Samsung spending big on ads, but returns aren’t quite as expected


Samsung Galaxy Gear Candy Crush

Say what you will about their smartphones, tablets, and smartwatches, but one thing is for sure: Samsung doesn’t skimp when it comes to marketing. Already on record as one of the biggest spenders on advertising, a recent report from Reuters delves deeper into Samsung’s strategy. Has Paying big paid off?

The short answer is yes, but with a caveat. The $4.3 billion spent on ads and marketing in 2012 is expected to balloon to $14 billion by the end of this year. If anything, it has helped to raise brand awareness around devices like the Samsung Galaxy S4, but huge advertising push hasn’t exactly established the brand Samsung is going for. Samsung wasn’t coy about wanting to create a more Apple-like aura through marketing. In pushing that message, however, the Korean company seems to have lost sight of the bigger picture.

The solution? Spend more, according to brand consultant Moon Ji-hun. With the number of new products introduced in the past year alone, a strong, cohesive advertising push might be the only way to tie it together for consumers.

Most recently Samsung has taken heat for the relatively unsuccessful Galaxy Gear smartwatch. The device has been pushed in advertising more heavily in recent weeks than its counterpart smartphones, but has sold far fewer of the watches than it has Galaxy Note 3 handsets.  Moon believes Samsung was smart enough to know their watch would not be a mainstream hit and sees the added marketing as a calculated maneuver to establish the brand as a future-thinking force of innovation.

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  1. What should have been done was to pair the Note 3 and the Gear together instead of separate and have connectivity with all devices and full notifications out of the box. The device was rushed and we should see a more capable device with the Gear 2.

  2. Samsung has a crappy return on their marketing dollars because their advertisements look like they are cheap and made by a child, whereas some of their competitorsmake elegant and sophisticated commercials.

    1. honestly I agree with you and im not sure why someone disliked your comment. Android is great but advertising to me seems cheap across the board. Apple has some of the best commercials out there and just like @Alec smith said, they are elegant and sophisticated. im no fanboy of any platform. I like them all respectively.

    2. Well Samsung recorded $9 billion profit last quarter alone after several quarters of billions in profit. Their brand awareness 4 years ago is nowhere close to where it is today due in large part to pr. So I think their return on investment including future awareness to be pretty good. elegant and perceived sophisticated commercials get trade awards but don’t necessarily sell products. There have been lots of beautiful commercials of products that never took off. The point of a commercial is to market first. I seriously doubt if Samsung care about winning an award for a great commercial.

    3. Apple’s commercials aren’t “elegant and sophisticated” — they’re dumbed down, content-free, and deceptive, which appeals to people who don’t know anything.

      I’m not saying they’re bad. In fact, they’re superior to Samsung’s. But they’re “elegant and sophisticated” only to the WalMart crowd.

  3. Yeah I love apples innovation. Their commercial is only about answering the phone. Forget technology because they don’t have any.

  4. A lot of Samsung’s success was because of the hobbyist community. Locking the bootloaders left many disenchanted. I know myself and quite a few others that would normally bought an S4 off contract or used one of their upgrades if it wasn’t for the locked bootloaders.

    This is Motorola and HTC all over again….

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    2. We are the 1%. We do not define their success.

      1. See that’s the way they looked at too (Motorola), and although our numbers themselves don’t make a huge buying block, we do play a critical part to sales numbers when we are the ones many go to for advice on what to buy.

        1. I don’t buy that. First of all, the 1% would not be advising the other 99%. I don’t make recommendations to other people based on my needs.

          1. Well it’s not about the other 99% its about having enough of an impact to be felt. I know for my company alone the G2 has been banned once I informed our security department of the inability to kill off carrier IQ that a few hundred in lost potential sales. The S4 was bypassed by most as well when myself and others chimed in that we would not recommended it… with over 1000 company cell phones that were ready for upgrades that’s a pretty decent number of sales that didn’t have a chance out of the gate.

  5. Gear2 will be so much better but for sure Googles smart watch will beat even that.

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