Macworlds around the globe are filing their 'Reviews of the Year' concerning Apple's marketing efforts for 1999. Here's the report from Macworld Italia.

Milan - From the Italian point of view, Apple's autumn 1999 advertising campaign fell a little short of the 1998 edition. In autumn 1998, the much-anticipated iMac had just been introduced with great fanfare. 1999 brought us fewer TV spots, fewer billboards and generally less media attention. In contrast, Apple increased its ad investments in the trade press (at least as far as Macworld Italia is concerned).

The closest that Apple got to SMAU (the international exhibition of information & communications technology - Europe's leading ICT event held in the Mediterranean region) was buying the back cover and a DPS in Macworld Italia's show issue. But, for the second year in a row, Italy's main computer trade show featured the Mac Show, a special area dedicated to the Mac OS.

While most Italian Mac distributors, third parties, resellers and developers were there, Apple failed to put in an appearance.
In keeping with its global marketing strategies, Apple decided that appearing at SMAU would no longer contribute to its image or affect its marketing plans.

As for Mac market share in Italy, the opinion of Apple sources is that it has risen slightly but steadily over the past year, definitely moving toward the consumer market. According to Giuseppe Aiello, Apple's Italian marketing manager, orders for iBook and the new iMac DV models were higher than the actual availability of the computers.

Finally, a humorous note (or maybe not so silly if you consider the psyche of Italian consumers): On Italian furniture catalogues and ads for luxury items, iMacs and blue-and-white G3s have definitely supplanted the traditional Windows boxes.