it’s from burnett, it’s for samsung

Making cellphones is a tough business. Partly fashion, and thus heavily dependent on taste, partly a factor of which networks offer your phone, and wholly (don’t do the math on this sentence, it doesn’t check out) devoid of real value because plan pricing has made them secondary.

Yes, the iPhone is an exception.

Now, everyone wants to have the next iPhone because, unlike the Razr, the popularity of the iPhone went beyond pure fashion and into functionality, badge value and goodies like that. Samsung is the latest to try to become the next iPhone by, predictably, hewing close to the visual road that iPhone has gone down:

[ Samsung TV spot ]

Leo Burnett, Chicago is responsible for the creative…including the baffling voiceover talent decision. The voice is jarring for a reason I can’t really pinpoint except to say that it is too Tom Bodat/Motel 6-y to be the voice of what is supposed to be a cool new technological device. It just doesn’t fit.

The more I watch the spot, the more it bothers me.

It doesn’t bother me as much as the thankless task that Burnett has been tasked with, which is to differentiate and tell a story about what is nothing more than a me-too product. It shows in the design, it shows in the spot art direction that focuses in on the phone as it navigates life, it shows in the fact that the spot has nothing really to say about this phone that is different from the iPhone or other knockoffs.

Still, despite the challenges inherent in the product, one would have hoped that Burnett would have tried some sort of disruption to stand out more. Instead, they use the line “it’s from Samsung, it’s for you” which both insults my intelligence and positions the phone as another crappy product that some faceless company would like me to buy.

I am not really high on this creative, if you couldn’t tell.


One response to “it’s from burnett, it’s for samsung

  1. It is amazing how much all the iPhone like work feels like and looks like the iPhone work. Another example is Sprint’s Samsung Instinct at and see the Instinct vs. iPhone videos.

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