The Samsung Brand is Engulfed in Flames—Is Your Brand Next
It’s not uncommon to see brands in the headlines. Sometimes it’s for their successes—like when LinkedIn came around and allowed influencers to post short videos or when Facebook Messenger took a dive into chatbots. Sometimes it’s for making major organizational shifts—like when Oracle purchased NetSuite, giving a $9.3 billion nod to cloud and stepping out of its enterprise-only approach. Sometimes, though, it’s for all the wrong reasons—like when the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 started catching fire spontaneously. Those combustions caused substantial collateral damage, and scrapping the Note 7 cost the company billions on top of heavy blows to its reputation. In an occurrence that tops even the disaster of the Galaxy Note 7 recall, this last Friday, the manufacturer issued a recall for 2.8 million of some 34 different models of the brand’s washing machines.
How did this happen? How did we get here? At some point, businesses began focusing more on innovation than quality, rushing products to market when they weren’t ready for the sake of being first. This cross isn’t Samsung’s alone to bear. Vehicle and food recalls are almost as common to report on as gas prices. This mentality is especially evident in the tech industry, as many brands unapologetically project a “release-first-fix-afterward” strategy.
We know some industries are driven by breakthroughs and cutting-edge innovation, and it’s not innovation that’s the bad guy. Rather, the issue is innovation at the expense of quality.
Over at The Marketing Scope, we’ve broken down not only the crash and burn that was the Note 7, but—and more importantly—what lessons marketing can take away when trying to balance quality and innovation. Do you really know your customers’ attitudes about risk? The Diffusion of Innovation theory holds that only about 13.5 percent of consumers are interested in being “early adopters.” What might that say about your approach?
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