The two most “dreaded, hated” words at Apple under Steve Jobs were “branding” and “marketing.”
“In Steve’s mind people associated brands with television advertising and commercials and artificial things. The most important thing was people’s relationship to the product. So any time we said ‘brand’ it was a dirty word. Marketing is when you have to sell to somebody. If you aren’t providing value, if you’re not educating them about the product, if you’re not helping them get the most out of the product, you’re selling. And you shouldn’t be in that mode.”
Johnson explains that Apple treated its launch campaigns as massive efforts to educate the public about the company’s new products by effectively communicating what made the experience using them so great:
“The marketing team was right next to the product development and engineering teams. So we understood deeply what was important about the product, what the team’s motivations were in the product, what they hoped that product would achieve, what role they wanted it to have in people’s lives.”
Note the similarities between “If you’re not helping them get the most out of the product, you’re selling; and you shouldn’t be in that mode” and Jason Fried’s radical approach to marketing.