I went to visit my sister at The Scene Marketing Group last weekend, and she presented me with what I thought to be an ordinary magazine. She explained to me that it was the first issue of Beer West magazine. I find the beer industry interesting, so I thought this is cool but nothing special enough to entice me to blog about it, but here I am.
She explained further and said the publisher, Megan Flynn, dropped into the office and showed them the fascinating new technology behind this magazine.
Now most people would see “fascinating new technology” and “magazine” in the same sentence and think this guy is ridiculous. Well, I am here to tell you that one, I am ridiculous, and two, Beer West magazine does use fascinating new technology.
Thanks to a company called Digimarc, traditional media joined the technologically advanced era. Through the smart phone application, Digimarc Discover, viewers of the magazine can access online media triggered by invisible watermarks within an image in the magazine. The online content contains everything from quizzes, videos, trivia, interactive maps and games, beer recipes, and brewery websites. The new phone application brings interactivity to traditional style media.
What does this mean for public relations?
Public relations is all about the conversation. This new program allows paper, music and video media to access another level of interactive conversation to the consumers. Magazines are thriving in today’s media because magazines have successfully become a niche market. Every business could use Digimarc to advertise and create conversation through the niche market it belongs to. This new technology is also a great place to begin a branding campaign combining traditional media and social media.
This new application persuaded me to read the articles, and explore every picture with the Digimarc Discover logo on it to see where the application would take me. I filled out surveys, answered trivia, explored brewing companies websites and designed my very own beer coaster.
So, how does this work?
Well that is the best part. Digimarc Discover is so simple to use. An invisible watermark is inserted into the photo in the magazine. The phone application reads the watermark and takes you to the website connected with the watermark.
- Download the Digimarc Discover application on your iPhone or Android.
- Place phone approximately six inches above the image with the Digimarc logo on it.
- Wait for the phone to find the invisible watermark on the photo, and the Digimarc logo will appear on the screen. Tap it!
- Enjoy the interactive world that the Digimarc photo takes you to.
This brilliant technology is measurable, effective, and has enormous potential for future applications.
We are a society that thrives on interactive, fast-paced information. Now, traditional media have hopped on the bandwagon and are providing consumers with extra content in the forms of games, news, tips, videos and interviews on your smart phone!
I know it looks as if Digimarc and Beer West hired me, but I promise it is not true. I wrote this blog post because after discovering the “new toy” for magazines, I spent two hours reading and playing with the Digimarc Discover application.
Take a look for yourself and read Beer West’s inaugural issue through the Digimarc Discover technology. It is sure to impress you too!
Thank you for reading and feel free to comment!