Samsung preps ‘even bigger’ campaign for Galaxy S4

Samsung is hoping the launch campaign for its latest flagship smartphone the Galaxy S4, which will focus on how the device can improve consumers’ quality of life, will boost preference for the corporate brand and its handsets by more than 30 per cent.


The electronics company launched the much-anticipated S4 – which includes a range of new features such as a 13 megapixel camera, eye tracking and an in-built fitness tracker app – at a glitzy New York City event last week.

In May Samsung will kick off its “biggest ever” marketing campaign to date, surpassing that of its predecessor the S3, according to Ines van Gennip, Samsung UK and Ireland marketing director for IT and Mobile

She would not reveal to Marketing Week the exact campaign budget, but Kantar Media predicts Samsung will spend $150m marketing the device globally – more than the $108m Apple spent on marketing for the iPhone 5 last year.

Van Gennip predicts the campaign will be its most efficient following econometric research conducted by its media agency Starcom Mediavest that determined TV and the brand’s own website provide the best ROI amongst its audience of tech savvy consumers, the areas where it will focus the majority of spend.

Samsung has not yet finalised creative with its global advertising agency Cheil Worldwide, but all elements of the campaign will encompass the strapline “life companion”.

Marketing activity will pick out four of the key features of the phone which are loosely based around Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs (see box), to give the phone a more human side and demonstrate how it can offer consumers “a better quality of life”.

Van Gennip says as well as outselling the S3, Samsung is hoping the marketing activity supporting the S4 will boost the brand’s “most preferred single answer” scores. The S3 increased Samsung’s corporate brand score by 30 per cent from 2011 in the general electronics space and 27 per cent in the smartphone segment – numbers Van Gennip hopes it will hit again or ideally beat this year.

She acknowledged as Samsung has moved into a global leadership position in terms of market share, competitors are now looking to take aim at the company in its marketing, whereas before they may have directed such digs at Apple – indeed Apple’s marketing chief Phil Schiller gave rare interviews to US press a day before the S4 launch to downplay the “inferior” device.

Van Gennip said: “The kinds of things competitors are now doing comes by [Samsung] moving into the leadership position. We have to make sure we focus on our own activity and make the best experience for our consumers and partners.”

Samsung UK is preparing to launch the activity without the leadership of Andrew Garrihy, whose corporate marketing director role was made redundant as a result of a “strategic change in direction” earlier this month.

The four ‘human’ elements of Samsung’s forthcoming marketing campaign


Picking out features of the phone that help users build relationships and communicate, such as the Group Play function and S-Translator

Meaningful moments

Fun features that capture moments such as the Dual Camera function, Story Album and Sound & Shot.

Simplifying everyday tasks

Functions that make life more convenient such as the Smart Pause eyetracking video pause function, S Voice Drive control and Air View/Gesture, which allows users to control the phone without touching it.


Focusing on wellbeing elements such as the in-built S-Health fitness tracker app and Samsung Adapt Display, which automatically adjusts the display depending on the external lighting.