Quilted Northern, the bathroom tissue manufacturer, has launched a new print advertisement, which features a QR Code. Before commenting on the code resolve, let me say that I love the code's call to action, which reads, "Hear what Carmen has to say about Quilted Northern Strong & Soft." Simple and direct, a reader of the ad will know exactly what to expect once the code is scanned (read: managing consumer expectations). What is a little vague, however, is the copy that refers to the code reader app and how to download. Here the copy reads, "Download the app at ScanLife.com." Not to be too picky but, what app is to be downloaded, cannot it not be named as a QR Code reader app?
When the code is scanned, the reader of the ad is brought to a 22-second YouTube video, which is about 22 seconds too long, says nothing worthwhile and delivers even less in the way of value and/or benefit to the consumer. A well-designed print ad, but a poorly executed 2D experience. Why no information about how or why the tissue is stronger or softer? Why no information about where to purchase? Why no purchase incentive since most consumers probably shop bathroom tissue paper on price alone? These all seem like lay-up questions, yet it appears as though the marketing and creative team didn't think twice about them.
If a consumer where to go to the company's desktop website, they would find additional information about the product and company that might aid in the purchase decision. For example, the company supports Komen for the Cure, which is a breast cancer charity, but no one would know that coming into the campaign via the print ad and code scan. Too bad, because socially responsible acts like this mean a great deal to a great many people, and often give cause for purchasing a product.
I read and view a 2D campaign like this and wonder what the objectives are and how, if at all, they will be met.
2D Barcode Litmus Test: FAIL