Samsung’s advertising game outmuscled Apple in 2012

Wed, Mar 13, 2013


samsung apple mobile advertising

With Samsung set to release its Samsung Galaxy S IV tomorrow in New York City amidst much hoopla and media coverage, the South Korea based company has certainly learned a thing or two about creating a media buzz prior to a product launch. Previously, that was a talent that only Apple seemed to have mastered.

What’s more, Samsung has also proven rather shrewd at another one of Apple’s historic specialties – advertising. Not only are its latest people-centric ads resonating with consumers, they also bash Apple fans and iPhone users in the process. That’s a lot of bang for the buck.

And speaking of bucks, Samsung isn’t shy about spending a lot of its money on advertising efforts. While Apple outspent Samsung by a factor of 3-1 in mobile advertising in 2011, Samsung stepped up its game in a major way in 2012. Last year, Samsung outspent Apple by $64 million in mobile advertising. Specifically, Apple spent $333 million on its advertising efforts while Samsung spent $401 million. What’s more, while Samsung’s commercials were hip, cutting and funny, Apple’s efforts were rather mediocre and included a few spots that were received poorly by Apple enthusiasts and consumers.

The willingness to spend heavily could prove even more important as the technology gap between rivals narrows.

“They understand how to build a strong product…and have been willing to invest to drive their success,” said Michael Sievert, chief marketing officer of T-Mobile USA Inc., a unit of Deutsche Telekom.

Samsung’s aggressive approach has carried over into this year, with Super Bowl ads and a big presence at the Mobile World Congress wireless industry conference in Barcelona., where Samsung built a large booth with a coffee bar and private office suites for meetings.

And the advertising dollars certainly helped. Samsung’s 2012 was a banner year for the company’s smartphone division as they ended the year with a 30.3% share of the smartphone market. By way of contrast, Samsung in 2011 only had a 19% share of the smartphone market.

Furthermore, Samsung has been rather adept at creating a strong brand for the “Galaxy” name. Last year, for example, they insisted that all four US carriers call the Galaxy S III the same name, a departure from the typical modus operandi where the same model may have different names across multiple carriers.

As an example of Samsung’s theme with respect to its Galaxy advertisements, check one of their first efforts which took express shots at Apple’s fan base.

And here is one of Apple’s Genius ads from 2012 that didn’t quite strike a chord with anyone.

via WSJ 


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