In a new ad for Lexus, the brand promotes its sexy QR code technology that was created in collaboration with Sports Illustrated.
Mashable reports that when consumers line up their QR code readers on their smartphones with the ad, Sports Illustrated models from the swimsuit edition start moving in the video. The ad campaign is called “Blend Out” and is “the latest attempt to sex up the annual issue with digital bells and whistles,” says Todd Wasserman.
QR codes in ads that pop up as videos are nothing new. In 2010, Calvin Klein used them on billboards in New York and Los Angeles to promote its jeans, according to Mobile Marketer. They gave consumers a look at a video with models Lara Stone, A.J. Sid Ellisdon, Grayson Vaughan and Eric Anderson. In a print ad, Simply Zest reports that Volkswagen used a QR code that allowed consumers to experience what it was like to be in one of its cars. The list goes on.
As Kissmetrics points out, there are negatives to this technology. For example, it’s susceptible to spam and hacking, which can make consumers hesitant to pursue it. Not to mention, it requires an extra step, and a consumer must have the technology already in his or her phone.
At the beginning of 2012, AdAge reported that only five percent of consumers were using the codes. Kunur Patel writes that some consumers “who have tried the technology were dissuaded by codes that offer little useful information or simply redirect the user to the company’s website.”