“I love the idea of QR Codes, except their implementation is terrible.”
This is the assessment of Scott Stratten, super-geek, keynote speaker, and author whose hilariously funny discussions of technology and marketing were brought to my attention by Chuck Gehman, who posted a link to one of his videos in the comments section (thanks, Chuck!).
(If you didn’t watch the video on how not to use QR Codes, watch it here.)
It’s true. QR Codes are great tools for marketers, but they can use them in really dumb ways. Here are 9 illustrations given by Stratten on how marketers should not use QR Codes:
- In airplane magazines where cellphone service is not allowed
- On billboards on the side of the freeway (‘Motion plus distance does not equal good scanning!”)
- Taking people to a video that says, “Not playable on a mobile device.”
- On banners pulled by airplanes on the beach. (“Come back here! I want to scan your nonfunctioning code!”)
- In emails. (“The email comes here [front of phone]. The camera . . . is here [back of the phone].”)
- Placing them on websites where, when scanned, they take the viewer back to the website.
- On posters placed behind permanently installed steel bars at the mall.
- On mall doors that open when you stand in front of them to scan them.
- On pet tags. (“If you see a lost pet, you are supposed to stop what you are doing, grab it by the neck, and hold it down until you can focus your phone. Have you ever tried to hold down a CAT???”)
Concludes Stratten: “All I’m asking is for you to think before you do. It sounds like a drug prevention message, but it’s applicable to QR Codes.”
That is an interesting concept that would go a long way toward resolving the “Nobody uses QR Codes” issue we hear discussed so much. Use them badly and people will stop using them. The problem isn’t QR Codes. It’s the lack of thought behind them.
Let’s think before we do!