We always keep our consumers at the forefront: Ranjivjit Singh, Samsung India

Singh, CMO & Senior Vice President, Samsung India, talks about their ‘India, Ready, Action!’ campaign, their partnership with Mumbai Indians and plans to take on the intense competition

e4m by Anjali Thakur
Published: May 16, 2019 8:16 AM  | 6 min read
Ranjivijit Singh Samsung India

Recently, Samsung launched a new campaign called ‘India, Ready, Action!’, which encourages millennials to shoot a 60-second video capturing what India means to them. The campaign has started on a high note as the video has already been viewed 50 million times on YouTube.

In a candid conversation with exchange4media, Ranjivjit Singh, Chief Marketing Officer and Senior Vice President of Samsung India, talks about their latest campaign, their partnership with Mumbai Indians during IPL, and how do they plan to a standout amongst the intense competition.

Please tell us about your recent campaign 'India, Ready, Action'? 

Samsung has a very strong connect with the Indian millennial typically 18-34 years. We understand them, we listen to them, try to uncover what is going on in their minds. A very interesting insight that we have gotten is the growing consumption of video, which has shot up by 50 per cent. We are looking at a big shift that’s taking place — from the era of selfies to the era of life, which is about living in the moment, recording it and uploading it in the form of videos. Several video platforms have come up to target this group. Also, millennials are socially very conscious; they jump into conversations and express themselves more than ever before.

We want to empower millennial to go out and shoot a video which can be up to 60 seconds, which can show the world what real India is. People living outside of India have a very typical, stereotypical impression of us. What India can be and what it is. To them, the Taj Mahal or the river Ganga are the only major tourist attractions in the country, food means spice and curries and entertainment is only Bollywood and Cricket. There is little awareness of the other possibilities in Real India.

We brought all the insights together and prepared the ‘India, Ready, Action!’ campaign. It’s an invitation to millennials to showcase the real India as seen through their eyes. What we are asking them to do is shoot a video that’s up to 60 seconds long and share the same on Instagram with #IndiaReadyAction, followed by the hashtag that captures the essence of the video, like food, culture or entertainment. The best videos will then be set on an interactive map of India, which will appear on our website. If you visit Calcutta on the map then you will see your entry and those from others in the city. The campaign is open to everyone and you don’t need to be a Samsung user. Also, let’s not forget the new Samsung smart TVs, which can be used for video chats.

While marketing to GenZ, what are the factors that you keep in mind? What are they looking for in a brand and how do you aim to deliver that?

The thing about communicating with millennial is that it’s not one way; it’s two-way communication. It’s a dialogue. It’s also giving them what they want so that they can express themselves to the larger world and our brand enables that. We listen to what they are saying and we pick up the right signals then we are able to give them the product that allows them to express themselves in the best possible way. This is at the core of Samsung’s DNA. We communicate with them in their language.

Samsung was a key sponsor for Mumbai Indians. How has the partnership impacted the brand's visibility?

How do these associations further strengthen the position of the brand in the mind of a consumer? Associating with Mumbai Indians is another way in which we demonstrate our partnership and deep rootedness in India. And the youth is following cricket a lot, it is a very interesting way for us to have the privilege to be seen there. So, it is just a way of where the consumer is.

With a lot of brands coming forward to sponsor sports event, do you think that a lot of times a brand's visibility gets compromised? Will sports sponsorship continue to be an important marketing goal for Samsung?

There is so much media availability which is always hitting the eyes of a consumer. The way we look at it is that we follow the consumer journey. For us, post-purchase is very important we put in a lot of efforts to take care of our customers. In that sense, there may be a lot of signals that the consumers may be getting from different brands, different logos but a true measure of a strong brand is consistency. It is a question of that recognition in an instant. People have a clear association from the brand; they have a certain amount of trust and loyalty from the brand. On any platform, we come out with consistency, and if a brand has consistency it will definitely stand apart.

With OTT platforms witnessing a rise and millennials moving towards them, are you looking for partnerships with shows?

OTT is a growing platform where a lot of snacking is done; a lot of content is consumed on OTT. There is no denying that it is becoming more and more popular, and if OTT is where the consumers are then you will definitely find Samsung there. But we look at it a bit more holistically; we will keep listening to and understanding, where our consumers are and what part of it is being influenced by that medium. We are always looking at where is consuming spending most of the time, but what is important is the intention of the consumer whether the consumer wants to be disturbed at that time, is consumer open to brand communication or the consumer doesn’t want it at all. If the consumer wants to consume content, then he/she may find it irritating at that point in time. If it is disturbing the consumer, then we will gracefully honour that. So, we will respect what the consumer wants, we always keep our consumers at the forefront.

India is still an underpenetrated market, how do you plan to target users beyond Tier II and Tier III cities?

India is now the second largest smartphone user in the world after China. We know that consumers want more from a smartphone. Samsung is a very inclusive brand that is in the DNA of the company. When we ranged out the Galaxy A series, we had already launched 6 products by February. Our entry-level smartphone is Galaxy A2 Core, that priced at Rs 5,290 is the kind of invitation that is the world of Galaxy. Samsung is looking at expanding the market, enabling the consumers to come in seamlessly into the world of smartphones.

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