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Samsung exec says mocking Apple ‘fanboys’ has worked wonders

Published Aug 13th, 2013 1:15PM EDT
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It’s official: Making fun of ‘iSheep’ has been both fun and profitable for Samsung. In an interview with AdNews, Samsung Australia’s chief marketing officer Arno Lenior said that the 2011 Samsung ad that ridiculed Apple fans for unquestionably loving everything about the iPhone helped propel the company’s brand to a whole new level.

“That really did mark quite a tipping point for us globally,” he explained. “We were able to tell a cheeky story — if you think about it, we’re a Korean company starting to really mess with the order of things… You’ve got fanboys after fanboys going, ‘You can’t put that out there,’ and then the Samsung fans saying, ‘Yes, you can’, and they’re starting to have that conversation, which is brilliant. So that piece of content has been amazing for us, both globally and here in Australia.”

The trouble for Samsung, however, is that its own success will make it a bigger target for the same sorts of ads that the company deployed so effectively against Apple. Even so, Lenior tells AdNews that the company still thinks of itself as an underdog that has something to prove in the mobile market.

“I don’t think the public sees us as a market leader just yet, and I quite like that,” he said. “I like being thought of as a challenger brand — I think even though we will be in most segments a market leader, we will always be acting like a challenger. And that comes back to that perpetual state-of-crisis mindset.”

Brad Reed
Brad Reed Staff Writer

Brad Reed has written about technology for over eight years at and Network World. Prior to that, he wrote freelance stories for political publications such as AlterNet and the American Prospect. He has a Master's Degree in Business and Economics Journalism from Boston University.


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