THE MILLENNIAL IS A PREMIER THEME FOR SAMSUNG INDIA
Samsung is an 81-year-old brand adept at catching the pulse of millennials. Ranjivjit Singh, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer, Samsung India tells us why the latest brand campaign is expected to strike a chord with youngsters in the country
Q] What was the insight behind India, Ready, Action! campaign? Samsung has been in the country for over 23 years and we really have a good understanding of the millennials. We listen to them and they are our core target audience. India, in fact has the largest population of millennials in the world and 80% of the usage of internet is by millennials and thus they are a very important audience for us as a technology company. Our studies told us that that there is a whole increase in the usage of video with smart phones coming in. The second insight was that millennials don’t like to just sit on the sidelines. They jump into the conversations, express themselves and challenge the status quo. We put these things together to come up with the India Ready Action campaign.
Q] You have asked your customers to create videos in this campaign, what kind of response are you expecting? This campaign is essentially about millennials wanting to break the stereotypes that foreigners have about India. Whenever you talk to a foreigner, we often hear, I saw the Taj Mahal and Varanasi, now I have seen India. No there is much more to India than that. Similarly there is a blanket statement like Indian food is so spicy, I want to eat butter chicken, it’s almost like that’s the only food in India. Through this campaign we are asking the millennials to shoot the real India and allow the world to see it through their eyes by sharing the videos on Instagram, with the hashtag #IndiaReadyAction with sub categories like culture, entertainment, places and food. If someone uploads a video on culture from Calcutta, we will use it to create an interactive map of India and use this videos as the pin in Kolkata. Now that becomes a reference point for anyone from outside who wants to know more about India.
Q] Did you time it around the elections so that India as a larger theme will strike a chord with the millennials more? Not really. I mean, millennials is a perennial theme for us. The energy and the passion for India continues to trend and smart phones have become ubiquitous thanks to the data that’s going into smaller towns, villages, everywhere. So, it’s a much broader theme would say. It’s about really showcasing to the world what the real India is about.
Q] What is the marketing mix for the campaign? The idea was to make it really friction less i.e. facilitate seeing the campaign and acting on it right there. So, we wanted to stick to Digital and the smart phone because that’s where you take the video, ‘hashtag’ it, post it to Instagram, and that’s where you pull it from there into the map of India. So, this campaign has a very digital focus. Also, they don’t have to use a Samsung smart phone to create videos, they can use any smart phone to produce that video. And not just millennials, anyone can produce the video. For the first four weeks, every week we will be giving away Samsung A70-- 6.7 inch, 4500 mAh battery, 25W fast charging, ultra wide, has hyperlapse feature etc. And in the last leg we will be giving away 20 prizes, out of those 10 are going to be Smart TVs, 43 inches.
Q] What is your budget for the India, Ready, Action! campaign? This is not the kind of campaign on which I want to say we are spending a lot of money. I am hoping it is more of a viral campaign. Millions of people are going to be viewing the film and many more will create videos for the others to see.
Q] Most of Samsung’s campaigns over the past 2-3 years have been adept at making the viewer tear up, this time you are using pride as the core of your campaign. Is that a theme that Samsung will continue to use in the next few years? We have brought out many campaigns to highlight our CSR work like the Samsung ‘smart class’, the ‘technical school’, etc. They were emotional because we wanted to put the spotlight on the lesser privileged ones and how they benefit from technology. So the story was about empowerment and therefore we used a lot of emotions. This one however is about showing your energy, vibrancy, passion for the country and wanting to stand up for the real India. So, this time we focused on creating a connection with the millennials and not just the emotions.
Q] With the launch of Galaxy S10 series, Samsung has reclaimed the leadership position in the premium smartphone market in India (as per market research firm Counterpoint). This is after losing out to One Plus for three quarters in a row. We have always been number 1. We are more focused on the GFK reports. They are syndicated and more on off take and closer to the consumer. And we have always been number one on that. But irrespective of that, the point is, that yes we have really strengthened our position. We have over 77% market share in above 30,000 rupees segment. S10 has got so many ‘world’s firsts’ and so many great features that a smart phone can have. It’s something that consumers have taken to in a very nice way. Like the camera tells us at which angle you will get the best shot. You almost become a professional in taking photographs or making videos. It has got the ultra-wides, HDR 10 plus capabilities, long lasting battery and wireless power-share feature.
Q] How much does India contribute to the overall global revenue figures of Samsung? All I can say is that India is one of the very important countries for us. It is one of the fastest growing markets and it is on its way to becoming one of the largest markets. Plus we are market leaders here, so it is very important.
Q] Apart from mobiles what are the other unique products that you are launching, across categories? We have the Samsung smart TV. India as a market doesn’t have a strong PC penetration. In fact people say that India has become a ‘mobile first’ and probably ‘mobile only’ market. However, people still want to do their office work, and the kids still want to do their homework for projects and stuff, so we built in the computer into the television. So, if you connect a keypad into the smart TV, you can use it as a computer. Then there is the ‘Live Cast’ option and also the ‘cloud.’ These are the kind of things that will make it really interesting. Then there is the refrigerator. India has probably the highest population in the world of vegetarians. And still we have freezers because in families also there are now mixed preferences of what you eat, what you don’t eat. Yet there are times when you want more storage space and want to convert the freezer into a normal refrigerator. So, we have a convertible refrigerator, wherein there are different modes where you can literally switch off the freezer or you can run it as a regular refrigerator. Then through our microwaves you can now make tandoori rotis in the microwave at home. It also enables you to have a very healthy diet through the slim fry option, just a sprinkling of oil and you can cook all your favorite dishes. There are many other innovations that will allow you to make masalas in your microwave oven instead of drying it on your terrace. It’s called the ‘Masala Dry Microwave Oven.’ We spend a lot of time and energy understanding how we can make our consumers’ lives better.