Beyond the screen

Samsung Bebo Nights

Promoting a mobile phone to a teenage audience requires a brand to build a certain amount of street cred. When Samsung wanted to promote its music handset portfolio, The Beat Edition, it launched a video-based music show on Bebo.

The branded content produced by Endemol for the electronics brand provides Bebo users with music news, videos and interviews while advertising the phone. The show is played out on a screen wrapped with the shape of the Beat handset and during the show, presenters use the phone. More than 3.2 million people have viewed the videos since the launch claims Bebo.

Samsung UK marketing director Mikah Martin-Cruz says using video on a social networking site has allowed the brand to communicate the core values of the phone to the right audience.

He says: “When you look at social media it enables us to engage with Bebo users with unique content that really builds advocacy with our target audience.”

Agency Octagon co-ordinated the campaign. Garry Dods, vice-president of music and entertainment, says using online video is the right way to tell the story of the Beat phone.

He says the show allows teenagers to interact with the brand rather than simply seeing it as advertising. “Effectively you’ve got kids who see themselves as champions of their own lifestyle. Here’s a show that empowers them. They write it and they host it. They’re having a constant interaction back and Samsung is responding to their comments.”

A partnership deal has extended the experience to eight monthly live events called Samsung Bebo Nights Live at the Gibson Guitar Studio, with content from the offline events made available to watch online.

Samsung is looking to use this format to promote other products to different target groups. Martin-Cruz says: “Online content is incredibly important to us and it makes sense to export this across a number of other product markets and target audiences.”

He adds that using Bebo as an advertising vehicle has enabled the brand not only to advertise its products in an engaging, entertaining way to its target market but kicked off a creative campaign that goes far beyond the computer screen.

Case study: Philips

The glitz and the glamour of the Cannes Film Festival is an annual media obsession. And electronics brand Philips took advantage of this to promote its new Ambilight television set by working with video-sharing site Dailymotion to host footage from Cannes inside a special player designed to look like the new product.

Ambilight marketers were keen to make sure people understood how viewing the new TV set would make them feel by associating it with entertaining footage.

This is a trend that is set to continue, argues Luc Dumont, vice-president for international expansion at video service Dailymotion. He says it allows consumers to engage with the brand. “The Philips video showed how the media can blend in within the experience around content, technology and branding.”

But Dumont believes there’s much more potential for brands to use online video in future and claims: “We’re just touching the surface of it but the audience is there to make it a successful proposition.”

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