Staff Reporters
Aug 28, 2014

Samsung's sideways appeal to 'Alpha' consumers

Samsung employed a Hollywood director for an online film that aims to promote the high-end design of its Galaxy Alpha phone. But does the film convey its intended message?

Client: Samsung

Agency: Cheil Worldwide

Market: Global

Campaign scope: Online video

Facts: For a director, the agency hired Nicolas Winding Refn, an award-winning filmmaker best known for two feature films starring Ryan Gosling, Drive (2011) and Only God Forgives (2013). The company says the 50-second video "focuses on Alpha people, who represent trendy and confident young professionals who take pride in what they choose to do in life, and know how to do it best". More than 4 million people have watched the video in about two weeks.

Press release quote: "We wanted to create something new, something that isn’t ‘Samsung’ as you know it," said Wain Choi, Global ECD at Cheil Worldwide. "For this, we wanted to turn our video into a graphical piece of art that every Alpha person would relate to."

Comments: From the ad, we deduced that the primary attraction of the phone is its ability to stand on its side. This is apparently a very important factor for young Europeans who have a lot of money but tragically lack the space to permit a phone to lay in the normal way amongst their expensive DJ equipment or ugly costume jewellry or what have you. Clearly we are not the 'Alpha' people Samsung is looking for. [Update, 5:30 pm: A Cheil spokesperson reports that the sideways standing was an effort to emphasise the phone's slim shape, which it does quite effectively.]

As is often the case with Samsung's advertising, the ad also manages to raise a number of questions unrelated to the product: Who is that DJ DJing for? To be a successful graphic designer, does one merely need to be adept at tracing metallic crescents? Why is fashion lady so mad at that model?

Previously: For all its market success, Samsung has a history of odd and unintentionally funny ads


Agency: Cheil WorldWide
Executive Creative Director: Wain Choi
Creative Director: Kevin Pereira
Art Director: Jax Jung
Copywriter: Adrian Sim
Agency Producer: Sunmin Kim
Account Managers: Eui Sun Chung, Terry Ko, DK Kim, Hyun Woo Kang
Project Manager: Chris Kim
Production Company : Stink Ltd.
Producer: Juliet Naylor
Director: Nicolas Winding Refn
Editor: Circus (UK) / Gust and Gale (Korea)
Music: Composer: Michael Fakesch
Recording Studio: Factory Studios (UK) / Gust and Gale (Korea)



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