Improving brand awareness important for printer business: Samsung

Technology company aims to improve its printer brand in order to drive sales globally

Samsung is not a newcomer to the printing space, but the company would like to see its standing in the B2B space improve.

Printing solutions sales and marketing team vice president, Hyesung Ha, said the company reshuffled its printer business into its own unit last year to strenthen its market focus.

“The printer unit has now regained its independence, because it is that important for us,” she said.

“Before it was part of the IT division together with the PC business.”

Ha said the spin-off was a necessary step in ensuring the printer division meets its potential of becoming a key growth area for Samsung going into 2020.

Samsung has been in the printer business since 1990 with the introduction of its COFAX-6000 multifunction laser printer, with the company grabbing the second position in Asia and top spot in countries such as Thailand.

Globally, the company holds the second spot in terms of shipments and has kept the position since 2003.

Renewed approach

Despite the strong sales, Samsung’s brand does not have a strong awareness in the printing space, particularly compared to its smartphone and TV divisions.

“The public and media are not as well aware of Samsung as a printer brand, and it is something we need to address and change,” Ha said.

With a focus on its 2020 vision, Samsung aims to bolster its image in the B2B printer space with a new global marketing campaign that began in Q4 last year.

The headquarters driven initiative began in seven countries, spanning UK, Germany, Italy, France, Spain, China, and Brazil.

Ha said the campaign will be run on a three year plan, and will include investment in TV, print and online advertising.

Read more: Resellers struggling with growth, sales challenges: Fuji Xerox

The US market will be added to the list in June this year, with the marketing push expected to continue into 2015 and spread to other regions.

“In terms of local execution, there will be increased investment with the new campaign and subsidiaries will also carry out their own promotions,” Ha said.

Further investment

Printing solutions sales and marketing team senior vice president, David Song, admits Samsung has struggled in the past to appeal to the B2B segment and lacked the communication know-how.

“Samsung has been strong in B2C, but there were limitations in our B2B strategy,” he said.

Spinning off the printer division into its own entity is designed to help refocus on B2B, and Song said the company is continually improving its messaging and marketing.

“In some ways it is still early days, but it is a matter of time before we catch up,” he said.

Following Samsung’s initial investment in the new marketing campaign, Song said the printer division is encouraged with the market response so far and will invest further.

Patrick Budmar covers consumer and enterprise technology breaking news for IDG Communications. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_budmar.

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