Jay-Z’s ‘Decoded’ Book Uses Scavenger Hunt Marketing

By Paul Cantor

Get ready to decode Jay-Z, literally.

Today (October 18th), an online and real-world scavenger hunt begins in New York and other locales mentioned in the lyric book/memoir “Decoded.” It’s part of a unique advertising campaign created by New York ad agency Droga5.

The way it works is, entire pages of the book will be reprinted on traditional advertising spaces like billboards, but they’ll also appear in rare, hard to find spots like the bottom of a hotel swimming pool, the lining of jackets in a store window, the felt of pool tables in a pool hall and plates in a restaurant, among others. They’ll continue to pop up in New York, Los Angeles, Miami, New Orleans and London until the book is released on November 16.

The scavenger hunt takes place both in the real world and online.

On the web, the home base is Bing.com/Jay-Z. There, a map appears, and users are prompted to enter answers to a series of clue-like statements, each answer drawing the user closer to revealing the location of the printed lyrics. Once discovered, users can stake their claim. In the real world, users can send a text message that includes a code printed on the page to announce they’ve discovered the lyrics. The first scavengers to discover where the pages are printed become eligible to win a signed copy of “Decoded” and the grand prize, a trip to see Jay-Z and Coldplay in concert in Las Vegas on New Year’s Eve.

Are you ready for the scavenger hunt? Tweet us at @MTVRapFix or tell us in a comment below!