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Think Different

"Think Different" was a major advertising campaign that Apple Inc. conducted between 1997 and 2002 to re-launch the company after nearly going bankrupt. In 1997, Steve Jobs was busy trying to save the company by cutting back spending. At the same time, he wanted to reinvent the company with a new advertising campaign to remind the world what Apple stood for. Jobs asked the Los Angeles based advertising agency TBWAChiatDay to craft a campaign that reminded the world what Apple was about, what the company meant. At the time, Jobs often talked about how successful Apple had been in the past. "What are we going to do to recapture the spirit of that company?" he asked. "We've got some great products coming but we need to communicate to the world what the company stands for."

The TBWAChiatDay team quickly came to the conclusion that Apple isn't like other companies. It doesn't follow the rules. It thinks different. The slogan, Think Different, was dreamed up by an art director named Craig Tanimoto at TBWAChiatDay. It was based on the idea that the spark driving Apple existed long before Apple. In fact, it existed long before electricity. The ability to think creatively is one of the great catalysts of civilization. So why not show what kind of company Apple is by celebrating the people Apple admires? Let's acknowledge the most remarkable people – past and present – who "change things" and "push the human race forward." Jobs jumped on the idea quickly and it became an Apple history defining moment.

The Think Different campaign ran for five years and became a huge success. Customers loved it too. The slogan became a rallying cry and motivation for Apple employees. The advertising campaign won many awards, including the first Emmy for a commercial.

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