Not Just Financials: Apple PR execution is Super Bowl worthy

The San Francisco 49ers' Super Bowl XXIX trophy on display at the 49ers' Family Day at Candlestick Park. Photo by BrokenSphere
The San Francisco 49ers' Super Bowl XXIX trophy on display at the 49ers' Family Day at Candlestick Park. Photo by BrokenSphere

Apple (AAPL) is demonstrating that its execution is worthy of a Super Bowl appearance. While this may not be 1984, Apple’s PR team is at it again. This time, they orchestrated the news that CEO Steve Jobs would take yet another medical leave in the best manner possible: by mitigating its negative potential by knocking investors off their beer stools with stunning Q1 results the following day.

Yesterday’s news about Jobs leave fell on a holiday while markets were closed. While Apple stock took a hit in Europe, investors here in the U.S. had time to digest the information, do some G2 on next-in-line COO Timothy Cook (who’s no stranger to the limelight at Apple) and nurse a beer or two while they contemplated the potential impact the departure would have on the company… and, most importantly, the stock. In essence, the timing of the first announcement quelled fears and all but eliminated the knee-jerk reaction that likely would have occurred had the news fell on a regular trading day.

Not content, of course, to merely tap dance, Apple came back today with its second announcement. And it was a doozy. Sure, we all know that Apple is on a phenomenal track, and is now the world’s second most valuable company. Rightfully so. It’s one of the leading innovators, and is changing our relationship — as humans — with computers.

Someone one please call the Falcons.

By the numbers which you’ve probably seen by now, Q1 was an outcome of blow-out proportions: $26.74 billion revenue, net income $6 billion, or $6.43 a share, a 78 percent (!) gain from a year earlier, and $9.8 billion in cash flow generated.

More importantly, the iPad has cracked open a new and hugely lucrative market for Apple. 7.33 units moved during the quarter. More telling, though, was the 75% increase q/q which indicates increasing consumer acceptance of the new device.

And what about Apple stock?

Shaken, but not stirred. AAPL finished the day down 1.25%, but is up after hours just above a point. Far less than the 10% drop that many analysts predicted on Monday.

Jobs is leaving for a while, but the company is executing — on the financial front, on the innovation front, and the publicity front — like nobodody’s business.

Can the Pittsburgh Steelers, Green Bay Packers, New York Jets and Chicago Bears glean anything here?

Probably not. But some times — certainly not always apparently! — actions speak louder than words.

Photo credit:  BrokenSphere © BrokenSphere / Wikimedia Commons

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