Digital Campaign, Non Social Media: Samsung Biologics' Virtual Exhibition Experience

Samsung Biologics
Samsung Biologics' digital virtual reality exhibition hall was a highlight of the 2020 BIO convention. (Samsung Biologics)

Category: Digital Campaign Non Social Media
Winning campaign: Samsung Biologics Virtual Exhibition Experience
Client: Samsung Biologics

One consequence of the coronavirus pandemic lockdowns has been the wholesale enforced switch from in-person to virtual events. That shift has provided an opportunity for nimble marketers who responded quickly to the new, highly competitive digital format.

Samsung Biologics is one of those marketers, nabbing the win for non social media digital campaigns with a virtual exhibition. It used digital virtual reality technology to create an exhibition hall that was a highlight of the 2020 BIO convention.

The company had been exploring ways to connect more widely with global clients and shareholders even before COVID-19, James Choi, Samsung Biologics’ chief information and marketing officer, said. At the top of the agenda was a way to transform brick-and-mortar exhibition rooms in South Korea used by Samsung Biologics to showcase its technologies and expertise into a digital experience.

“This underlying inspiration was swiftly accelerated to execution” when global travel restrictions caused by the pandemic resulted in major events like BIO going virtual, Choi said. “We had to quickly work out how to combine the best of the traditional trade show booths…and our on-site exhibition tour.”

RELATED: AstraZeneca, Samsung reach $331M biologics manufacturing deal amid Korean CMO's expansion push

In less than three months, the team managed to create an experience that was seamless on any mobile, tablet or PC. Visitors are welcomed into a virtual reception area with soft music, where they can become oriented with the platform. From there, they can access a resource library, take a virtual tour of Samsung Biologics’ physical facilities, request additional information or schedule one-on-one meetings.

That is also the entry point for three virtual exhibition halls—covering contract manufacturing, contract development and contract research—that highlight the company's capabilities and service offerings through video clips, whitepapers and interactive content.

“We’re really proud of the end result because we think it really captures the innovation and the speed that people associate with the Samsung brand,” Choi said.

It was also important to make the experience more widely accessible, opening it up to the general public as well as the usual trade show audience of industry professionals and current and future Samsung clients, according to Jiwon Chun, the company’s digital marketing team lead.

“We want our visitors to really get a feel for our company and what it is like to step into our facilities or into a physical exhibition booth at a conference,” she said. Having a variety of content types available makes it possible to deliver marketing messages more effectively. And of course, the virtual exhibition is available year-round from any location.

RELATED: Samsung Biologics plots $2B 'super plant' as COVID-19 sends sales through the roof

To give an idea of that increased reach, during BIO 2019, around 700 people visited Samsung Biologics’ exhibition booth, but switching to virtual in 2020 resulted in more than 3,000 visitors—an increase greater than 400%.

Of course, having an amazing digital platform isn’t worth much if it can’t be placed in front of its intended audience.

The company covered that ground with a media blitz through social media, website, press releases and targeted industry publications, including FiercePharma, through banner advertising and a subscriber mailshot, Claire Kim, global PR and marketing specialist at Samsung Biologics, said.

“In today’s overflowing media landscape, creative and innovative thinking helps us to stay ahead of the game and also allows us to present our solutions to our target audience more effectively and powerfully,” she said.

Digital Campaign, Non Social Media: Samsung Biologics' Virtual Exhibition Experience