Brand & Media Owner Partnership
The Trust: The Wall Street Journal | Barron's Group
The human touch
Samsung’s campaign brief was devised not just as a global crisis was emerging, but also at a time when consumers, employees and investors were becoming increasingly vocal in their demands that companies operate in socially and environmentally responsible ways. Superimposed on such concerns was the new corporate vision that Samsung announced at CES in January 2020, that humanity stands on the brink of an age of human-centric innovation in which hardware and software combine seamlessly to create personalized experiences that make life more convenient, more enjoyable, and more meaningful.
The brief from Samsung was therefore to create content that intertwined Samsung’s vision with their mission to play an important role in creating a better world for all, post Covid-19 and well into the future. An important goal of this campaign was to help reverse the perception among some consumers that large technology companies, such as Samsung, are chiefly concerned with their bottom line and thus do not have the best interests of the world and its citizens at heart. Samsung genuinely has a powerful story to tell that effectively counters this assumption due to both the human-centric approach it takes to innovation and product design and the company’s many impressive CSR efforts aimed at building a more sustainable future. The challenge was to find ways to demonstrate how Samsung is harnessing innovation and creating products that enrich people’s lives through a powerful brand campaign to reach those likely to have the greatest influence on the future, including C-suite opinion leaders, millennials and Gen-Z.
Our objective of the brief was to generate trust in the Samsung brand and strengthen the perception that Samsung is a company that truly cares about human health and happiness, and that wants to use its power and know-how to foster a better and more sustainable future.
The Creative Solution
The solution we developed to achieve Samsung’s objectives was a multi-platform campaign that positioned Samsung at the helm of a global conversation about technology’s role in advancing human potential, revealing new paths to a meaningful life and a sustainable world.
At the heart of our approach was storytelling. We knew that, in order to cut through the ever-increasing volumes of information being published in response to the pandemic, the quality of our stories had to be of the highest journalistic standard. We developed all the campaign stories together under one theme – The Human Touch – which served as a lens through which our editorial and design approaches were conceptualized. To engage with Samsung’s broad target audience, we devised a program that brought to life compelling stories across a wide variety of formats, including written articles, videos, infographics, print advertorials and live custom moments at our conferences.
Engaging and shareable branded content:
We created an interactive online hub to unite all the campaign’s digital content, which included live articles, two videos and an infographic. This content was rolled out in two phases that served to highlight the different ways in which Samsung’s technology is helping to create a better world. The first phase explored how Samsung is producing technology to empower individuals – for example, through robotics that are increasing mobility for elderly or injured people – leading to happier, healthier lives. The second showcased how Samsung is building technologies that will benefit the world more broadly through its CSR efforts, with one of the examples featured illustrating how the company’s ‘Solve for Tomorrow’ program encourages students to use STEM ideas to resolve some of society’s greatest challenges.
Appealing to opinion leaders:
To connect with the hard-to-reach audience of opinion leaders we leveraged our print and live event capabilities. We converted three articles to printed newspaper advertorials and offered Samsung two speaking opportunities for their executives to share Samsung’s thought leadership and engage with peers at our WSJ events. The first event was our WSJ Tech Live conference, where Samsung conveyed how its technologies are helping people redefine how they live in their homes; the second was the WSJ CEO Council Summit, where Samsung led a breakout discussion with CEOs of some of the world’s largest companies about how mobile technology is helping companies solve Covid-19 era challenges.
The Media/Content Amplification Solution
To reach Samsung’s target audience of opinion leaders, as well as millennials and Gen-Z, in the U.S., U.K., France, Hong Kong, Singapore and Latin America, we had to draw on a wide range of formats and platforms from our global media ecosystem while ensuring that all creative elements and executions took a cohesive and integrated approach.
A phased approach to build and maintain momentum:
The media plan was structured to amplify certain principal moments over the campaign period, while ensuring that awareness was maintained throughout its duration. The first key moment was the launch of the online hub, which was supported with highly visible placements across the WSJ Digital Network as well as on social media. The next key phase of the campaign was marked by WSJ Tech Live, which is a significant event in the calendar of the world’s leading technology innovators. We wanted to amplify the impact of Samsung’s mainstage speaking opportunity at this event by running a parallel print advertorial in The Wall Street Journal newspaper. We built momentum for the final stage of the campaign, which culminated in Samsung’s sponsorship of our CEO Council Summit, by running a print advertorial in WSJ. Magazine and an additional print advertorial in The Wall Street Journal, the latter supported by distribution of sponsored cover-wrapped
copies of the newspaper on Capitol Hill.
Using data and research to find our target audience:
To reach opinion leaders, millennials and Gen-Z people around the world, we leveraged our extensive data to ensure that Samsung’s message connected with the target audience. To find opinion leaders, including C-suites, across our digital network we used audience targeting that takes advantage of segments built from first-party data, as well as sophisticated contextual targeting based on our proprietary Dow Jones Thematic tool, which works to align an advertiser’s message with very specific themes. We know that our print products index highly into this audience – which is why we included print on our media plan – as do our events, which are invitation and/or member only and thus reach an exclusive audience of opinion leaders around the world. To reach millennials and Gen-Z we again utilized first-party data-based audience and contextual targeting, as well as social media and WSJ. Magazine, which we know are effective ways to connect with this demographic.