The best PR campaign ever ? Decode Jay-Z with Bing

Best PR Campaign ever Bing + Jay Z

It’s not often that we stop to appreciate the creative work that public relations company do. When it comes to technology, PR companies play a pivotal role in developing the publicity around a product or service. Wether it’s working with creative types to realise a vision, or dealing with temperamental journalists to tap into their audience, its not the easiest job in the world. Far too often I see companies aim for the low hanging fruit.

As I write this post, yet another over-amplified, shouting add is on TV, treating potential customers like idiots. On that note, if you have a ‘sale’ every single week, that’s not a sale, its the price.

The holy grail for an PR company, must be to create something that people actually watch. Not once, but many times. Occasionally PR companies are successful. Possibly the best PR campaign I’ve ever seen is a co-creation from Bing and JayZ.

With JayZ launching his autobiography – Decode It, and Microsoft looking to grow Bing market share and increase relevance with a younger audience, it was a mutually beneficial arrangement. Every day for a month prior to the launch of the book’s release, they posted a page from the book in public across 13 major cities in the US, but didn’t stop there. This was a global campaign, so the pages were posted internationally as well.

Best PR Campaign ever Bing + Jay Z

The 320 pages were not simply thrown together randomly, but placed in well thought out locations that was represented in the content. These pages were found everywhere from building-sized billboards, to the bottom of a swimming pool, to the inside of custom Gucci jackets, even an entire Cadillac was wrapped in lyrics. With such a massive distribution of the branding message there needs to be a way to tie the message together. That was done by the common message attached to every page ‘DECODE JAY-Z with Bing.’

Clues to the page locations were released through Facebook, Twitter and radio, finding the pages became a game, powered by Bing. These pages and their locations were captured by mobile phones and contributed to the book, which was being assembled digitally as pieces were uncovered –

It’s a campaign that actually expects a little from the consumer, instead of treating them like idiots.

So how successful was this PR campaign ? Jay-Z’s Facebook followers grew by more than 1 million, Decode it reached the best sellers list.. and stayed there for 19 straight weeks. Bing was happy with major media coverage, and an 11.7% increase in visits.

The entire campaign landed an astonishing 1.1 Billion global impressions. Lesson complete. This is how marketing should be done.

More @

Posted in:
Jason Cartwright
Jason Cartwright
Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021

Leave a Reply


Must Read

Latest Reviews