I just saw your ad in Fast Company. This one. You know, the one with the cool Microsoft Tag in the upper right-hand corner.
I almost missed it. But I won’t hit you with best practices for these things. Being cute with them is neither here nor there. That’s not what this letter is about.
I have to tell you – I’ve been watching these things over the last year and a half and I’ve seen some good ones and I’ve seen some bad ones. Not really codes. The content behind the codes. The thing that makes a complete experience.
Generally, I like these codes. I think they’re really effective at driving a deeper brand engagement with your current and/or potential customers. And easy. That’s the great thing about them. Snap a picture, get a cool experience. On your own personal screen. Wherever you are.
But I’m getting to the point to where I only like the idea of the codes. Because the execution of the experience has been disappointing. Not a big deal. There are far more things to be genuinely disappointed about.
But you see, I’m a marketer, too. So, I appreciate good brand experiences. And that leads me to your ad.
I see one of these codes on a Porsche ad and I automatically think that I’m going to get a Porsche-like experience. Luxury product, luxury experience, yes?
Rarely do I say that I’ve wasted 15 seconds on anything. But this is the feeling you left me with. I know, I’ll probably never be able to buy one of your products (and quite honestly, will any of your true targets ever scan a tag like this?), so my opinion probably doesn’t matter much at all.
But for what your brand stands for, I would expect to get a killer 15 seconds. Instead, I got a dud.
Using enabling technology like this can be fun and experimental, but I also think there’s such a thing as “on brand.” Regardless of the fun and experiments. I mean, Porsche should be Porsche-like in everything. Shouldn’t you?