market share

According to IDC analysis (2015), iPhone took 13.9 percentage of the worldwide smartphone market share which was following Samsung in 2015 Q2. In addition, Apple keeps to get success on its big screen mobile phone. The sales volume went up 35 percentage year over year. Also, Apple has accumulated amount of loyal customers. How Apple could do it? Is any secret hide in their success?

Apple’s marketing based on customer behavior.

The reason why Apple get such a success is because their insight of customer behavior.

Needs are the basic of purchasing behavior. Maslow stated there are five levels of human needs. The most basic one is psychological need. And then, they are safety needs, social needs, esteem need. The top one is self-actualization needs, which is the famous Maslow’s hierarchy needs theory.

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Most products from Apple belong to high-end products because they are high-technique products and not cheap. According to Maslow’s hierarchy needs, owning an iPhone or an iMac could satisfy their esteem need. For example, in China, many young people purchase Apple’s products since it could represent their wealth and status.

Customer involvement


     Customer involvement plays a very important role in marketing which could influence customers purchasing behavior. It is also quiet necessary during the process of Apple marketing strategy. There are 3 factors could effect customer involvement which are personal factors, product factors and situational factors.

Personal factors

Personal factors include self-image, personal characteristic, etc. Apple focus on high technique and fashion. Advertisements of Apple mainly express that Apple’s products instead of fashion and high-end products. Although the price of Apple is not cheap, there are still many customers would like to purchase it. Since it could satisfy a well self-image.

Product factors

Product factors means that if there is a perceived risk when they buy a particular brand or products. This risk is mainly from the quality of products and the expectation of its future price. In terms of this aspect, IOS system is easy to handle even for a 3-year old baby. Besides that, Apple really do well in their after-sales service. In addition, the price of Apple’s products hardly to reduce. If there is a high likelihood that the future price would reduce, customers are not willing to purchase it now. Therefore, since the price will remain for a long time, customers will buy it at any time as long as they want.

Situational factors

Situational factor relates to the customer environment. A customer environment relies on social and physical attributes (2015). For example, if peers around a customer are all using iPhone, iPad or iMac, the customer is easy to be effected by those peers, which motivate that customer to purchase Apple’s products. A person in this world is not individual. Therefore, their motivation, decision, and process of purchasing behavior is easily to be influenced by situational factors.


So besides customer involvement, what other factors could influence customer behavior?


Cultural factors

Cultural factor comes from different parts associated to culture or cultural environment about that customers belong to. American culture is a kind of multi-culture. It shows freedom and creation. Apple keeps focusing on creation. Because of its creation, it represents new things and fashion. That is why it can occupy such big market share.

Psychological factors


In terms of psychological factors, Apple mainly uses following 4 aspects in its marketing strategy in order to influence customer behavior, which are motivation, sensation and perception, learning and memory, beliefs and attitudes.

To grow sales and encourage purchasing behavior, Apple is trying to create a need in customers’ mind and guide customers produce purchase motivation.

Apple also use sensation and perception to motivate customer behavior. For example, in terms of visual, the big screen and extreme thin body could catch customers’ eyes. Its fashion appearance especially metal shell attracts many young and character people.

Learning and memory through action. People learn while they act. If customers have good experience while they purchase some products, there is a high likelihood that they may repeat to buy is. To keep the loyal customers and expand the new customers, Apple pays attention to spread their idea by advertisement and provide a good service to no matter online or offline customer so that can create a good experience for them.

For some customers, Apple is not only a brand, but also a belief. Every time when Apple issue a new product, there are thousands of people to queue up for it all around the world. Those loyal customers are also called “Apple fans”.




Aanstoos, CM 2014, ‘Maslow’s hierarchy of needs’, Salem Press Encyclopedia of Health, retrieved 30 July 2016,<>

IDC Research Inc. 2015, Smartphone Vendor Market Share, 2015 Q2, IDC Research Inc, retrieved 30 July 2016,<>

Perreau, F 2016, The Consumer Factor: Consumer Insight, Market Research, Consumer Behavior & Neuromarketing, The Consumer Factor, retrieved 30 July 2016,


Rangaswamy, E 2015, ‘A Study on the Critical Success Factors of iPad Focusing on the Buyer Behaviour and Involvement’, Amity Global Business Review, vol. 10, pp. 95-109, retrieved 30 July 2016, <>

Zoeller, S 2015, How Apple Uses Consumer Behavior Marketing to Win, Stephen Zoeller’s Marketing Blog, retrieved 30 July 2016,



Zhao White

student ID: 216206535

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