At Burberry Tariq was head of digital marketing focusing on "strategy and innovation" while at Nike he served to build deeper relationships with athletes. Apple's head of retail, Angela Ahrendts, is the former CEO of Burberry, so its interesting to see the two working together again. Tariq confirmed the news on Twitter: "First day of school. Hope the other kids like me!"
Apple's role in social media has been fairly limited. Aside from a few iTunes and App Store Twitter/Facebook accounts, the company has been relatively off the radar. Some Senior Vice Presidents such as Tim Cook and Phil Schiller remain semi-active on twitter as well. It is possible that Apple brought on Tariq to help bolster its social and digital media marketing presence with a focus on Apple Retail.
At Nike, Tariq helped bring its advertising efforts in-house, similar to what Apple is doing right now as it reduces its reliance on ad agency TBWA.