LG will spend big on marketing the LG G5

by: Andrew GrushFebruary 24, 2016


Over the weekend LG officially unveiled the LG G5, completely taking the G Series in a new direction in terms of design and software. LG isn’t stopping there though, as it hopes to also take marketing to new heights as well.

While certainly not having the same kind of financial crisis as the likes of Blackberry, HTC, Sony Mobile, and Nokia, LG has struggled over the last few years to really stand out against its core competitors in the mobile market, namely Apple and Samsung.

Last year LG had hoped to win over fans by sticking to its removable battery/back and microSD guns, while Samsung wowed the world with a major departure in design that came at the sacrifice of these features. The LG G4 remains a great handset but it’s hard to deny that the phone failed to make a big splash in the market, and while the V10 saw some renewed excitement, LG is hoping for a much bigger reception with the LG G5. And that’s where strong marketing will come into play.

lg g5 camera module demonstration aa-14

LG believes that the unique design and philosophies offered by the LG G5 will ring true with consumers, but understands that without marketing, no one will ever notice. LG isn’t disclosing its spending figures, but it does say they are “setting aside more budget for marketing than we could probably afford”, which is a pretty vague statement, but drives the point across that LG isn’t going to sit around and let this phone fall into the background – at least not without a fight.

LG’s mobile chief, Juno Cho, concedes that this aggressive budget could result in a toll on the company’s revenues in the short-term, but believes that LG’s future vision is worth the gamble.

LG-G5-11See also: LG G5 officially announced: release date, specs, and features159

So what steps are they taking to help the LG G5 shine? First, LG is working with over 200 carrier partners to launch the phone simultaneously in the US, Europe, and South Korea when it arrives this April. Second, they are already being bolder than we’ve seen from LG in the past. Not only did they confidentially launch the phone hours ahead of the Galaxy S7, instead of taking a wait-and-see approach, they also went from their typical low key hotel conferences to a massive hillside hall “the size of an airplane hangar”.

These are good steps, but now LG needs to hit things hard with marketing. This is an area where LG has struggled with some in the past, with its strangest marketing moment no doubt being when they thought it was a good idea to represent the LG G Flex as a living hand… yah.

That said, more recent commercials with Joseph Gordon-Levitt haven’t been too bad, so here’s to hoping they continue that direction, instead of going back to living hand madness. Even if they can’t steal the thunder from Apple or Samsung, if they are able to bite away sales from struggling companies like HTC and Sony, LG could find itself further rising forward.

Of course, marketing only gets you so far. You need a good product. Does the LG G5 fit that bill? Depends on who you ask.

The controversial decision to remove the app drawer has some Android purists up in arms, though others are more understanding, or are fine with simply installing a 3rd party launcher. And it’s pretty likely “the average Joe consumer” won’t really care either way, leaving this to be a debate only for those of us techies. As for the design, the reception here seems to range from “I love it, so sexy” to “eww… that’s hideous, get it away from me”. Personally, my thoughts on the LG G5 originally fell into that second category, but I have slowly started to change my mind. This is similar to my reaction when I first got my hands on the Nexus 6P. Of course it could be one of those things where it’s so ugly it’s endearing – like that puppy that’s so awkward looking, it somehow manages to be ‘cute’ (see: chinese crested).

What it really will come down to for many of us is performance, something we can’t really speak on until we have the opportunity to perform a full review. Not everyone loves the Nexus 6P’s design, but most agree its performance is amazing and worth picking up for that alone. If LG G5 hits the same mark, and combines it with massive marketing and a decent price tag, things could certainly go well for LG. Only time will tell for sure, though.

What do you think of the LG G5? If LG markets it heavily, could they provide a more legit challenge to Samsung, Apple, and the growing Chinese giants like Huawei? Let us know your thoughts in the comments.

  • I think the LG G5 is a beautiful pone. Originally I felt as you did, I think it was really ugly (the back of it). But the final product to me is beautiful and refined.

    I don’t mind the removal of the app drawer and the other UI elements, as long as it means the phone will run smoother than the G4 (had it). I think the performance will be great. I’m just a bit bummed about Android 6.0 adoptable storage being unsupported. That would’ve really made it a superphone. You can’t decide what the customer should want or think, let us decide that. Give us options.


    What’s going to draw them in is the “friends”.

  • Marty

    If LG can manage to make the G5 easily available without carrier branding, that will help sell it. Carrier branding ruins good devices.

    • Ichibanmugen

      true but many cariers bundle it with their simplans and unfortunately they temper with their carier branded phones with carier branded software. At least that is my experience here in Holland.

      • Marty

        Here in the US, carriers treat the branded phones as their own property. The user is only allowed to use it according to their design and wishes…at least that’s the way it seems. Most unbranded phones have functions and features the carriers eliminate on their branded phones. Simple things like being able to activate the hotspot function from your smartwatch is disabled on carrier branded devices. Plus you have to wait so much longer for updates…if the carrier decides to actually put out an update.

    • JMG

      Yes true..and carrier apps and software make the phone laggy…thats why i only buy international model unlocked.

  • brusslesprouts

    i was a fan of the G3 and owned the G4 for a few months then went to the motorola x pure. After owning a pure android phone i dont think i want to go back to anything other then that. I did however like the buttons on the back and DT2W. Depending on the software on the g5 i may or may not switch back.

  • silkdog

    With excellent marketing the G5 will become “the next big thing”. Oops, sorry Samsung.

    • BritishGuy94

      No level of marketing can sell such an ugly phone. Oops sorry LG.

  • Shamoy Rahman

    Waiting for the next Xperia coming out this September.

    • BritishGuy94

      Been cancelled

  • vmxr

    they also need to price the phone and the accessories right if they want to succeed

  • saksham

    lg s marketing strategy is weird i have never seen a single ad by lg in terms of phones in india yet i can see their phones on counters on display in a general mobile store whereas everyone knows about samsung and its high end smartphones as their ads almost last 2 months after initial release

  • Name

    “Life’s good when you pay more”

  • Kyng

    I hope this works for them. If I didn’t have my 6p, and if the g5 had a 5.5 inch screen minimum, I would go for it. As I seem to be on a yearly refresh cycle with my phone’s(no idea how I got to this point), if the next v10 keeps the same features, excellent camera, and uses the 820, it’ll be top 2 consideration alongside next year’s nexus. Talked my friend into leaving Samsung and getting the v10 and he does not regret it in any way.

  • RunningGreat

    LG needs to include the Camera Module and the Audio module for FREE, then it might have a chance.

    • b

      In my country info is that G5 will be sold with camera module, but I don’t give a fuck about camera- I want B&O module…

      • JMG

        They should give the option to choose which module we prefer…i would definetly prefer the b&o module aswell.

  • 1213 1213

    I’m interested to see how it does. To me it sounds like nothing more than a product full of gimmicks. If the attachments bring it close to the price of s7 then it’ll definitely fail.

  • charlie Jason

    They can advertise on how they fired the whole design team for coming up with that bulge.

  • Kunal Narang

    LG G5 is an excellent device in terms of functionality. The modular design is revolutionary, since Google is also teaming up to develop modular designs. A future where modules could just be swapped in an out and functionality is redefined in a way is a amazingly simple to use is nearing. LG should be applauded for their effort. LG is an underdog fighting against the big players, but this company can’t be underestimated!

    • Babu

      Spot on. Lg truly try for innovation every time. I respect their approach.

  • Goblin Shark

    Since this has been mentioned a few times I did an experiment today and just asked random people with Androids to check their app drawer for the NFL app. 7 people so far and none of them knew what an app drawer was.