The Flaw in Samsung’s Anti-iPhone Commercial

on November 23, 2011


I have to admit, the new Samsung commercial is one of the better commercials from a marketing standpoint for Android devices and Samsung in particular. If you haven’t seen it I suggest checking it out here.

What has been the criticism of many commercials pitching cell phones, Droid’s in particular, is how they don’t market any real value to the end consumer. Showing a gal fighting a robot, or a person hijacking a truck to steal a phone, doesn’t necessarily showcase to the end consumer why they should choose this product over another.

This latest Samsung commercial is highly entertaining and a welcomed departure from the usual commercials from iPhone competitors. That being said, although well intended, I think it misses the broader opportunity and is therefore fundamentally flawed.

As I processed this new Galaxy SII commercial, the flaw in their messaging hit me when a would be iPhone buyer in line at an Apple store said this:

“How will people know I upgraded, since the new one looks the same?”

Despite a range of other odd moments in the commercial, this one struck me because it leaves me thinking that Samsung is interested in iPhone converts, or at the very least early adopters. Granted, I am going to analyze this commercial more than most but it is still a valid observation.

What is flawed with this commercial is that it makes no sense to the non-techie consumer, the largest part of the market and the one Apple’s commercials are designed to speak communicate with. Samsung shouldn’t be concerned with consumers upgrading from the iPhone 4 to the 4S.

This fact hit me while I was laughing at the commercial, because I thought it was funny, and my wife said “I don’t get it.” She didn’t get it because, although she likes the iPhone, she is not an early adopter. That Samsung commercial in no way interested her in the Galaxy SII.

Samsung would be more wise to market to consumers whom are shopping for their first smartphone. This commercial, it appears, is not designed to go after that market. This is the marketing blunder I believe Samsung has made. Apple is out marketing to new consumers, mostly first time iPhone shoppers, and Samsung is focusing solely on existing hardcore Apple early adopters.

Apple marketing is chasing the future and Samsung marketing is stuck in the past.