Samsung goes full funnel on YouTube with launch of Note9

Shannon Denny / May 2019

Samsung shows how to launch new tech in MENA with a full-funnel, always-on YouTube campaign for the Note9


Drive awareness and consideration

Stimulate interest and encourage purchases

Encourage site engagement and e-commerce sales


Developed new YouTube strategy to include full-funnel capability, built around brand and performance pillars, focusing on new action-oriented formats

Designed sophisticated audience strategy using in-market and affinity segments layered with device targeting and custom intent, and remarketing for lower-funnel conversions

Ensured proper measurement setup including Brand Lift Surveys and micro-conversions on website to track lower-funnel performance

Chose Samsung Levant as pilot market for YouTube for Action, then rolled out to rest of MENA following successful results


Results Awareness activity drove best-in-class brand metric and search volume uplifts: Up to 60% increase in ad recall Up to 10% increase in purchase intent and consideration Up to 20% increase in searches on brand terms Up to 100% increase in searches on product keywords

Action formats and targeting showed strong performance, skewing to lower funnel: Conversion rates of up to 10% from custom intent audiences, 3X higher than standard campaigns, with up to 30% lower cost per click than standard campaigns


For the launch of the Galaxy Note 9 smartphone in MENA, Samsung teamed up with Google to unleash an always-on video campaign on YouTube that – for the first time – spanned the entire funnel from branding to performance. Google’s creative team reworked  Samsung’s global assets to suit a wide variety of YouTube formats. Their phased approach aimed to lift and sustain interest and orders throughout the product’s debut period, from the initial teaser to Samsung’s global launch event “Unpacked” to pre-order to local market launch and post-launch.

With an eye on driving awareness and consideration, Samsung’s branding activity addressed the upper funnel through formats including mastheads, TrueView in-stream ads and shorter bumper ads on search results pages, watch pages and the homepage feed.


“It’s great to see YouTube catering to the entire funnel now, it is a key component of all of our campaigns,” Aram Malatjalian, Digital Marketing Manager, Samsung Levant

Aiming to stir up interest and encourage consumers to take action, Samsung’s performance activity focused on lower-funnel metrics such as leads, website conversions and sales. For these goals, the team combined TrueView for Action and TrueView for Shopping formats. The former allowed them to overlay Samsung’s video ads with prominent calls to action and headline text, while the latter let them make the ads interactive and bring viewers closer to making a Note9 purchase.

To ensure the ads reached the right consumers, Samsung implemented a sophisticated audience strategy. At the beginning of the campaign, the focus was on reaching loyal Samsung owners, technophiles and consumers in the market for new smartphones, so the team leveraged custom affinity, affinity and in-market audiences. As the activity progressed, they developed remarketing lists and similar audiences as a way of reaching consumers likely to be interested in hearing more about the Note9.

In order to assess the campaign’s outcomes, the team made sure to put powerful measurement capabilities in place. For instance, they implemented full reporting on everything from reach to view-through metrics, introduced micro-conversions for video and conducted Brand Lift Surveys.

“Setting up proper measurability in place helped us understand customers’ intent and pointed out the success of this campaign. This truly required a collaborative effort,” said Karen Sewasa, Senior Account Manager - Tech, Google MENA.

As Samsung MENA was one of the first advertisers in MENA to test out this new performance approach on YouTube, a phased approach was used. Levant was a pilot market to carry out an A/B test on YouTube for Action. Initial tests showed this new strategy was performing well, generating 3.6 times more clicks, 70% lower cost per click and a 3.3-fold better conversion rate than standard TrueView campaigns. These positive results gave the team confidence to roll out YouTube for Action to the rest of MENA, where it was seen to similarly drive better performance results in terms of clicks and conversions.

“Once we saw the test results coming out of Levant, it was clear how to use both YouTube offerings simultaneously - one optimizes for conversions and one for views,” said Joy Adeboye, Programmatic Manager, Precision

As for the upper funnel activity and the impact on brand metrics, analysis at the end of the campaign showed a 60% increase in ad recall in Egypt, 35% in the Levant, 20% in Saudi and 25% in the Gulf countries. In terms of purchase intent and consideration, the growth was 5% in Egypt and 10% or higher in each of the Levant, Saudi and Gulf countries.

Searches for the Note9 increased too. For instance, the search lift on brand terms was 10% in Saudi and 20% in Egypt, while searches on product keywords went up by 45% in the Gulf countries and 100% in the Levant.

Custom intent audiences produced standout metrics, with conversion rates of up to 10% in some countries and an up to 30% lower cost per click than comparable Samsung campaigns.


“Samsung was one of the first in MENA to roll out YouTube for Action and they now consider it an ‘always on’ channel,” said Adam Debowski, Industry Manager - Tech, Google MENA
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