updated 01:53 am EDT, Thu June 5, 2014
Separation may not be acrimonious: Apple ad team made up of TBWA alumni
According to a new report, Apple is moving its TV ad spot creation in-house, using employees that are either liasoned or poached from its long-time ad agency. Members or former members of TBWA Chiat Day are said to be part of the new internal Apple TV commercial team, and Bloomberg is reporting that many of the more recent Apple commercials, including the "Your Verse" and the latest "More Powerful" ads, are the work of Apple's own team rather than its ad agency.
Apple's relationship to TBWA appears to have frayed since Steve Jobs' death in 2011, with some emails from last year -- revealed during the second Apple-Samsung patent trial -- suggesting that SVP of Worldwide Marketing Phil Schiller and the agency were not getting along. The spat between agency and client came about after a Samsung ad blitz proved effective at making media critics question Apple's superiority, prompting Schiller to demand that Chiat Day respond. However, the initial responses from the team were viewed by Schiller as out of touch with Apple's mission, leading Schiller to suggest to CEO Tim Cook that the firm be replaced
To date, the company has not formally dropped TBWA Chiat Day from its roster of ad agencies, suggesting that the issues were later resolved over the last year. However, Apple has always been a client that demanded collaboration, secrecy and control in fashioning its image, and recent reports have said that the iPhone maker has been hiring additional consultants for web and print advertising in an effort to further evolve and diversify its ad campaigns and promotional spending.
TBWA Chiat Day has been responsible for the bulk of Apple's TV advertising over the decades, much of it regarded as some of the world's most influential commercials. In an earlier incarnation, the agency was responsible for Apple's "1984" ad introducing the Macintosh, the 1997 "Think Different" and "Mac vs. PC" campaigns that were considered very memorable, and may also have been in charge of last Christmas' noteworthy "Misunderstood" ad, which garnered wide-ranging praise.