It’s not unusual to find Playboy magazine pushing the boundaries. This time, working with creative agency, Y&R, the magazine is encouraging its readers’ to get their minds in the gutter. Literally. Playboy has sabotaged its own publication by running three centrefolds with the ‘naughty bits’ hidden in the gutter.
Editor Charl du Plessis explains just what the magazine is up to. “Playboy has launched a cheeky and self-deprecating campaign conceived by Y&R Cape Town that makes fun of the Achilles heel of all print publications – material that disappears into the spine of the magazine.
“In the case of this Playboy campaign, it so happens that the full spread nude model has her most critical assets cut off right in the spine. At first glance it appears to be a major publishing gremlin, until you read the pay-off line that simply states: ‘This would not happen online’ and offers readers a bunny-stye QR code to visit the full spread on-line without the spine creases.”
The thinking behind the campaign to drive readers to digital, not push them to print, has the growth of online subscriptions at is heart. Du Plessis says the magazine is “embracing the shift from 60 years of the finest print publication towards the exciting technologies of the digital publishing era, still in its infancy in South Africa”.
He believes the result is an innovative and entertaining blend of the best of the old and the new in content and reading experience. Publisher Chapel Lane Media says this campaign signals Playboy South Africa’s commitment towards the digital publishing era and to lead the pack in terms of payment models and other value-added subscription services that may deliver Playboy’s quality content to each reader’s platform of choice.
“This tech hype will also slow down as we already see. Innovations like tablets and smartphones disrupt by the decade, not by the year, and eventually it all comes back, for all of us in the industry, to what we consider to be Playboy’s real strength, namely quality content,” Du Plessis says.
“If content is the king, technology is the dashing prince courting the king’s daughter this season, but who may also eventually settle into the neighbouring palatial estate. We remain more concerned with good spelling and grammar than tech platforms. The specialists make that available to all publications and there is no competitive advantage there, only essential participation.”
Readers enticed to scan the QR Code will be able go online to enjoy the full picture in all its glory – and get a free three-month online subscription to Playboy.co.za at the same time.