The smartphone business is undoubtedly a cutthroat market, thanks to the rapid development and innovations which are constant variables in such an industry. And because of this, smartphone manufacturers are doing their best to outdo the competition with superior products and sound marketing practices. Unfortunately, there are those that employ dirty marketing practices to further their cause. Such is the case with Samsung which has been found out to hire students to post fake negative reviews about a rival smartphone manufacturer.
Earlier this week, it has been discovered that Samsung Electronics Taiwan has hired students in order to post fake online reviews criticizing arch-rival HTC's smartphones. Following the discovery of this dirty marketing tactic, Taiwan’s fair-trade officials has commenced an investigation. As a response to these allegations, Samsung has released a statement to the media which indicates that the company admits to engaging in such unfavorable marketing practices. Samsung says that the whole thing was rather "unfortunate" and one that went against the company's "fundamental principles".
The recent incident was unfortunate, and occurred due to insufficient understanding of these fundamental principles.
Samsung Electronics Taiwan (SET) has ceased all marketing activities that involve the posting of anonymous comments, and will ensure that all SET online marketing activities will be fully compliant with the company's Online Communications Credo.
We regret any inconvenience this incident may have caused. We will continue to reinforce education and training for our employees to prevent any future recurrence.
As reported by TheRegister, some of the malicious reviews went like this:
one user complained that his girlfriend's HTC One X phone was always on the blink, while Samsung's Galaxy Note phone was described as far better than HTC's Sensation XL handset. Another post even asked if anyone who owned a Samsung phone had been given a job promotion.
As for HTC, they are seriously considering to take legal action against Samsung.
Samsung is a company that doesn't shy away from unconventional marketing strategies. While it is always good to adopt a new marketing strategy to keep things fresh, hiring people to straight-up badmouth the competition certainly isn't one of them. Samsung is not exactly new to controversy but this stunt this puts the company in a new low.Contact Us for News Tips, Corrections and Feedback