NEW YORK: Samsung, the electronics manufacturer, is looking to turn data and consumer research into “true insights”, an approach that has helped the company better understand its marketing performance and most loyal clientele.

Michelle Froah, VP/Marketing Excellence, Strategy & Integration at Samsung Electronics America, discussed this subject during a session held by The Marketing Society at Advertising Week 2017.

And in highlighting a current “elephant in the room” for the industry, Froah suggested that insights – a core component of the marketing toolkit, but a term often lacking in clear definition – were worthy of emphasis.

“I think, for me, the elephant in the room is all about ‘true insights’, and how you can take true insights to drive success,” she said. (For more details, read WARC’s in-depth report: How Samsung leverages “true insights”.)

“A true insight, once it’s shared, becomes an obvious truth. So, it’s not a fact; it’s not a bunch of data. It really is a truth that you have to do a little digging to get to.”

“Sometimes, I think we wouldn't know a true insight unless a herd of elephants stampeded us.”

In driving progress in this area, Froah reported, Samsung looks to members of its data and analytics group to focus on “performance marketing”. This requires not just delivering hard numbers, but finding the real information behind them.

“What I wanted them to do with the data was really uncover insights that were meaningful to [show] how effective our marketing was,” she explained.

“A lot of times, we’re looking for an answer, like ROI. But that doesn’t tell the whole story of how effective things are, and what real insights we’ve had along the way of seeing how effective our programs have been, or how well we’ve connected with consumers.”

Similarly, as Samsung sought to recover from a brand crisis following on from the news that some of its Note 7 phones had caught fire, it “spent a lot of time with consumers”, especially its biggest fans, to discover powerful truths.

“And the insight was that these loyalists were willing to accept some of our setbacks as long as their loyalty was recognised. And that drove some really unique, first-ever-for-us, engagement programs that we put in place,” said Froah.

Data sourced from WARC