How Samsung harnessed their fans to launch the Galaxy S4

While finding relevant and innovative ways to launch a new product can be exciting, it can also be daunting for advertisers at times.  In a time when fans are willing to camp in front of stores for shoes, video games, and phones, the ability to alert fans is key; but what does a company do for those individuals who want to be “first” to receive a new product but do not have the time to dedicate towards battling the elements for days to get it? 

 Social media is one of the best ways to reach those within the millennial generation due to its “instant gratification” format, but can app updates be harnessed to not just inform potential customers about a launch but rather be the launch itself?  How would an advertiser change their use of social media from giving knowledge to an active part of the launch process? 

 Samsung’s recent campaigns for its iPhone rival, the Galaxy S4, have been making fun of the infamous apple store line as an archaic way to launch a product to your consumer.   Until recently, the ads have not shown how their launching of the Galaxy S4 has truly been better - enter the “smart phone line.” 

 Colenso BBDO introduced a new way to have the consumer launch the Galaxy S4 by having a digital line directly connected to users’ Facebook and Twitter accounts that moved their unique avatars closer to the front of the line every time they tweeted, retweeted, or posted about the Galaxy S4.  A digital waiting line may have seemed a little too abstract, so BBDO decided to create a physical place for the digital line to be observed.  

 Here are a few statistics from the BBDO’s case study about the launch: 12,000 people queued for two weeks, where they shared 85,000 stories to over 3 million people. This created an organic reach of over 15 million people. After the launch, the market share for the Galaxy S4 grew 12%.

 Adweek featured BBDO’s case study which they posted on YouTube.  You may watch it here: