Apple to Limit iPads, iPods, & iPhones for Giveaways? Say What?

Sweeties reader, Sydney, brought this article to my attention entitled, Apple Tries to Limit iPad Giveaways, (from EverythingiCafe) so I took a look for myself to see what they had to say and it brought me to the original article on CNN Money by Philip Elmer-DeWitt.

It seems that Apple is starting to enforce their Guidelines for Third Party Promotions to make companies comply with their strict guidelines for the use of their iPads, iPhones, and iPod touch products as prizes.

Here is a short run-down of the requirements:

  • iPad, iPhone and the iPhone Gift Card may not be used in third-party promotions (first paragraph of the document)
  • iPod touch is only allowed to be used in special circumstances and requires a minimum purchase of 250 units
  • You may NOT use the Myriad Set font on or in connection with web sites, products, packaging, manuals, or promotional/advertising materials.
  • Do not clutter Apple product photos with props, models or marketing messages
  • You must submit all marketing materials related to the promotion of Apple products to Apple for review

Strict adherence is essential because you and/or your company may be held responsible if your use of Apple products for promotional purposes do not conform with the following guidelines. In any event, we reserve the right to revoke our consent to your use of Apple products in your promotion at any time and for any reason. Read the full document for yourself here

Of course, the Apple iPad is the hottest prize on the planet right now because otherwise it wouldn’t matter. And since Apple is a booming company they can do just about anything they want I guess but my thought for Apple is: Aren’t you getting your product into the hands of people who may fall in love with them and turn around and tell their friend who buys one, who turns around and tells their friend, and so on and so on? Isn’t this call “word of mouth marketing“?

If I had a product and could afford to give it away I would want the world to try it and share the love with their friends. It’s the best free advertising a business can get. Heck, it’s not like these companies are asking Apple to give them the products for free so they can give them away – they are buying these product with their own money and giving them away and still they have to follow these guidelines.

Once you buy a product isn’t it yours to do what you want? So you are saying that if I buy an iPad, iPhone, iPod or other Apple product I can’t give it away if I don’t ask you or follow your guidelines? Phooey

As a business owner I do understand branding, trademarks, and the importance of having someone get your name right and they do include that in their document. I do agree that Apple should set standards on how their name can be used and how their products can be represented within the giveaway but, I am not quite sure I understand the purpose of putting such hard restrictions on the use of their products as prizes.

If Apple continues their restrictions and makes companies comply then maybe we will won’t see so many sweepstakes giving out iPads but that’s okay because while I love my iPad2, it can’t use it outside because of the screen glare and I really want to win a Blackberry PlayBook anyhow because it can run Flash 🙂

Source: CNN Money and everythingiCafe

Disclosure: this sweepstakes listing may contain an affiliate or tracking link but we do not use referral links. Read about our policies for more details.

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  1. Wow, just wow. I love Apple products, but stuff like this is exactly what irritates me about Apple. Also, have you looked into the Motorola Xoom? It is Android based, with flash. I played with one at Staples and liked it way more than I thought I would. The price is still a little steep, though.

  2. This is crazy! It is just nuts that these companies think that they are something special. Too good for a free giveaway?

    I read that some fashion designers that would rather have their clothing ripped up when they don’t sell on the shelves for hundreds of dollars than donated or given to charity!

  3. Another way in which Apple is short-sighted with this policy: After the iPad is in the hands of someone who might not normally buy one for themselves, the winner would still contribute to Apple’s coffers through the sale of media on iTunes and AppMarket. That’s an ongoing financial boost to them as compared to the one-time sale of the hardware. And Michelle hit on a good point too… they have some good competition out there now. I think they’re really shooting themselves in the foot by enforcing this policy.

  4. monika bigelolw says

    Apple must not realize how much free advertising they are really getting….I mean how many times a day are we posting how much we want to win and Ipad, not to mention how many times a day we say it !

  5. Carl Jenkins says

    I read this the other day and wondered whats up? The iPad2 has become the affordable “to die for item” for the masses. I have entered every sweeps that has them for prizes. Believe me when I say that Apple isn’t losing out on sales when the iPad2 is offered as prizes. Someone is buying them.

    I am typing this on my 24″ iMac. My cellphone is a Samsung Epic 4G thru Sprint. I would love to have all of Apple’s portable media for smoother integration of services. Sweepstakes is one way to achieve this goal. I must say that competition between the OEMs is working in my favor. I got the Samsung Epic 4G at Best Buy for free w/two year contract with Sprint.

    Hey, Android products connect and work well with my HP laptop. My sweeping habit may drive me to other worth while products if Apple stays stuck on stupid!

  6. I can actually understand where Apple is coming from with this. Hear me out.

    If I were running a promotion where the prize was prime seats at a sporting event, how close can I cut it between drawing a connection between the team and my company and its product that I’m promoting? Companies ordinarily have to give a lot of product, money, or both to be “the official x” of a team, and teams are loathe to let others ride on those coattails for free, or nearly so in the case of a pair of tickets to an event. If they do not take action to keep contests in line, their brand gets diluted by everyone hopping on board for a ride.

    Now, let’s fast forward to Apple. How many boards, facebook walls, internet forums, twitter feeds, and pretty much any other means of communication have you seen cluttered up with “FREE IPAD! THIS WORKS! MY COUSIN’S BROTHER’S FRIEND’S ROOMMATE JUST GOT HIS YESTERDAY!!!!!!1111!!!!oneone!!!!eleven!!! CLICK THIS LINK TO CLAIM YOUR FREE IPAD!” There’s a difference between a contest or sweepstakes that uses an ipad as a premium prize that people aspire to have, and some spammy data gathering hellhole that signs people up for services they can’t cancel and uses an ipad the same way a mousetrap uses cheese. Apple’s policy is written as broadly as possible, but in reality, will only be used against the latter.

    • Krissy Rouse Higgins says

      Mike T I KNEW this was a response from you before I even read your name, LOL.
      You do have a point – maybe they are looking at the ‘spammers’ not necessarily the bloggers with giveaways, or even the companies that are offering them as a prize.
      I get emails EVERYDAY especially since I am such an avid sweeper, that gives me a ‘promise’ of an ipad. They want to uphold the integrity of their name, instead of people being scared to ‘click’ on a link that states an ipad as a prize – I see both sides. I wish there was a way to get rid of these crazy spammers!

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