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Mac as a Personal Brand

The Macintosh Portable was Apple's first portable Macintosh. It was available from 1989 to 1991 and could run System 6 and System 7.

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Michal Ann Strahilevitz has been using a Mac for the past 15 years and developed a true relationship with Mac.  It has even become a personal brand for her.

Things have really changed over the years:

  1. It’s great that macs are now being embraced but
  2. It is no longer so meaningful to be a mac user. “When we were a small minority, it was a community of people who dared to not conform and who were willing to make an effort to use the machine they authentically preferred. it is no longer ‘think different’, as it is so much more common these days to see macs everywhere.”

She has never used anything but a mac at home or at work — over 15 years of nothing-but-a-mac. Used to be mac users would meet other mac users and bond over our willingness to stray from the masses and choose the machine we wanted rather than the machine that everyone else had. Back in the 90′s, we Mac users were a brand community!

As for work, up until recently, every time she started a new job and asked for a Mac, she had to negotiate and even beg to get one. The down side was that the tech support folks at work have never been willing to work on a mac. They would just about always roll their eyes when they hear the word “Mac.”

Today, more and more folks are switching to Apple, thanks to the popularity of iPod and Apple’s brilliant marketing efforts on everything from advertising to product design an Apple Store atmosphere.

It is getting easier and easier to be a mac user. We Mac people are becoming less of an under-represented minority and more of a “me too” community. It is easier, but not as fun. She no longer feels a connection to fellow mac users when she hit a cyber cafe. Why? Half the folks online there are also working on a Mac. So much for cutting edge. ; )

Michal Ann Strahilevitz PhD
Chaired Professor Marketing Dept
Golden Gate University

Michal Strahilevitz – A biography
Michal Ann Strahilevitz, PhD
Professor Michal Strahilevitz
is a chaired professor of marketing and consumer behavior at Golden Gate University. She has published articles in the Journal of Consumer Research, the Journal of Consumer Psychology, the Journal of Nonprofit & Public Sector Marketing and Marketing Letters. In addition to her expertise on consumer behavior, it is worth noting that her first computer was a Mac, and she has been using and nothing but a Mac for the past 15 years. It used to be an identity, but it has become a “me too” brand.