Commanding a large audience of Twitter users is the primary goal of brands on Twitter. Whether they will admit it or not, every brand wants to see their follower numbers shoot up and knock @SamsungMobile from the top spot. While @StarbucksCoffee is gaining ground on the mobile giant, their dominance over the last few years will be hard to top.
The success of @SamsungMobile can be traced by looking at their data, analyzing their tweets, and looking at their multi-account approach to local and global marketing. My goal is to show you how they have become the most successful brand on Twitter so that you can start working towards emulating their strategies.
You will read a number of tactics that will be outside the normal needs, and budget, of a smaller business. Some of these tactics you can scale to fit your needs. Some you can not, but it never hurts to plan for the future!
Just how successful is @SamsungMobile?
To put it in a word: Very. As of this writing, @SamsungMobile has 10,948,289 followers. To give that perspective, in second place is @Starbucks with 9,112,334 followers. @Chanel sits in third with 8,364,893 followers.
Those two accounts, a coffee shop and a perfume manufacturer, are not exactly related to Samsung in any way. To look at more direct competition you have to go way, way down the list where you’ll find BlackBerry with 4,484,376 followers.
@SamsungMobile is clearly ahead of everyone in the mobile phone market when it comes to having the largest possible audience to market to on Twitter. There will, however, always be an asterisk next to this statistic because Apple doesn’t have an official Twitter account.
Where do all of these followers come from?!?
Samsung use two main strategies to build their following on the @SamsungMobile account:
- Having sub-accounts which are tailored to specific countries and regional demographics.
- Their consistently high quality, and highly visual, content.
The average user will largely be ignorant to this fact, but Samsung have positioned themselves in many different communities and regions by simply having more than one account. They have separate accounts for different languages and countries, and tailor the content on those accounts to those audiences.
Here’s just half of the eighteen officially verified Samsung Twitter accounts that are currently active and each one has its own unique content for that region:
— Samsung Mobile India (@SamsungMobileIN) July 18, 2015
— SamsungMobileArabia (@SamsungMobileME) July 13, 2015
- The content is tweaked
- The tweeting times are optimized for each location
- The language is altered for each
Who said that a mega-sized global brand can’t do local marketing?
Samsung show quite clearly how larger companies need to break their audiences down into smaller and more manageable segments. They do indeed have nearly 11,000,000 followers on their main account, but they got there with the help of all the smaller regional accounts. Even if you don’t have the resources for this you can still create specific tweets on one main account to go out at specific times in the day to best reach those in that time zone.
Looking through the tweets for each regional account you won’t see any sort of message like ‘Follow the main @SamsungMobile account for more!’ What you will see is that every account shares the same hashtags. This is how all of the smaller accounts support the main @SamsungMobile account, and come together to tell Samsung’s larger brand story. You’ll see them all come together on basic hashtags like #GalaxyS6, #GalaxyNote4, and #SamsungLevel.
The exceptional content of @SamsungMobile, and their marketing messages
A number of multinational brands have multiple Twitter accounts with custom tailored content. Samsung isn’t entirely unique in this, they’re just the best at it. All of these 11,000,000 fans aren’t continuing to follow Samsung’s main account because they took some time to speak in their native language, or tweet a local image. You can get Twitter followers with basic psychology, but it takes a bit more than that to keep them happy over the long term! Twitter users are always one click away from an unfollow when they feel like an account isn’t giving them what they want.
@SamsungMobile, however, gives them what they want. First, as should alway be the case, let’s look at the type of content going out over their main account. As you’ll see it is all highly visual, with no one particular type of media preferred too greatly over another:
— Samsung Mobile (@SamsungMobile) July 20, 2015
— Samsung Mobile (@SamsungMobile) July 18, 2015
— Samsung Mobile (@SamsungMobile) July 14, 2015
— Samsung Mobile (@SamsungMobile) July 18, 2015
That was two photos of varying presentation, a GIF, and a Twitter video. These four that I have picked out are not isolated examples. Every single tweet that they send out has some sort of visual attached to it. This is no small feat with 1 – 5 tweets coming out every single day of the year. There’s no question that they invest wisely in content creators.
How aggressive is @Samsungmobile’s keen marketing strategy for making money off all of these Twitter followers? About as aggressive as a clear, windless, summer Sunday. Looking through months of direct tweets from the @SamsungMobile account, excluding retweets, found:
- Two tweets linking to their Galaxy Gifts offer page.
- One link to the Galaxy Games website.
- One link to the unveiling of the ultra-cool Iron Man Galaxy S6 unboxing, this link was changed to the homepage after the launch.
- Eight direct links to the Galaxy homepage where the ‘Buy Now’ button is featured way down at the bottom of the page.
- One direct link to the Gear VR headset.
That’s looking from July 23 to May 1. That’s 83 entire days for them to send out 13 links to their website, and only 9 of those links have any sort of real sales aspect to them. I don’t have any direct access to what sort of conversion rates Samsung get out of the @SamsungMobile account, but I’m going to take an educated guess and say that it is very, very low. Why? Because they’re not using this account for any direct marketing. I believe their goals are:
- Telling their brand story to a wide audience.
- Showing people what their devices are capable of.
- Getting into Twitter user’s Timelines as a highly entertaining, non-stop advertisement like the TV days.
Thinking of the main account as similar to a TV advertisement is the way to go. You never bought anything the moment you saw something on TV, you just saw it and grew your desire.
With that said, the other Samsung accounts for regionalized tweeting are much more heavily linked to sales landing pages in a conventional information sharing way familiar to social media marketers. On those pages you’ll find that nearly half of all tweets have a link which directs their users to a local sales page. Sometimes this is a regionalized Samsung subdomain, sometimes this is to an affiliate like Amazon.
The work involved in creating links to each regionalized sales site would likely be pretty high. Instead, Samsung have taken that burden off the @SamsungMobile account and put it on the shoulders of the regional accounts. They can create links to their local
Summarizing Samsung’s Twitter marketing approach
Looking at the evidence above we can learn that Samsung have a two-tiered Twitter marketing approach:
- The top tier is the @SamsungMobile account, with nearly 11 million followers being entertained in a TV commercial-like fashion. It churns out general product awareness tweets, and uses high quality content to keep user engagement high and get retweets to spread the brand story.
- The second tier is the regional Twitter accounts which both support the top tier with followers, while pushing the sales and marketing goals of that specific region.
This arrangement allows Samsung the maximum possible exposure in their key markets, with the best possible content. It frees the main account from having to make sales amongst its global audience, which can be difficult considering all the variables involved, and instead focuses on brand and product awareness. Your Twitter marketing can get the best of both worlds, and a highly engaged global audience, by emulating Samsung’s comprehensive approach.