Unsung elements of Galaxy S7’s Success Story
There is no doubt Galaxy S series outsold every other Android smartphone line by a huge margin. For the last few years, Samsung has been delivering stunning results riding on S series success. However, the story changed in 2014 with Galaxy S5’s underwhelming performance. Samsung had to rethink on its strategy and that resulted into metal glass cladded Galaxy S6 brothers last year. But, even that radical change failed to turn Korean giant’s fortune!
Welcome to 2016. Samsung’s stock is up! Profits are up! Market Share is up too! Much of this success is largely due to Galaxy S7/ S7 Edge’s stellar performance. Well, some say it’s due to Samsung’s decision to bring back fan favourite features like micro-SD card slot, water-resistance and bigger battery. True that! But the story doesn’t end here. Let’s talk about other factors that indirectly made S7 smartphone of the year.
Last year Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge were launched in mid-March and made available to buy only in April (10th April in India). This gave their rivals like LG and HTC enough time to come up with capable contenders and helped them to share the same shelves in stores from day 1. It also allowed consumers more options to choose from. But, this time the story was different with Galaxy S7/S7 Edge launch.
The Galaxy S7/ S7 Edge were announced on February 21 and readily available in stores starting from March 11. Whereas HTC was still figuring out how to make HTC 10 aesthetically different from its predecessor and only got an underwhelming launch in mid-April. Even LG G5 who shared the same launch day with Galaxy S7, couldn’t reach the stores until 1st April.
So, from 11th March to 31st March, Samsung enjoyed the exclusivity of being the first major manufacturer to offer it’s 2016 flagship worldwide. And this is where they took the huge lead in terms of sales numbers. But how? Carriers and promotions.
Just after the Galaxy S7 announcement, Samsung offered the free Gear VR as a pre-order gift. Carriers too jumped on board with their own promotions. For example, T-Mobile offered free Gear VR, 1 year of Netflix, wireless fast charger, $30 Best Buy gift card and 32 GB micro-SD card with every purchase of Galaxy S7 or S7 Edge. This mouth-watering freebies were too good to ignore.
It comes to me as no surprise when Counterpoint Research declared that Galaxy S7/S7 Edge sales were 20% higher and at some places 50% higher than last year’s Galaxy S6/S6 Edge. The report also cited the tech giant was able to move 10 million units in the first month of availability.
Samsung has a habit of screwing early adopters with much higher launch price and when the hype is over, they tend to offer heavy discount on their flagships. Last year, Galaxy S6 came at a price tag of ₹50,000 in India but, just after 2 months it was available for ₹40,000 with free wireless charger.
This time Samsung was careful not to repeat the same mistake. First, they launched the Galaxy S7 at a cheaper price (compared to its predecessor) and surprisingly even after the three months of availability, both S7 and S7 Edge prices have held up in offline as well as online stores.
This is a good gesture by the South Korean company towards its loyal consumer base. We welcome this change.
It is said that “You can’t sell anything if you can’t tell anything”. We all are familiar with the marketing muscles of Samsung, spending crazy amounts of money to promote their latest flagships. New Galaxies were no exception here. The 7th generation S series was all over the world, be it on web or any other social media like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube etc. Hell, even in latest Oscars, S7 Edge got an excellent ShowTime in this celebrity packed advertising promo. With all marketing promos and big advertising banners, S7 and its brother got a grand launch on 11th March and further pushed in more countries by 18th March including India. But, wait! What about others! They were nowhere to be found. At one point, it almost felt that only S7 was launched at MWC!
Just look at the banner above. Samsung covered the whole building in Moscow with LED signage. 80 meters high and 40 meters wide. Pretty sure this is one advertisement passers-by are not going to miss. Crazy! Pure madness! This is Samsung.
“Great Execution is the Ultimate Differentiator”
In today’s Android world, it’s just not about building a good looking smartphone with class leading specs. These factors are also going to be major chapter in product’s success story. Samsung seems to have nailed it with its 2016 flagship lineup.
Combine this four factors with S7’s brand appeal and one can see why the tech giant achieved 25 million sales mark at the end of June. Well, that’s quite an accomplishment for any Android OEM.
So which one has, according to you, played the primary role in writing the S7/S7 Edge success story? Sound off in comments section.