Moen uses Microsoft Tag

Moen, the kitchen and bath hardware company, has launched a new print advertisement which features a Microsoft Tag.

This ad has got to be one of the best written 2D-based advertisements I have ever read. The body copy not only incorporates product information and a decent call to action, but it also explains, in detail, what the Microsoft Tag is and how a reader of the ad can obtain the Tag Reader app. But, as impressed as I am by the copy, I am that much less impressed with the scan resolve content and overall experience. Here's why.    

First, the copy states that by scanning the Tag, the reader of the ad will be able to get "exclusive content from Moen." Question: is a 1:38 second You Tube product commercial really all that "exclusive?" At any point in time, a consumer can go straight to You Tube, search for "Moen ioDigital" and see the exact same video. What's also interesting to note is that this particular video was uploaded to You Tube in May, 2009, so it's hardly new and/or exclusive.

Second, and this is where the company really blows it, at the end of the commercial there is absolutely no offer or incentive to learn more about this or other products, where to locate the product, or even to purchase the product. So, why are we here people? 

Third, the reader of the ad has no direct means by which he/she can contact the company about the advertised product, or any other for that matter. The ad does not list a corporate web address, an email address, a 1-800 phone number or a text code, and the scan resolve offers nothing as well.

Seriously, what's the objective here? What's ROI to be based on? And, more importantly, what's really in it for the consumer, the consumer that has spent the time and energy to scan the code?  

Although I very much like the ad's copy and direction, it's a shame the campaign quickly dissolves to very little, if anything at all, once the Tag is scanned.

2D Barcode Litmus Test: FAIL


  1. Seems to be the problem with YouTube hosting. Simple but the advertiser loses visibility and can't design, let alone control the secondary experience.

    Where was the ad placed? Is it a catalog?

  2. Bill: Thank you for writing. The ad was found in this month's issue of Real Simple magazine.