Samsung was preparing to launch its newest phone, the Galaxy S5, with unique features that included a waterproof skin, a heartbeat sensor, a fingerprint scanner, and an HDR dynamic camera. To generate awareness in the Turkish market, it partnered with the popular crime series Kara Para Aşk and created a media-first product integration in the series and online through a branded mobile app that engaged audiences with a second screen during the shows.
Objective and Context:
Samsung’s objective was to build an aspirational brand image by communicating the unique and differentiating features of the Galaxy S5, focusing on its unique, high-quality, and easy display attributes. Samsung needed to improve local communication about its smart functions and user experience to overcome barriers to preference.
In May, Samsung launched its latest smartphone, the Galaxy S5, by promoting its differentiating features, including the heartbeat sensor, fingerprint scanner, an HDR dynamic camera, and waterproof skin.
Print, outdoor, and TV advertisements were used to increase awareness of the new product. But beyond awareness, the local communication objective was to amplify conversation around Samsung products and increase brand advocates by creating engagement.
Samsung’s target audience are people from age 15 to 45 who follow the latest technology trends. Their lifestyles are driven by heavy consumption of TV and digital media, and they are especially engaged in local TV series, as well as celebrities and their aspirational lifestyles. This loyal group even takes to social media and hashtags to help move up the social ratings of their favorite shows. According to Nielsen research, this group prefers online channels for connecting with friends and often utilizes multiple screens when watching their programs.
Crime series drive high curiosity online as viewers try to figure out “Who did it?” As viewers look for more clues, the need for second-screen content grows. To drive consumer conversations, the crime-investigation genre was a “can’t miss” opportunity to link with the Galaxy S5 and its unique features.
Samsung created a content strategy that was shaped by consumer passion using Kara Para Aşk, a popular crime drama that was already in the middle of a powerful social conversation because it was announced that the murderer would be revealed in the season finale. A cross-media communications platform was created to connect traditional and online media.
The campaign budget included the product integrations (with a technology partnership with Kara Para Aşk), the mobile app production, TV copies, banner and digital ads, and PR.
Since the target audience was already connected to tech trends, Samsung allocated half of the digital budget for mobile due to their lifestyles and heavy consumption of TV and online media.
Overall Campaign Execution:
This was the first year of the campaign, which produced a media first in Turkey. Demographics revealed that 130,000 people owned a smartphone, connected to the Internet at home via mobile, and downloaded a social media app. Samsung looked at their intersection with the Kara Para Aşk audience and predicted that 35,000 people would download the app within three weeks. By the end of four weeks, more than 53,000 people had actually downloaded the app.
The Galaxy S5 was linked to the show through second-screen content and amplified cross-media to engage audiences and generate word-of-mouth awareness. While no spoilers were given, clues that led to the murderer were revealed. The tagline #KatilSeninElinde (“The murderer is in your hands”) referred to Galaxy S5’s Turkish slogan “Hayat Senin Elinde” (“The life is in your hands”). The campaign kicked off through product placements within the series, which featured the phone’s benefits. Parallel to these placements, the mobile app launched in time for the last three episodes using a special sound watermarking technology that utilized automatic content recognition. The app gave real-time clues about the mysteries within the story.
Users were instantly hooked, hoping to find the killer. The app showed content about the phone’s features synchronously with the TV scenes, providing dual-watching opportunities for viewers. The app also contained trivia and facts about the series that furthered engagement.
The app was announced by the Kara Para Aşk writers and the director in different newspaper interviews. TV banner ads and hashtag ads were used within the series to encourage social media engagement, the first time this had been done in Turkey. All ads mentioned that the audience would be getting closer to discovering the killer with the help of the app.
The app integrated SyncNow audio watermarking-based Automatic Content Recognition technology that enabled users to interact with the TV series while aired live.
While the audience watched the show, exclusive supplemental content, questions, and polls appeared on the mobile device’s screen. When users answered questions, they unlocked a secret mobile episode, filmed by Kara Para Aşk with a Samsung Galaxy S5, and it could only be watched through the mobile app. Simultaneously with the scene, the sound watermarks triggered content about product features (i.e., crime scenes triggered the fingerprint scanner; action or romance scenes triggered the heartbeat sensor; walking, running, or sports scenes triggered S-health).
Online, banners were placed in Google Play and the iTunes Store, and text ads were shown to mobile searchers to direct them to the phone’s microsite.
The media-first technology partnership delivered cross-channel, second-screen experiences for avid TV viewers. The campaign created valuable social conversations with the target audience, which rated a positive social response to the Galaxy S5. The brand performed well both in terms of unit cost and the rate of download return via targeting and optimization tools.
The brand achieved more than 53,000 app downloads in just four weeks, with a 76 percent engagement rate. The app was ranked No. 8 in the app store within two weeks and promoted to the best new app on iTunes with a 4.5 and 5.0 rating from more than 1,000 viewers.
Kara Para Aşk became one of the most mentioned TV shows in social media, and 12 percent of the show’s mentions included Samsung and its mobile app. Social sharing increased brand awareness, and users appreciated that Samsung provided an exciting second-screen experience.