BoSacks Speaks Out: I believe that I am as red blooded as the next man, well maybe more than some and less than some others, and I, too, wouldn’t mind talking to and standing next to the model Brooklyn Decker. That is what this article is about – a campaign by Esquire magazine to send all red blooded Esquire readers all over cities looking for babes and magazine logos.
I think the stunt is pretty cool and I am sure that it will garner plenty of industry publicity. For that purpose it will most likely perform very well for the magazine.But it brings up a subject I have been pondering for quite some time. I have been to several meetings lately where publishers have suggested that PRLS and CR Codes will help save the print publishing business. I’m not so sure that is entirely accurate. Sure we should participate in the revolution of codes and offer any kind of dynamic interaction we can muster, but I am resistant to the idea that sending people away from the printed page to some cell phone activity or to the web is actually a good idea in the long term for printed magazines. I think I would rather prove the vitality of the printed page by spending the same money on stellar editorials or totally compelling writing.
At the end of the day a printed magazine should stand on its feet and proudly be what it is – a damn good read. All the other stuff is bluster, smoke and mirrors. If your magazine is a digital magazine, have at it and be all that you and the digital world can be. If it is instead a traditional magazine, than you to should be all that you can be. To me that would be accomplished by having the most addictive content possible. Sending your readers away from the printed page seems to me to be counterproductive to the long term survival of the printed product.
This concept and reluctance of mine not to send the readers away from the page is still under development. I would like to hear from my readers. What do you think? Is it a good idea? If it is, please tell me why.
[And since you know you cannot see yourself,
so well as by reflection, I, your glass,
will modestly discover to yourself,
that of yourself which you yet know not of. - William Shakespeare]
Esquire AR Cover Lets Readers Interact with Brooklyn Decker
Esquire has dressed up its February issue with augmented reality and geo-tagging technology to create several interactive adventures for its readers.
For starters, the magazine’s cover model, Brooklyn Decker, can be “found” in over 700 Barnes & Noble stores across the country. Esquire partnered with Barnes & Noble and AR platform provider GoldRun to create the campaign, which prompts readers to locate, interact with, and take pictures alongside the beautiful model in any Barnes & Noble store. Once users download the free GoldRun app onto their GPS enabled iPhones
and hold up the device within 50 yards of that store’s magazine area, they can view Brooklyn – dubbed by the magazine as one of the sexiest women in the world – on their screen as though she were actually present in their surrounding environment.
Esquire’s Logo Letters
In another campaign in the same issue, readers can track down the letters of the Esquire logo (as re-imagined by New York City-based creative studio Tronic) in one of several cities. GoldRun has assigned specific latitudes and longitudes to the seven letters that make up the Esquire logo in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston, Washington DC, Chicago, and Philadelphia.
Users can use the GoldRun app on their iPhones to locate and take pictures of the letters near or around seven iconic landmark locations in each city. Readers can take photos of themselves interacting with the letters at locations ranging from the Hollywood sign in Los Angeles to the Empire State Building New York City.
This is not the first tech-oriented cover concept Esquire has run: in October 2008, in celebration of its 75th anniversary, Esquire issued a limited-edition electronic-ink cover proclaiming “The 21st Century Begins Now” where words and images on the cover moved and changed.
In February 2009, Esquire created a peel-open trapdoor on the cover that revealed a mini table of contents.
The May 2009 issue had a perforated “mix-and-match” series of consecutive covers featuring George Clooney, Obama and Justin Timberlake that allowed readers to create their own cover composed of different parts of each man’s face.
And in December 2009, it teamed with The Barbarian Group to create an interactive augmented reality issue that caused the magazine’s pages, and cover subject Robert Downey Jr., to come to life.