Jay-Z's Memoir Gets the Big Creative Ad Campaign

Did you all hear about Jay-Z's upcoming memoir? As a bookish-type working in the ad industry, the Big Creative campaign behind the book has hit all my radars and appeared on at least 50% of the blogs I currently follow. It seems that Droga5, an independent ad agency out of New York, has devised a clever, interactive campaign for fans, involving large reproductions of the book's pages appearing in various locales discussed throughout the book. The enlarged places will loom on standard advertising mediums - like billboards, bus stops, and building sides - as well as less conventional spots, like the bottom of a hotel pool or the felt of pool tables in a local pool hall.

The best part is that these pages are all unannounced, and form a kind of scavenger hunt for those eager-beaver readers looking to participate (and the winner gets tickets to see Jay-Z and Coldplay in concert).

There's something wonderfully refreshing about a new kind of ad campaign for the publishing industry - for all our talks about the need to change and to breathe new life into the world of printed pages, most publishing ads (for those publishers that still take the time and money to even run print ads) look the same, featuring the cover of the book, maybe an author head shot, and a series of blurbs from recognized authors and critics praising the book as "the best of its genre" or "my favorite book of the year." The ads amount to little more than a re-organization of the elements on a book's jacket and (in this humble book-loving advertiser's opinion) do precious little to make a book stand out from the dozens of other titles offered for sale each month.

But this? This is different. This is new. This is refreshing, and this turns heads. Decoded stands out from the crowd... even if it is yet another celebrity biography/behind-the-scenes (or in this case, lyrics) kind of book.


  1. I completely agree. I couldn't be happier to see the publishing industry trying new things. Hopefully other imprints will take notice and start rethinking their own campaigns.

  2. I think this is a wonderful campaign! I agree that it's too bad it's just for a celebrity bio but this sounds fantastic and way more eye catching than the typical book ads.


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