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Barnes & Noble

Spoilers Set You Free

The pressure to read the “classics” prevents people from reading anything at all. Barnes & Noble wants to set you free–by spoiling all the classic books you’ve been deluding yourself you’ll someday get to. Now that you can toss what’s spoiled, pick up something fresh at Barnes & Noble.


This project was made as spec work.

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1. Spoiled Stories

To bring the campaign into the digital world, Barnes & Noble will spoil the classics on its Instagram stories. Now that those books have “gone bad,” followers can click the link for some fresh finds.

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2. Gotcha Journalism

To spoil classic books in other, unexpected ways, Barnes & Noble will run ads in several publications that will look and feel like the content they are adjacent to. Upon further inspection, however, readers will see that the headline is actually ruining the ending of a classic book.

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3. Walking Spoilers

Barnes & Noble will release merch that are covered in spoilers. So no matter where people go, they’re ruining the ending for someone.

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4. Sparknoble

If reading Sparknotes is still too much work, listen up. Sparknotes is partnering with Barnes & Noble to create a super-short, spoiler-filled podcast, giving away the major plot points in three minutes or less.  

5. Entitled to Compensation

Barnes & Noble will offer a “settlement” to those who have been unjustly spoiled by its ad campaign. If people bring in and donate one of the classic books that B&N spoiled, they will receive half-off any modern book.

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6. Spoiled Section

Spoiled books that are brought in by customers, as well as any existing inventory, will be housed in the “Spoiled Section”—a new and used area for classic titles. 

Art Direction: me

Copywriting: Tilden Lincoln

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