Kanye Takes a Page Out of Jay-Z’s Book for “New Slaves” PR Stunt

Kanye Takes a Page Out of Jay-Z’s Book for “New Slaves” PR Stunt

kanye west debuts new slaves on 66 buildings
Kanye West debuts new music on the facade of a building.

Kanye West sure knows how to get the people going.

Last Friday, after releasing the song “New Slaves” by projecting a video display onto buildings in 66 different locations around the world, the sometimes-controversial artist reclaimed his genius title and received kudos across the blogosphere for always moving the culture forward.

And while this may have been a fresh and creative way to debut music given the stale tactics employed by some record labels, the concept isn’t exactly new.

In fact, Jay-Z actually employed a similar strategy in 2010 during the launch campaign for his autobiographical book Decoded, where he worked with Droga5 and Bing to stage a global scavenger hunt.*

The agency hid all 320 pages of the book (mostly blown-up versions) in outdoor spots in 13 cities, in locations that related in some way to the text on each page—at the bottom of a pool in Miami, on cheeseburger wrappers in New York, on clothing racks, in subways, on rooftops, on traditional billboards, in the lining of a leather jacket, on the felt of a pool table, etc. The people who found the pages first, and checked them in on a Bing-sponsored website, got a chance at two tickets to any and all Jay-Z concerts for life. [Adweek]

Here are some photos from the Decoded campaign:

Source: AdWeek
Source: AdWeek
Source: AdWeek
Source: AdWeek

If you’re ready for the next scavenger hunt, Kanye just updated the map over on KanyeWest.com so he may have something else in store for us soon.

*Droga5 received an Outdoor Grand Prix advertising award for creating and executing the global scavenger hunt for Jay-Z’s Decoded book launch. 

Kanye West Photo: NPR


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