Inception Blu-Ray+DVD Promoted using SnapTag

Earlier in the month, the movie “Inception” came out on Blu-Ray + DVD and, to promote the event, Warner Bros. ran a multi-channel advertising campaign, which featured a lesser known mobile response code/tag called SnapTag.*

Inception Snap Tag

For a SnapTag to work, the reader of the advertisement is instructed to take a picture of the SnapTag symbol with their mobile phone (can be read by smartphones or feature phones), and either email or text the image to the respective email address or text code, which is provided in the symbol itself (see copy in the border in the image below). A few seconds after the image is sent, an email comes back to the reader providing additional information and or content. If this mobile response code/tag methodology sounds familiar it’s because JAGTAG works much the same way.

Inception Snap Tag

From a strategic marketing perspective, the “Inception” campaign was very well thought out and executed. In the movie, there is reference to five different dream levels, one going deeper than the next, and the advertising campaign played off this from one week to the next. Each week throughout the campaign, a different dream level was reached and, with it, new content was offered. Content such as a special ring tone, a video interview with the director, exclusive sneak peeks, etc. Overall, the idea is that with each new offering of special and valuable content, from one week to the next, the consumer or fan of the movie will move that much further down the purchase decision path and hopefully buy the Blu-Ray+DVD.

What I also like about this campaign is how Warner Bros. made use of multiple advertising channels, which included magazine, billboard and television. Just as with traditional campaigns (i.e., non-mobile response code/tag campaigns), mobile response code/tag-based campaigns should be integrated across channels/mediums, as much as possible and where it makes the most sense. There is no reason to limit exposure and limit the mobile response code/tag experience. One tactic I will question, however, is the use of television. To me, this just does not make much sense unless you give enough forewarning to the viewing audience that a mobile response code/tag will appear on screen, and how and when this gets done could be questionable and or problematic.

Lastly, I will say that the advertising creative was well done, as the SnapTags were positioned and sized well. And, by nature of how SnapTags work off of image recognition, it made sense to use a prop from the movie as the image in the code. Of course, for those who did not see the movie, the spinning top would mean very little, but for the movie’s true fans, the campaign’s real target audience, they will get it.

2D Barcode Litmus Test: PASS

*The term “mobile response code/tag” is meant to be all inclusive, which includes: all binary based codes (e.g., QR Code, etc.),  as well as all image recognition codes (i.e., JAGTAG, SnapTag, etc.).

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4 thoughts on “Inception Blu-Ray+DVD Promoted using SnapTag

  1. This is an FYI to a 2D Code expert from a 2D code expert. JagTags and SnapTags are NOT 2D codes. 2D codes can be read with 2D code readers (my recommendation for all mobile campaigns, along with an SMS interaction to make sure those without smartphones can participate). By calling them 2D codes, you will confuse the consumer so that they think that they can read them with their 2D reader. JagTags and SnapTags are both image recognition technologies that require a picture to be taken and MMS'ed to the shortcode if you have ATT or Verizon, but must be emailed if you don't have those service providers. If you don't take a clear picture, you will be waiting without response, and must go through the whole process again. There will be a day very soon that you will be able to use an app for the image recognition somewhat like GoogleGoggles, but the technology is still premature.

    I am not saying that the technology doesn't have advantages or shouldn't be used…I just don't recommend them.

    In regards to this campaign, I agree that it was well done, I would have just recommended a different Consumer Response Tag technology.

  2. Emily: Thank you for the comment. In the moment, Scott's comment made sense, so I edited the article and made use of the term “mobile response code/tag.” Thinking about it further, I believe it makes more sense for any and all code symbols that are developed to transport consumers from the print/physical world to the digital world to be known as 2D barcodes.

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