Apple Marketing Chief Phil Schiller Profiled as Key to Apple's Future Success

Bloomberg Businessweek publishes a new profile of Phil Schiller, Apple senior vice president of marketing who served for years as Steve Jobs' right-hand man regarding the company's public presentations and comments, but who has also been intimately involved in product development and positioning.

He helped Apple’s late CEO work through the meat-and-potatoes of creating new products: Defining target markets, determining technical specs, setting prices. It was Schiller who came up with the spin-wheel interface on the original iPod, and he was a champion of the iPad when other executives questioned its potential. “Because Phil’s title is marketing, people believe he’s focused on what’s on the billboards,” says Gene Munster, an analyst with Piper Jaffray (PJC). “He’s much more important than people give him credit for.”

The profile notes that while Schiller and Jobs appeared vastly different in their personal lives and interests, the two were always on the same wavelength with regard to Apple's plans, earning Schiller the internal nickname of "Mini-Me". Like Jobs, Schiller has also been known to be ruthless in shooting down ideas considered not good enough for Apple to pursue, earning him another nickname of "Dr. No".

Schiller is one of the key executives responsible for helping Apple maintain its momentum as it transitions away from Jobs' influence, and he knows that he will be one of those held most acutely responsible if Apple's future products fall short.

Schiller shares many of Jobs’s passions and impulses. The big question is how well he can channel them into new ideas and products. Four former Apple managers say many consider him overly controlling and worry that he lacks the bold creative instincts needed to maintain Apple’s edge. Particularly in his expanded marketing role, some fear he will be a more conventional leader, prone to hyping products in ways that tarnish Apple’s hard-won brand loyalty.

With the iPad now over two years old and experiencing booming growth, the pressure is on Apple to set the stage for its next breakthrough product, which some believe to be television. But regardless of Apple's plans, Schiller will be playing a key role in nurturing Apple's progress and serving as a public face for Apple to help spread its message.

Top Rated Comments

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109 months ago
Clearly the rock-star team of Cook, Schiller, Ive and Forstall are all a part of Apple's future success.
Score: 22 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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109 months ago
This doesn't surprise me. I've always liked Schiller, does his best to make keynote presentations interesting and fun.
Score: 20 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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109 months ago
Nobody doubts Steve's contributions into bringing Apple to where it is now. But most people forget that he didn't do it alone. I remember he always mentioned "we" on interviews, and I'm pretty sure Schiller is a big part of that we.
Score: 14 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
109 months ago

That was Steve Jobs, not Schiller


http://www.macworld.co.uk/apple-business/news/?newsid=3361440
Naming the iMac
It was Segall who came up with the name iMac, which Jobs eventually warmed to after initially “hating” it. The “i” stood for Imagination, Individual and Internet, among other positive notions.

Steve had wanted to call the new Bondi Blue computer “MacMan” – a “pretty darn stupid” name apparently dreamed up by Apple Marketing chief Phil Schiller.

Other names that were considered, which Segall is now embarrassed by, were “EveryMac” and “MiniMac”.

(Jobs had history in ridiculous name ideas: he once*wanted to call the Macintosh "Bicycle".)

*“If it weren’t for me, you’d probably be sitting there with your PhoneMan right now,” Segall quipped.

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Scott Forstall has much better presentation skills

Schillers seems more natural. Forstall seems more phony, like he's trying to hard to be a mini-Steve. Amazing that the guy supposedly closest to Steve (Ive) doesn't appear to have a personality anything like Steve's.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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109 months ago

No! There can only be one.


Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
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109 months ago

Particularly in his expanded marketing role, some fear he will be a more conventional leader, prone to hyping products in ways that tarnish Apple's hard-won brand loyalty.

Epic bulls*it.
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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