Historically, Samsung has been keen to slander Apple and its products with ads, but for a while, a few years back, the Korean outfit took to the back seat, preferring to let Google take control of the Apple-bashing. But while, as has been revealed during the recent events in the current Apple vs. Samsung court case in California, the Galaxy maker did cease to attack Apple for a while, the company’s marketing team saw the death former CEO and co-founder Steve Jobs as “the best opportunity” to re-ignite its smear campaign, running the Next Big Thing ads which directly mocked Apple customers.
When Steve Jobs passed, there was a natural worry from those affiliated with Apple that the company would struggle without his guidance. After all, it was he who had introduced pivotal, game-changing products like the iPod, iPhone, iPad and MacBook Air, turning the fruit company around from the brink of despair to what has been, at times, the world’s most expensive company.
This period of uncertainty, it has been revealed, was something that Samsung’s marketing arm wished to capitalize on, with newly-uncovered emails showing that Samsung wished to take advantage of the situation.
An email trail shows that Samsung America’s VP of U.S. sales Mike Pennington cynically described the death of Jobs as “the best opportunity” to run the campaign, as consumers might be worried about Apple’s future product innovations following the death of its famous co-founder.
Sorry to continue to push this issue, but I have seen this far too long and I know this is our best opportunity to attack iPhone …
Chief marketing officer Todd Pendleton replied, giving the go-ahead:
Hey Michael, We are going to execute what you are recommending in our holiday [Galaxy S2] campaign and go head to head with iPhone 4S.
It’s not perhaps the most tasteful in which one should look to attain one-upmanship over a rival, but then again, it’s hard to condemn Samsung in an industry where market share, margins and the bottom line seem to be the most important thing.
We learned yesterday from patent trial evidence that Samsung was worried about running ads that directly attacked Apple, wanting Google to do it for them.
The Wall Street Journal posted the complete trail as a PDF.
It was earlier revealed that Apple’s senior VP of marketing Phil Schiller was so concerned about these ads that he emailed Tim Cook to suggest a change of ad agency to fight back. That didn’t happen, though Apple is currently planning to expand its line-up of digital agencies.