It’s no secret that Samsung’s got some deep pockets when it comes to promoting its smartphones, and the billions of dollars it spends every year are likely a big part of the reason it finds the market share that it does. However, there’s been a lot of talk recently suggesting that while Samsung’s sales are still outpacing everyone else, the company hasn’t been too satisfied with recent performance, and could take drastic steps – like moving up the Galaxy S 5 launch – in order to stimulate sales. Today we look at another change Samsung’s been up to, as the nature of its promotional spending shifts from ads to incentives.
In its native South Korea, Samsung’s ad spending is down more than half compared to last year, while promotions – things like rebates and coupons offered to retailers and shoppers themselves – have seen the company spending nearly 40% more than last year. That trend continues internationally, where expenses related to promotional incentives have doubled from 2012.
It would be easy to paint this as desperation: that attracting shoppers with price tags rather than features isn’t a great way to sell “premium” devices, but we’ll have to see the end-of-year sales figures to know for sure what to think; at the end of the day, it would be difficult to argue with success.