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Notes: F**k Apple — HEY and Epic Games Are Weaponizing Controversy

Vikrant Duggal
Vikrant Duggal
• 1 min read

Ari Lewis wrote an essay today titled "F**k Apple — HEY and Epic Games Are Weaponizing Controversy"

  • HEY is an email company and Epic Games is a software company
  • Both these companies are in a public dispute with Apple
  • They argue that the 30% fee Apple takes from in-app purchases is unfair
  • What makes it more interesting is the new strategy that both Epic and HEY are employing -- controversy as a marketing strategy (POTUS Playbook)
  • HEY attracted 185,000 sign-ups in its first four weeks. Its whole marketing strategy was predicated on picking a fight with Apple. Epic  is executing a similar strategy to HEY.
  • Instead of the target audience being press, the target audience is Fortnite users. They are informing their millions of Fortnite users that their app will be taken off the Apple App Store unless Apple changes their policy
  • HEY achieved a minor victory by getting Apple to cave on a few of the issues they raised.
  • Epic is suing Apple. This will not be a short fight.
  • How Far Will a Brand Go? Is controversy as a marketing strategy really worth it? Maybe it’s just a pyrrhic victory. Epic has created a brilliant video and an explosive lawsuit. But when will it end? And if they declare victory, will it be worth it?