It's interesting to note that the company has, in a first, changed its marketing approach and has re-directed the river of cash from advertising to sales promotions like rebates, coupons and other incentives. For just the two first quarters of 2013, Samsung Electronics spent a whopping 934 billion won ($888 million) on sales promotions, up 38.7% from a year earlier, and another 1.71 trillion won ($661 million, down 60%) on advertising in its home country of South Korea alone.
Samsung's spending on such promotions overseas has also spiked sharply this year, with an increase from 2.37 trillion won ($2.2 billion) last year, to 4.89 trillion won ($4.6 billion) in 2013.
In other words, it's quite likely that Samsung will top Apple's marketing spending for a second year in a row, and that's not overly surprising, considering the sheer amount of cash that's being thrown around. There's obviously nothing wrong with Samsung spending its piles of cash in any way it feels appropriate, yet these figures do showcase just how hard it is for smaller manufacturers to actually compete.