Samsung Techwin’s New Marketing Lead Is Focused On Growing Brand’s Customer Base
Get to Know: Samsung Techwin America's Vice President of Sales & Marketing
In October, Samsung Techwin America named Richard Simone its vice president of sales and marketing, charging the marketing veteran with expanding the surveillance technology brand’s retail distribution network.
“Richard has been instrumental in leading high-profile retail and manufacturing companies in scaling their businesses,” said Samsung Techwin president Soonhong Ahn in a release announcing the newly appointed vice president.
Before leading Samsung Techwin’s marketing efforts, Simone served as Panasonic’s vice president of sales and merchandising. During his career, he has worked for a number of national retail organizations, including Montgomery Ward, Kmart, Toys”R”Us and OfficeMax.
Simone says Samsung Techwin is committed to adapting to the evolution of the industry and focused on growing its customer base.
“As we deliver new products to market and transition to different technologies, we want to have the best point-of-purchase (POPs) and interactive displays at as many retailers as possible.”
What mobile device can you not live without?
My smartphone; I’m kind of glued to it.
Which apps do you use most often for work?
The email app keeps me organized, and from a work perspective, enables me to respond to emails as quickly as possible. The calendar component also adds the layer of time management.
What social media network or website do you frequent most when you’re not working?
I regularly monitor news websites, like Seeking Alpha, to stay informed and evaluate the competitive landscape in the industry.
From a social media standpoint, I personally prefer to use LinkedIn to track the latest news and developments around today’s leading businesses, as well as my professional contacts.
What’s the first thing you check on your phone in the morning?
The first thing I check is email – I want to see if anything came through overnight.
Take me through your typical workday.
It’s all about planning and execution. We want to lead by innovation – bringing new, transformative products to market and working with our Channel Partners to ensure we have differentiated products on the retail floors.
Part of my day consists of preparing for meetings and reviewing our product road maps and promotional/marketing calendar.
I also make it a priority to assess the status of our company’s sales. We have had tremendous sales growth, and it’s important that we keep up that momentum and continue to increase our market share.
As previously mentioned, I also take time to review the competitive landscape, so I can continue to monitor new competitors in the marketplace and the types of features and prices they are offering.
What has been the most exciting work development during the past year?
From a professional standpoint, it would be joining Samsung Techwin America in October. I’m excited to expand our retail distribution channels, which I believe will help us continue to increase our sales and market share.
What does your desk look like?
Although I am new to the company, my desk will soon be cluttered with competitive samples. I’m constantly looking at our product roadmaps and competitive products because innovation and differentiation are key elements to our growth.
Knowing the competitive landscape will help us continue to distinguish our brand.
What’s your travel schedule like?
In the past five years, I’ve averaged about 100,000 miles per year. Asia was a personal highlight. I’m honestly grateful that these travel opportunities have allowed me to learn about different cultures and adapt to their lifestyles.
What work challenge keeps you up at night?
Navigating the ever-evolving, competitive landscape poses a great challenge. As more brands and companies enter this industry, it’s essential that we monitor their latest offerings, features and technologies.
In this marketplace – and in general – prices are extremely aggressive, so we’re committed to evaluating the landscape and tailoring our approach to meet the growing needs of today’s tech-savvy consumers.
Can you tell us about a campaign or work project you’d like to do over?
When I was on the retail side of the business, there was a time when we launched a new product a little prematurely. We gave this product prominent ad space and premium floor placement, but unfortunately, it didn’t perform well.
Had we waited another six months for the consumer to adapt to the product category, it likely would have performed better.
Regardless, it was a great learning experience, and without those lessons, I wouldn’t be in my position today.
Tell me about the people who have been most influential in your career.
During my tenure on the retail side, I worked for a vice president who instilled business values that I’ve carried throughout my career. He truly served as a mentor, and I attribute aspects of my successful interactions with retailers over the course of my career to his lessons.
What traits does a person need to succeed in your position?
The ability to interact with people is key. At the end of the day, we have two customers – the consumer and the retailer. Appealing to retailers, understanding their strengths and building relationships with them ultimately paves the way for our products to get placed on their floors.
Adaptability is also valuable because – in order to help retailers sell products to consumers – you, too, have to identify the target audience and adjust to their ever-changing needs.
The landscape is always evolving, so it’s crucial that we learn more about our consumers to help retailers succeed.
Can you tell us something about yourself that your team would be surprised to know?
I do a lot of yard work in my spare time. I find it enjoyable and relaxing.
Why did you go into marketing?
In my first marketing class, my college professor – who was the VP of marketing for a large toy company – really stirred my interest in marketing. During lectures, he conveyed his real-life experiences in a way that was exciting, yet educational.
It was a phenomenal experience. Hearing his stories and working on case studies really fascinated me, and I felt like I received a sneak peek into his day at the office.
What other career would you like to try and why?
I would probably consider a career in finance, especially since I’m a numbers-driven person, maybe investments or M&A.
What’s the last business book you read?
“Real Life MBA” by Jack and Suzy Welch – it was a great read!
Outside of your company’s efforts, what ad campaign or video caught your eye recently?
My all-time favorites are during the Super Bowl. The creativity of the ads is outstanding. The stakes are high because of the investment for a 30-second spot. There seems to be as much attention on the ads as there is on the game.
Some of the more memorable spots are the Budweiser ads with the Clydesdale and the dog. Looking forward to the next Super Bowl!