Mac Turns 30 And Apple Still Has People Talking

By Sheldon Levine - Thursday, January 23rd, 2014 at 8:37 am  

This week Apple’s first hit, the Mac, turns 30. Right from the get go Apple liked to make a splash when they launched a product. The original Macintosh computer was launched 30 years ago this week in 1984 during the Super Bowl with this now iconic commercial (which happens to have been directed by Ridley Scott):

That commercial got a lot of people talking when it aired for the first time. Unfortunately, we don’t have social media data from 1984 to show it to you and prove it, so you’ll just have to take our word for it.

Today is no different. Apple is still a company that can get people talking about their products. To prove it, we pulled up some social media statistics using MAP, our social media monitoring and analytics software, from the past year to show you just how much people love to talk about Apple stuff.

Doing a search for most of the common apple products (different Macs and Mac books, iPods of all sorts, iPhones and Apple TVs) we found that Apple products got over 601 million times through social channels. We found these products mentioned in 7,553,610 blog posts, 6,669,396 online news articles, 25,966575 forum postings and in an incredible 561,293,760 tweets.

MAP, Powered by Sysomos - Activity Summary

That’s an incredible amount of tweets. Many brands have tried, but none can replicate that magic from Apple that gets people talking. If we break down those tweets it equals to Apple products getting mentioned in 63,900 tweets per hour throughout the last year. We can also see that women are more likely to talk about Apple products on Twitter than men.

MAP, Powered by Sysomos - Twitter Activity Summary

Looking at the mentions across all the channels plotted out over the past year we see that Apple products have people talking about them year round. However, one product these days seems to rule the conversation. That very large spike in mentions that we see in September was actually the day of their event where they announced the iPhone 5S and 5C.

MAP, Powered by Sysomos - Popularity Chart

When we pulled up a word cloud to see what themes really stuck out from the conversation, we can see evidence from the popularity chart above supported. The largest word right in the middle of our word cloud is the iPhone. It’s also interesting to note though, that while Apple products did get mentioned a lot throughout the last year, that they also got mentioned beside some of their competitors a lot. This is evidenced by the quite noticeable size that both “Windows” and “Android” appear in the word cloud.

MAP, Powered by Sysomos - Word Cloud

You may have also noticed that the word cloud above is not entirely made up of English. Well, that’s because Apple products are very popular around the world. The United States mentioned Apple products the most and accounted for 30% of all mentions, but right behind them was China who took up 18.9% of the conversation. Many other countries made considerable amounts of mentions of Apple products as we can see in the chart below, but most pale in comparison next to how much the United States and China seem to love their gadgets.

MAP, Powered by Sysomos - Country Breakdown

But Apple’s hype machine doesn’t stop at hardware. They also make some of the most used software in the world. Software like their operating systems that power their hardware like OSX, Mavricks and iOS. Then there’s also software like iTunes, iPhoto, iMovie, Garage Band and Safari. While the hardware Apple makes gets a lot of attention, it’s not like their software gets forgotten. A search for mentions of their software over the past year also reveals quite a lot of conversations too. The number of Apple software mentions tops 118 million mentions in the past year. We found 3,178,870 blog pos, 2,927,132 online news articles, 6,106,326 forum postings and 106,086,168 tweets about these pieces of software.

MAP, Powered by Sysomos - Activity Summary

¬†Again, we took a bit of a deeper dive into the mentions on Twitter as it’s the social channel that drove the most amount of conversation around Apple software. Here we found that Apple products got mentioned at an average of 289,853 times a day over the past year, or 12,077 times an hour. What’s most interesting here though is the gender breakdown of who was talking. Above we saw that women mentioned Apple hardware products more often than men, but when it comes to software men were more likely to be doing the talking. It’s interesting because it shows us that women seem to care more about the actual piece of hardware they have, but men were more into talking about what they were actually using on their hardware.

MAP, Powered by Sysomos - Twitter Activity Summary

And which piece of software that Apple makes showed the largest amounts of conversation? Well, when we trended the mentions of Apple software out over the past year we see that the largest spike in conversation occurred on September 18th. This was the day that iOS7 was made available to the world. This corresponds with what we saw above with the iPhone being their most talked about piece of hardware, as this was the latest software that almost all iPhone users could now upgrade too, and it shows that they were very much into it.

MAP, Powered by Sysomos - Popularity Chart

Again, this is backed up by a word cloud about the conversations around Apple software. Here, iOS is the largest word found in our word cloud. However, iTunes, Apple’s music player and support software for it’s products running iOS seemed to take up a large part of conversation as well. And there’s actually an interesting reason for this.

MAP, Powered by Sysomos - Word Cloud

While exploring this data we also looked at what the most retweeted tweets were about their software products were. This was extremely interesting as it reviled something that we’ve seen many times before when analyzing conversations of all sorts on Twitter; when Justin Bieber or a member of One Direction tweet, their hordes of fans will retweet whatever they say. A look at the top 6 most retweeted tweets about a piece of Apple software shows that either of these two can promote something of theirs on iTunes on Twitter and see it retweeted hundreds of thousands of times. The most retweeted tweet of the past year that contained a piece of Apple software in it was Louis Tomlinson’s tweet about a One Direction song hitting number 1 on iTunes download charts. The other 5 of 6 tweets were all from Junstin Bieber who was also talking about his music on iTunes.

MAP, Powered by Sysomos - Most Retweeted Tweets

As you can see, from 1984 to today, Apple has a kind of magic when it comes to getting people talking. Do think they can keep this up for another 30 years?

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One Response to “Mac Turns 30 And Apple Still Has People Talking”

  1. […] a survey released on Thursday, the research firm Market Wired took a look at how people are talking about the company in blogs and on social […]