In a recent interview that Adweek did with Younghee Lee, Samsung's executive VP of global marketing for its IT and Mobile divisions, the renowned marketer who used to handle global campaigns of cosmetics giants such as L'Oréal and Lancôme revealed how she turned the consumer perspective of Samsung from "boring and monotonous" to exciting and innovative.
As Lee explained, she joined Samsung, "a true tech company" without an engineering background and consequently originally had trouble with understanding the company's products. However, she also believed that the consumers had the same problem so she decided to find a way not only to gain a better understanding of what the company was doing but also to explain Samsung's products to consumers "in meaningful ways". A decade later, Lee believes she has managed to achieve just that. As she explains, consumers in 2016 associate Samsung with attributes such as "innovative", "dynamic", and "fast-paced". Since she took over the marketing reigns in 2007, the Samsung executive attempted to present the South Korean consumer electronics manufacturer as "a true innovation company with a bold attitude." As she puts it, Samsung stopped creating products which were meant to be used as simple tools and is now designing and manufacturing high-tech "gateways to new experiences". For example, their smartphones aren't just phones but can also be paired with devices such as TVs, watches, and refrigerators in order to improve the user experience of all of those devices. At least, that's how Lee sees it and how Samsung engineers and designers are now approaching the process of creating new products. Samsung's VP of global marketing also revealed how proud she is of the fact that consumers have stopped viewing Samsung as a Korean company and are today seeing it as a truly multinational brand.
Lee also touched upon Samsung's aggressive marketing campaign for the Galaxy S devices which directly mocked Apple and its iPhones. She explained that Samsung took Apple head on not for the purposes of entertainment but because the company itself is convinced it has superior products and consequently isn't afraid to be "bold" in its marketing endeavors. As for the future, Lee revealed that Samsung wants to put a bigger focus on appealing to millennials in order to keep the Galaxy brand in a "young and fresh mindset." The company also has big plans for wearable technology revolving around the idea of "evolving" Samsung wearables which change in accordance to the needs of their users.
Lee admits that all of the aforementioned endeavors require a constant influx of fresh minds with new ideas and perspectives but she believes Samsung has no problems with attracting the best young talent in the world due to the fact that it's a unique company which is both an established market leader and "very young in spirit." Nonetheless, she specifically pointed out that Samsung doesn't take its position for granted and will keep improving not only on the premium end where it competes with Apple but also in other markets where lower-end manufacturers like Huawei and Xiaomi have started making some waves in recent years. How will it do that? Same way it did so far – by "providing better value" to consumers, Lee revealed.