Samsung’s Brand Story
Description of Samsung Brand
Samsung is a South Korean global conglomerate with headquarters in Samsung Town, Seoul. It operates multiple affiliated businesses, most notably Samsung Electronics, Samsung Heavy Industries, Samsung Engineering and Samsung C&T. Other subsidiaries include Samsung Life Insurance, Samsung Everland and Cheil Worldwide.
With headquarters in Suwon, South Korea, Samsung Electronics is the flagship company of the brand and accounts for the largest portion of Samsung’s revenue. It has sales networks and assembly plants in 80 countries, where it has employed 320,671 people. Samsung Electronics is the largest consumer electronics and semiconductors manufacturer worldwide in terms of revenue.
Samsung aims to use transformative ideas to change the world and empower people to discover new experiences. The brand is constantly redefining various technologies, such as smartphones, TVs, tablets, wearable devices, network systems and digital appliances as well as foundry, system LSI and memory solutions.
History of Samsung
Lee Byung-chull started Samsung with about $27 in 1938 as a trading company in Korea. With only 40 employees, the small company started as a grocery store for trading and exporting goods made in and around the town of Taegu.
In 1947, Samsung expanded to Seoul but relocated following the breakout of the Korean War. After the war, Lee started Cheil Jedang, a sugar refinery in Busan and later expanded into textiles, building a woolen mill that was the largest in Korea at the time. During this time, Samsung used successful diversification as its growth strategy. The company quickly expanded into retail, securities and insurance. It focused on using industrialization to rebuild Korea following the war.
In 1960, Samsung entered the electronics industry with the formation of numerous divisions focused on electronics. In 1970, Samsung built its first facilities in Suwon, South Korea, where it began producing black and white TVs.
Samsung started selling washing machines between 1972 and 1979. It changed its name to Samsung Petrochemical, which was then changed to Samsung Heavy Industries. In 1980, Samsung ventured into the telecommunications hardware industry and started building telephone switchboards and telephone and fax systems, which later evolved into the mobile phone industry. Samsung grouped the mobile phone business into Samsung Electronics.
Following the death of Lee Byung-chull in 1987, Samsung Group split into four factions. Samsung Group retained electronics, construction, engineering and a variety of high-tech products.
Samsung’s global brand grew throughout the 1990s. In 1993, it focused on electronics, engineering, and chemicals. Its expansion in the mobile phone technology continued, and it became the largest mobile phone manufacturer by 2012. In 2014, it announced the Gear VR and, in 2016, it released Gear Fit 2, its fitness smartwatch, and wireless earbuds known as Gear Icon X.
Samsung’s series of Galaxy S phones have been among the most popular phones worldwide to date, competing with other top phone makers including Apple, Huawei and Xiaomi.
Samsung’s Global Rank
According to Interbrand’s Best Global Brands 2018 list, Samsung’s rank was 6th with a brand value of $59.9 billion.
The Popularity of Samsung Products
Samsung’s most popular products are its smartphones. The brand seems to have a strong understanding of its customers’ wants and needs. Over the last decade, the company’s marketing has gone from overly technical and monotonous to fun and engaging. Even as it pushes the boundaries of technology, Samsung still focuses on appealing to a vast market.
Samsung’s Biggest Competitors
Samsung’s top three competitors are Apple, Huawei and Xiaomi. Apple is a California-based global technology brand that makes and sells consumer electronics, software and online services. It’s 2018 revenue was $265.6 billion, the majority of which came from the company’s most popular product: iPhone. Apple entered the market in 1976.
Founded in 1987, Guangdong-based global technology company Huawei also sells smartphones and other consumer electronics. The company’s 2018 revenue was $107.13 billion. Samsung’s other competitor, Xiaomi, is a Beijing-based electronics company that develops smartphones, laptops, mobile apps and other products. It was founded in 2010 and had $26 billion in revenue in 2018.
How Samsung Keeps Itself Visible
Samsung relies on a diverse set of promotional strategies for maintaining brand visibility. The strategies include sponsorship, partnerships and advertising. Sponsorships by Samsung include the NSWIS Awards, Australian Olympic Team and Sydney Opera House. While the brand doesn’t focus on commercials as much as other top global brands do, it promotes its most important products, such as Galaxy smartphones.
Latest Samsung News
Currently, the biggest stories concerning Samsung are regarding the Galaxy Fold released in April 2019 and the Galaxy Note 10, to be announced on August 2019.
The company is developing a 2nd generation smartphone that it hopes will correct the failures of the Galaxy Fold. In contrast, the new model boast a 7.3-inch foldable display with a 4.6-inch screen on the phone’s cover.
The advantages of this new folding phone design include its size, which matches the typical large flagship smartphone but is as portable as a feature phone when folded. It would also be durable because the design protects the screen when the phone is closed. As a result, a phone case will likely be unnecessary.
Consumers are also excited about the Samsung Galaxy Note 10, judging by the response to rumors and leaks of the device. Enthusiasts remain cautiously optimistic because even though the Samsung Galaxy S9 had many awesome features, it was still only a slight upgrade from the Samsung Galaxy Note 8, which came out in 2018.
The leaked images of the Note 10 show one punch-hole camera at the top center of the front, no visible speaker (a sign that the screen might be sound-conducting) and a vertically aligned three-camera setup at the back. The leaked photos also reveal a metal frame and no headphone jack or Bixby button. Rumors say the phone will have a 12GB RAM and either an Exynos 9820 or Snapdragon 855 chipset, depending on the region.
Despite the embarrassing global blunder created by the shortcomings of the initial Galaxy Fold, Samsung remains a powerhouse in the mobile and consumer electronics marketplace. With over $221 billion in 2018 revenue, the Samsung Group is firmly entrenched in upper echelon of the Global Fortune 500.