Monday, August 19, 2013

A QR Code Done Right?!

Yes. You read that right. A QR Code done very right.

I have a brief confession to make: up until now, I'd never scanned a QR code.

Though I of course downloaded my first QR code reader years ago, when the craze was just bubbling up, I'd never deemed any code worthy of a scan. Yep, not one.

Most codes, of course, are used as afterthoughts — a shortcut to the brand's microsite or product page. Nothing truly compelling, useful, or engaging. Nothing that I'd interrupt 30 seconds of my day to look at. And so, when I got my latest phone, I didn't even bother to download a QR code reader. I was sure I wouldn't need it...

Until now.

Gillette, of all brands, has done it. With a little help from Kate Upton. Take a look at this magazine ad for their ProGlide Styler:

Scanned it yet?

Go ahead, scan that sucker right now.

No? Fine, here's the video that it links to:

Did you enjoy the experience? I did, and not just for the Kate Upton factor. (Hard to believe, I know.)

Here's why I think this QR code was done right:

(1) It's an incomplete experience without it, because the entire ad is built around the content in that code. Unlike codes that are added on to existing ads, this experience doesn't work otherwise.

(2) It's provocative. It asks a question, then invites you to find out the answer. And if you're in Gillette's demo, you want to know the answer.

(3) The result is short, sweet, and satisfying. It delivers what you would expect — more Kate Upton — while also getting the message across (women want their man styled).

In the end, I got a great, funny experience, and Gillette got me to spend an extra 30 seconds with their brand. Well done!

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