Give Yourself “The Apple Experience”

The Apple ExperienceApple and Steve Jobs fans – REJOICE!  It’s another book about Apple from Carmine Gallo (@carminegallo).   I received an early review copy of this book a few weeks ago – right after I had yet another uninspired experience at the local Apple store.

As you may know from my previous reviews, I am generally ambivalent about the whole cult of Apple.  In other words, I just don’t get it.  In fact, I’m supposed to be their target audience, but it just isn’t connecting with me.  So, once again, I’m going to read and review a book in search of what I’ve been missing.

If you’ve ever stood outside an Apple store for hours just to get the latest iPhone, iPad or other Apple product, then you’re going to want to run out and get Gallo’s newest book, The Apple Experience: Secrets to Building Insanely Great Customer Loyalty.

Carmine Gallo has a special place inside Apple.  After all, he’s written The Innovation Secrets of Steve Jobs and The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs.  But Gallo writes about more than Apple and Steve Jobs. He’s also written The Power of Foursquare which we’ve reviewed here.

In The Apple Experience, Gallo interviews professionals at all levels who have spent hundreds of hours studying and observing Apple store employees in their natural habitat.  How do they do that magic thing they do?  You’ll have to read the whole book to find out.  But here are a few nuggets before you get your own.

Did You Know?

“A group of UK scientists studied Apple store visitors and found out that Apple actually triggers the same area of the brain that light up during religious experiences.”

“In 2011. Gary Allen drove thousands of miles from Oakland, California to celebrate the tenth anniversary of the first Apple store in Tyson’s Corner Virginia.”  There wasn’t a special event planned there – he just decided to go, blogging all the way.  When he arrived, the Apple store employees were expecting him (having been following his journey via his blog).  He had a religious experience.

Apple store customers are free to express themselves.  Just search YouTube for “Apple store dance” and you’ll find thousands of clips of people who recorded themselves dancing inside an Apple store.

“You’ll never wait more than three minutes in an apple store.” When customers enter a busy Apple store, they may have waited a few minutes before they are served.  But as soon as they are approached by a friendly associate who engages them in conversation and gives them a little assistance, their “clock” is reset to zero.  In the meantime, other employees have been notified as well as the manager.  The key to their success is the level of information that they share with their customers.

What You’ll Find Inside The Apple Experience

The Apple Experience breaks down Apple’s customer centered business model into three parts:  Inspiring Your Internal Customer, Serving Your External Customer and Setting the Stage.

At the end of each chapter, you’ll find a “checkout” section where Gallo gives suggestions and questions that you can take on as an assignment to take your business to the Apple level of service.  Here are a few examples:

  • Visit an Apple store and watch the employees
  • Foster empowerment
  • Offer genuine praise
  • Greet within ten seconds
  • Designate role models
  • Create daily opportunities for feedback between you and your staff

Who Will LOVE This Book?

Of course, if you have a retail business, then this is a must read.  But this book holds more in store than just retail lessons.  Business owners and managers in any industry can benefit from lessons such as creating a message map to clearly communicate the benefits of your product.  Gallo outlines Apples simple promotional taglines that can fit inside 140 characters – right-sized for Twitter.

This book isn’t just for owners and managers — anyone working in retail and interacting with customers would benefit from the observations and lessons that are contained in this book.

The Apple Experience will give you a behind-the-scenes look at what sets the Apple experience apart from so many others.  Pick up a copy for yourself and see how you can apply it to your business.

Ivana Taylor Ivana Taylor is the Book Editor for Small Business Trends. She is responsible for directing the site’s book review program and manages the team of professional book reviewers. She also spearheads the annual Small Business Book Awards. Ivana publishes DIYMarketers, where she shares daily do-it-yourself marketing tips, and is co-author of "Excel for Marketing Managers."