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Don’t embarrass your fans

Apple has unleashed a firestorm by lowering the price of the iPhone $200 … only 10 weeks after the launch.  Plenty of people have written about it, but you know you have trouble when Matt Lauer complains about it live on the Today show:

Matt Lauer: "By the way, the iPhone I bought just a couple of months ago for $599 …"

Meredith Vieira: "Sucker."

Lauer: "… they slashed the price to $399."

Vieira: "Oh well, you know. Someone’s born everyday just like you."

Everyone understands that electronics are going to get cheaper. Everyone understands that the early adopters pay a hefty premium.

But early adopters are also your die-hard fans, your true believers, your lovers.

The deal is simple: 1) Fans give you unquestioning passion and support.  2) You make them look cool, smart, and fashionable.

Apple broke the deal. 

By lowering the price so quickly Apple made their fans look stupid.  They felt used, and they felt like fools for believing in the company. These people spent the last month showing off their phone to everyone they know.  Now they look stupid to all those friends.

I don’t know how long Apple should have waited (6 months?), but it wasn’t enough.  You’d feel just as angry if you bought something from Prada and saw them selling it at Target weeks later. 

Apple, these people slept in the mud for you.  Show some respect.

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