By Erin Letson Posted August 11, 2008, 10:56 AM EDT
Cell phones have gone through flip and slide phases, but touch is the most evident PDA trend of the moment. Following the Canadian launches of the LG Touch Phone and the Apple iPhone, Samsung introduced its new Instinct model at a party for 100 at the West Queen West bar the Social Thursday night.
Leading up to the phone's launch in stores Friday (with Bell as a service provider), Samsung's campaign started building buzz in July with a guerilla marketing stunt featuring silent street protesters wearing shirts that said “Ignore the hype. Trust your Instinct.” They also created a number of profiles on sites like Twitter and Flickr, and launched a YouTube video (more on that <a href=“hthttp://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20080731.WBwellsblog20080731091353/WBStory/WBwellsblogtarget=” _cke_saved_href=“hthttp://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20080731.WBwellsblog20080731091353/WBStory/WBwellsblogtarget=” _blank“=““>here</a>). “We know that social networking is top of mind for the demographic that this phone really appeals to,” said Jo Allan, marketing manager in Samsung Canada's wireless terminals division. “The ability to speak to our customers through certain social networking sites was part of our integrated marketing campaign."<br> </p><p></p>
The Instinct launch party continued the interactive trend by holding a contest that allowed guests a glimpse at two other parties happening in Montreal and, later on, in Vancouver. Guests who took photos on their cell phones and sent them to be posted on large screens at each party could win an Instinct.
Attendees also had the opportunity to try the new phones at the “Check Your Instinct” station, where they could borrow the device for a portion of the evening. “We want to attract early adopters of new technology and portray that Samsung is a brand that wants to talk to customers,” said Jacquelyn Corbett Cyr of Espresso Brand Infiltration, who planned the party and worked on the marketing campaign. Corbett Cyr also pointed out the opportunity for guests to discuss the party after it happened and share photos on a site called Conversation Bytes. “This brings users together even after the event,” she said.
Allan summed up the party, which received a simple decor treatment of balloons and flashy lighting, as a “celebration for being the first Samsung touch device in Canada.” The Instinct phone launched in the United States with Sprint on June 20.