Calvin Klein recently unveiled this giant QR code on Houston St. in NYC. The ad prompts passersby to scan the QR code from a mobile phone in order to unlock "uncensored" content.
While this could've been an excellent way to deliver rich multi-media content to its audience, Calvin Klein fails to deliver anything of real value. The QR code links to a predictable, black and white video (see below) of disaffected, nubile twenty-somethings making out half-clothed in urban landscapes. Not exactly groundbreaking or memorable for this genre, nor is there anything about unlocking the video that engages people or makes them feel special or valued.
This is classic tactics in search of a strategy, where someone thought it would be "really innovative" to use a QR code. Sadly, it seems there was very little thought given to what type of content would be right for this environment. The QR code was the big idea rather than the appropriate delivery mechanism for a bigger idea.
Sorry Calvin, it's not enough just to use new technology; if you want to score points you must also use new technology well.