Wolff Olins Global CEO Karl Heiselman hired by Apple to take on new marketing role in May


Following this week’s revelations that Apple SVP of Marketing Phil Schiller is unhappy with the direction of the company’s advertising and agency, and that Apple is considering hiring as many as four new digital agencies to further enhance its advertising efforts, it seems the company has added a formidable new member to its marketing team.

17_london-2012-olympic-logo-pink-blueAd Age reports that Apple has hired Karl Heiselman, who is currently the CEO of the Wolff Olins branding agency. Heiselman will take on an undisclosed role in the company’s marketing arm next month, he confirmed. This won’t be the executive’s first time in Cupertino. Heiselman previously worked for Apple in the ’90s as a design contractor.

At Wolff Olins, Heiselman headed up numerous high tech and high profile branding efforts including Product (RED) for Bono, the 2012 Olympics for London (right) and numerous Microsoft campaigns including the ill-fated Kin. The company also churned out “re-invention” for brands such as Aol, Sony, Skype, Belkin and Firefox…

Apple’s recent hiring spree and Schiller’s testimony during the Samsung patent trial both point to a company struggling to solidify its identity in an ever-growing sea of look-alike competitors. Perhaps Heiselman’s branding expertise will help set the company back on the right path.

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  1. Hey I’ve got an idea – how about you INNOVATE your way out of this instead of just coming up with clever marketing?

    • jakexb - 9 years ago


      Apple got to the top by being good at BOTH. It’s not enough to have one.

      Marketing is a very real need when you have companies like Samsung drilling into people’s heads that they’ve got “the next big thing”.

      99% of people aren’t reading tech blogs like this, ready to hear the details of every new Apple product.

    • Tallest Skil - 9 years ago

      You insane?

    • Alex (@Metascover) - 9 years ago

      Good idea! If only they could come up with something like new fingerprint sensor tech in a unique implementation. That would be cool!

    • rogifan - 9 years ago

      Innovate their way out of what?

      • Michael Perry - 9 years ago

        Out of the fact that their lunch is being taken over the past year.

    • Michael Perry - 9 years ago

      Wow, I was literally just opening up this page from my RSS reader to make the same comment. I’ve been an Apple fan for a long time now. I’ve owned every iPhone (even the original at $600), 3 Mac Minis, 1 Mac Book, 2 MacBook Pro’s, every iPad (except the mini retina), and a Mac Pro. I’ve flamed in forums when it seemed when people haven’t given them what I would deem a fair chance over the years and I was all about revenge and payback and Samsung getting what they deserve for their slimy copying ways. All that to say I’m about as big of a fan as you can get; heck I even bought several friends ‘onesees’ for their new babies from the actual Apple store in Cupertino. Even as a huge fan there comes a point where you have to wonder if all the money, effort, and fiery motivation spent on lawsuits and marketing could actually just be spent on making better products and really come up with new things to wow their customers again?

      I mean sure, every year there’s a new iPhone and it’s pretty cool but it seems every year other than the 1 neat added feature (or gimmick depending on your usage and/or experience) like Siri, or the fingerprint reader it seems they fall further and further behind the competition in what they offer for the money. However they stay content to remain smug because in their minds they produce the best products no matter what the products they actually release contains. Case in point, all indications are pointing to a 389ppi screen which means a resolution of somewhere around 1600×966. Now I know these are just rumors but looking at all previous released phones by Apple, this odd non-standards based resolution seems to be par the course. Why not give us 1080P for a $700 phone? The competition gives us 1080P for $500 phones so… where’s the disconnect? But but but, the build quality and user experience make up for the price we pay for lower specs right? Not so fast. According to some reports the current version of iOS crashes more than the current version of Android. Additionally HTC uses an all metal almost unibody like design with a big beautiful screen, Full-HD 1080P, resolution, great colour reproduction and tremendous battery life; however it costs slightly less than the iPhone 5S and presumably the iPhone 6 as well. Maybe I’m just venting and ranting here but at times I feel like Apple shafts us just because they can and having someone piss in your cereal and tell them it’s somehow better for you than milk get’s old after a while.

      • Tallest Skil - 9 years ago

        Seems like a lot of words to say “I am a troll, ignore everything I say.”

  2. jakexb - 9 years ago

    I am so psyched about this. Wolff Olins is a seriously awesome agency.

  3. Lee Omeka - 9 years ago

    Olympic Logo for London was just dreadful – Microsoft Kin -looks like he as a checked history of hit and miss

  4. The man who OK’d the worst logo in Olympics history. Can’t wait to see how this turns out.