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"Heil Apple" Manual Given To OZ Retailers

By David Richards | Sunday | 22/09/2013

We all know how arrogant Apple management can be, now Australian retailers including the likes of Harvey Norman and JB Hi Fi have been given a manual on how not to sell the new Apple iPhone 5S or any other Apple product or face the wrath of Apple.

Also given their marching orders are carriers, Optus, Vodafone and Telstra.

Out is the use of YouTube, or the mention of glitches or hacking is out. Retailers are also banned from advertising on bus panels, taxis and aircraft, and posters bearing images of Apple are not allowed at bars, hotels, gyms or doctors' offices.

iPhone ads are only allowed only on well-lit billboards, shopping malls and bus shelters.

Apple demands the right to review every place where ads are to be displayed and reserves the right to ask a distributor to move its advertisement if it conflicts with Apple's own.

The secret marketing document obtained by Fairfax Media, runs to a dozen pages and specifies the format of advertisements in minute detail.

Retailers are even instructed to avoid exclamation marks and use of the word ''new''.

The guidelines cover promotional requirements in all media platforms, from digital to print, and dictate that all advertising must be approved in advance.

And lo and behold, if a retailer fails to comply with the diktats of Apple the US Company claims that it will cut off supply.

In the document Apple bans the words ''a'', ''the'', ''new'' or ''newest'' from use before the word ''iPhone'', frowns on the exclamation mark and slaps a blanket ban on a list of ''negative'' words. The forbidden list includes ''second hand'', ''YouTube'', and ''Tim Cook [Apple's CEO]'', ''jailbreak'', ''stolen'', ''broken'', ''crushed'' and ''hacked''.

Those retail executives who have offended Apple in Australia have faced strings of expletives if advertisements deviated even slightly from the media guidelines.

''Apple is very difficult to deal with and very particular. Media releases take days to clear and sometimes they have to be cleared by Tim Cook himself,'' said the executive. ''They know they can get away with it because of who they are.''

The executive said Apple had been easier to deal with this year as excitement around the brand had receded.

Fairfax Media said that for advertisements that appear in print, Apple prefers only full-page ads in big metropolitan newspapers and magazines.

Apple demands TV commercials run nationally during mainstream programs, more than half of which must be in prime time.

The company also has rules on advertising in all digital media, including online video, online display, and tablet, mobile and social media.

Apple makes it clear it does not want its distributors to advertise on YouTube, a site owned by its arch-rival Google, by banning YouTube in-stream ads. Google's Android is the largest competitor to Apple's iOS operating system.

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