Samsung has been making waves this year with their new flagship phone, the Galaxy S4, and now they may see the fruits of their labor. At first many simply saw the device as a mere upgrade from its predecessor the Galaxy S3, but it now reaches nearly 10 million sold! This is not an unprecedented feat for Samsung; in fact the GS3 reached the 10 million mark in late July last year after releasing two months earlier on May 29th, 2012. That in and of itself is an impressive accomplishment, but now Samsung is one-upping themselves. The GS4 has only been out for 21 days ago, launching on April 26th, and has already reached over six million units sold! Samsung’s co-CEO JK Shin has told the Korea Press that he expects the devices sales to reach the desired projection by the end of next week.
If this were accomplished, Samsung would have literally cut their turn around for upgrading Galaxy phones in half. So what made it possible for Samsung to break their own impressive record and reach 10 million sold in only a month? Much of it comes down to some subtle (and some not so subtle) differences in their marketing strategy. On the subtle side, the GS4 was immediately available upon release in North America from three major U.S mobile carriers, as opposed to the GS3 debuting a month after its European release last year. Availability allows products to reach such immense sales, but it is pointless without a good marketing strategy as backup.
Apple’s iPhone 5 came out September 21st of last year, and that was right about the time they began airing TV ads portraying their already successful GS3 as the “iPhone killer”. Their ads showed the massive pre-release lines that stretched for blocks stemming from the Apple store while people waited for the iPhone 5 talking about it’s new features that users were skeptical about such as the inverted headphone jack and new charging port. Then, as if their ears were burning, GS3 users would pop up and give a free display of the Samsung phone’s capabilities. Now even though this was an ad for the predecessor, Samsung’s placement of these ads simply tenderized the consumer market for the GS4 and planted the idea in their minds that Samsung is the new kid on the block, here to knock the iPhone down a peg. And it seems that playing off Apple’s marketing and user community in hindsight has worked brilliantly considering Samsung’s Galaxy S4 should be in 10 million pockets by the end of next week and stands poised as the iPhone 5’s biggest competitor.