Scanning a QR Code One Year Later

By | April 30, 2013

This is one of the reasons I love QR Codes. I’ve had the QR Code for this landing page on my kitchen cabinet for a year. It was formerly stuck to a watermelon I bought in 2012. I scanned the code in the supermarket, found that it linked to some really interesting ways to cook watermelons, and determined that I would pluck it from the rind and keep it. IMG_0141-2

I’m glad I did, because one year — and a new phone — later, it was there when I needed it.  Still works, too.

One of the enduring values of print is that people keep printed promotions longer than they do any other medium. Clips, postcards, and catalogs get stacked in piles, pinned to bulletin boards, and taped to refrigerators. One of my favorite case studies came from a personalized, oversized postcard my parents taped to the doorway to the kitchen.

QR Codes have the same enduring value. Once you’ve scanned the code, the landing page to which the code points stays in the phone’s history until you remove it. There are other codes I scanned that I wish I still had in my history, such as folk bands and micro-breweries whose names I’ve long since forgotten, but I’d still like to revisit some day.

The key is do create value that people actually want to return to. That’s what most marketers fail to do, and it’s why QR Codes have become the butt of marketing jokes and the subject of articles such as The Business Insider’s “The Greatest QR Fails of All Time.”

This QR Code from Nature’s Pantry was done well. It was placed in the right place, in front of the right audience, and took me to information of value to me. It offered such value that I went back to it one year later.

If this had been a postcard, I would have lost it. If it had been an email, it would be down around email #15,5654 in my inbox. But because it’s in my phone, it’s there indefinitely until I upgrade my phone again someday.

QR Codes aren’t a gimmick.  They just need to point to something of value.  It’s such a simple concept that I think it gets lost sometimes.

Share this post


7 thoughts on “Scanning a QR Code One Year Later

  1. Lisa

    I’d love to know who created the QR code for Natures Pantry. Can you email me with that information? Thanks! I love reading your articles.

  2. Heidi Tolliver-Walker Post author

    Nice! I vote for one on the breadmaker . . . so I don’t have to look up the bread recipes anymore. It would also allow the manufacturer to add new recipes on a regular basis so that even previous customers could continue to take advantage of them. Same code, just updated landing page. How about adding special offers for other products? Upsell and cross sells? Co-promotions with other food manufacturers whose products might be featured in the recipes? The opportunities are endless . . . and the code is right in front of the consumer at all times. Right on the product, it never gets lost, thrown out, or expires.

  3. Heidi Tolliver-Walker Post author

    Thanks, Lisa! I don’t know who created the code or the mobile landing page. The code itself is nothing remarkable (and by the looks of it could easily have been created by any free online generator), although it is scannable at about 1/2″ in size. I had no trouble at all.

  4. Lisa

    Thank you, Heidi! I wondered if it was a generic QR code or if it was something more involved. Keep these great articles coming!

  5. Nancy Thich

    Good points. When I first saw QR Codes on my bananas, I thought it deserved a spot on but after reading this article, it makes sense. Especially, if what you find after the QR Codes are some great banana recipes!

    Moral of the story: Don’t doubt stickers.

    Thanks for the great article.

Comments are closed.