Predictions Event: Interview with Annika Bizon, Samsung

For our Predictions for 2024 and Beyond event last week, I had the opportunity to sit down with Annika Bizon, Marketing and Omnichannel Director for Samsung UK and Ireland, and talk to her about foldables, consumer engagement and lots more — if you missed the event, you can watch the full interview in the video below.

Samsung has placed a huge bet on its premium foldable smartphones, but getting consumers to engage with the products is a major challenge that the company has been tackling with several initiatives. Annika shared some fascinating insights on the progress Samsung is making in this area.

Samsung has seen the intention to purchase a foldable smartphone increase 60% year-on-year globally, and in the UK had almost 30% more pre-orders for its latest foldables, the Galaxy Z Flip5 and Z Fold5, than with the previous generation of products. However, hurdles remain — especially getting the products into people’s hands when they’re making a purchasing decision.

Annika revealed that according to Samsung’s research, two-thirds of consumers want to see a phone in person before buying it but getting them to interact with a foldable device in a retail setting can be tricky. People are often nervous about new technology, particularly something as ground-breaking as a phone with a flexible display.

Samsung’s answer came with its £500K Selfie campaign. This gave consumers a chance to become a “selfie-made half-millionaire” by using one of Samsung’s foldable phones in a retail store to take a selfie. Annika said the results were very positive, with interactions with devices up over 10% year-on-year.

What struck me is that Samsung isn’t afraid to try new ways to get people to embrace the latest technology, and it’s also keen to push its products to younger users who want a device that helps them stand out from the crowd. The brand’s sponsorship deal with Skateboard GB is a good example of this. It sees Samsung working with Sky Brown, Team GB’s youngest-ever Olympic medallist, in the run-up to the 2024 Olympics.

We also discussed other topics, including Samsung’s growing ecosystem of products, smart home technology, wearables and more, before rounding out the interview with Annika sharing one of her own predictions: that artificial intelligence will play a more important role in marketing, specifically in asset creation and delivering more relevant content for consumers. This fitted perfectly with a key theme of our predictions this year, with artificial intelligence taking a very prominent role.

To download the full list of CCS Insight’s predictions for the coming years and watch replays from all three days of the event, check out this page.