Q&A with Nikos Bartzoulianos, Senior Director, Head of Brand Marketing at Samsung Europe

How do you ensure your purpose and values shape your organizational decision-making?

We live and breathe our Samsung Values and tech for a good mission. Our employees are constantly challenged to do what they can’t and dare to achieve the impossible. As a company with a tremendous track record of innovation for good, employees embrace this in every aspect of their work: from constantly being challenged and enabled to innovate to finding ways to do the right thing and see how our tech can actually improve consumers’ lives. Our SmartThings campaigns demonstrate how Samsung tech can help people monitor their energy usage, feel safer, and be more in control of their lives. 

Nikos Bartzoulianos
Senior Director, Head of Brand Marketing at Samsung Europe

How does your brand connect the dots across your ecosystem?

It’s been more than a year since we started communicating the value of the Samsung Ecosystem through initiatives like SmartThings and the European “Embrace Your Game” campaign. This is where the power of One Samsung truly comes to life; consumers can see the ecosystem’s benefits and have a Samsung solution whatever their need, style or preference.

How do you see the role of AI (and/or other emerging technologies) within your ecosystem and within your brand?

The role of AI has rapidly advanced in recent years; Samsung has invested heavily in AI development to optimize high-quality device performance and to deliver a new way for users to interact with their mobile devices.  

For example, Galaxy AI is a comprehensive mobile AI experience powered by both on-device AI and cloud-based AI and enabled by our open collaborations with like-minded industry leaders. 

Samsung Gauss, the generative AI model developed by Samsung Research, consists of Samsung Gauss Language, Samsung Gauss Code, and Samsung Gauss Image. Galaxy AI is planned to utilize certain aspects of this model.

We have already utilized AI across a number of product lines. In our home appliances, artificial intelligence determines how much detergent you need for your wash, and your oven and extractor fan knows what settings to use based on your hob usage. AI used in our Jet Stick vacuum cleaners understands the type of floor you are cleaning and adjusts its power accordingly. On our TVs, AI is used to upscale content to 8K, ensuring you get the best possible picture quality regardless of the source. 

In addition, across the business, AI tools are beginning to be utilized to speed up processes or find new solutions to existing problems. Like most brands, we are still in an exploratory phase, but with the launch of Samsung Gauss, we are capitalizing on our AI investment that also involves our seven AI research centres around the world. 

How does your ecosystem enable your brand to be truly customer centric?

All Samsung software and hardware integrations and products are designed with the consumer in mind. People wanted a smart way to track their energy usage, find and track valuables and pets and enjoy their movie with the best possible ambiance. Our SmartThings integrated ecosystem was designed to fulfill these exact needs, putting customers at the center of the design. 

How do partnerships and alliances help you create disproportionate value for customers? 

Samsung is a unique company. Our scale and ecosystem are great assets, but the most important is our openness. It allows us to have a vast array of partnerships across the world. Through this openness and the opportunities it allows, consumers get added value from our products and services. If you look at SmartThings, our integrated IOT solution, we collaborate with well over 350 different brands and over 3,000 different devices. So this means we are helping create a real smart home for people without demanding they buy into a single ecosystem. 

How do you integrate customer intelligence across your organization to create a cohesive, brand-led experience? Who owns your customer? 

The business is committed to being customer led, and throughout the organization, key teams are dedicated to acting in the best interests of the customer. Our global Consumer Marketing Intelligence network allows us to create consistency and a cohesive brand experience.   A core area of focus is ensuring we have the best customer experience we can offer the market – we utilize multiple different data sources and synthesize the output to ensure we have a clear story so we can act in the best interests of our customers. We put particular focus on achieving this through a fully omni-channel approach to ensure we’re meeting the needs of customers through any channel they choose. 

Best Global Brands 2023

Brands as Acts of Leadership