Apple is a marketing and branding machine. Once a consumer actually uses their devices, experiences complementary products that operate seamlessly together, and realizes that Apple products, just work, Apple creates customers for life. If you are an Apple fanatic like moi, you get this.
[Alright, let’s start with the disclaimer: I am an Apple product lover. I own just about every Apple device out there, and plan on accumulating some more this month. Now, the other disclaimer: two years ago I would never have uttered these words.]
This leads me to today’s topic:
“Hey, Samsung: I’ve got a problem with your branding.”
I’m sure you’ve seen this ad:
Here’s my problem with the messaging, imagery, and generally everything about this ad.
- Poor messaging: if Samsung was the already the “next big thing,” they wouldn’t need a 1 minute 30 second ad to tell us. Oh this one fires me up. This ad is long, really long, which to me, sends a message of desperation. To me this ad says: “Please don’t leave us for Apple. If you do, we’ll make fun of you with a bad ad.” No one is out searching online for the potential launch date of the next Samsung phone, no one is standing in line for a Samsung, and no one is considering paying the full price for the next Samsung even though their contract is not up yet and they’d only have to wait 6 more months for the contracted price. In that case, no, the next big thing is not already here. Sorry, Samsung.
- Know your target customer. Does Samsung think that its target customer is the person who would wait in line for an iPhone? Let’s give them the benefit of the doubt that they are not silly enough to think that they could convert “line-waiters” by watching this ad. Samsung must be targeting people who are so anti-Apple that they would never consider buying an Apple product in the first place, or waiting in line. In that case, see point #1. Do you really need this ad for that customer group? Those anti-Apple folks will not buy an iPhone just based on principle, regardless of this ad or not.
- Know your competitor’s customers if you are going to attack them. Does Samsung truly think that Apple’s bread and butter, wait-in-line customers are “Mom and Dad??” That cracked me up. As if this is the target customer for Apple. In addition, did anyone else notice the only “hipster” looking people in the ad are Samsung customers, and that in general, all the Apple customers are older? Come on. That’s just poor vetting on Samsung’s part, and anyone who can think critically can easily rip into the actors they used in this ad.
- Show off benefits that users actually want. Two Samsung customers clank their phones together and trade a play list. Is this something that people want to do? Sure, Samsung had some features before the iPhone, like 4G and video chatting over networks vs wi-fi, but again, it’s an iPhone. It’s one of the greatest creations of all time. If you still don’t believe me, check out this great article from the Cult of Mac blog about his experience being exiled into using Android products for three months.
“You Can’t Touch This, Samsung.”
Apple sold 2 million iPhone 5 on the first day. THE FIRST DAY. While the iPhone 5 was rumored to be a Steve Jobs design and legacy device, nothing totally earth shattering came with the new design except that:
“It cemented Job’s most dramatic legacy of all—the building of the world’s most profitable and valuable company through the total dominance of the smartphone category. Powered by the iPhone 5, Apple will remain the undisputed market leader—not only in terms of sales but also, incredibly, by continuing to grab the lion’s share of the industry’s profits.”
Sorry, Samsung. Better luck, next time!
- 51.7% of Apple fans would rather lose their wallet than their iPhone (intomobile.com)
- Apple iPhone 5 Costs Only 41 Cents To Charge For An Entire Year (ibtimes.com)
- An iPhone Lover’s Three Month Exile with Android (cultofmac.com)