It happened again. I wanted a QR Code and it wasn’t there.
It was a promotional poster for a band playing at a local hangout this weekend. I had never heard of the band, and there was nothing on the poster indicating what type of music they played. Rock? Pop? Oldies? Bluegrass? Folk? Unless I already knew the band (which I didn’t), there was no way to tell.
Sure, I could have looked them up on my phone. I could have gone to YouTube, typed in their name, and looked to see if there were any videos posted. But I just wasn’t that interested.
What if there had been a QR Code on the poster that took me to a video from one of their local jams? I wasn’t interested enough to do all that typing, but just out of curiosity I might have taken the few moments to scan a code. If it had been music I’m interested in — blues, newgrass — I would have been hooked. If I couldn’t go this weekend, I might have bought one of their CDs instead. I got hooked on Humming House that way.
As it was, by the time I walked out the door of the store, I’d already forgotten the name of the band.
This poster was most likely produced at one of the local copy shops. How much extra effort would it have taken for the customer service person to have suggested adding a QR Code? If the layout was clean enough, it could have been generated and added in right then and there. The band member could have provided a URL to a YouTube video (which, considering the venue, they certainly have), the QR Code could have been generated at the desk, the file opened, and the code dropped into the corner.
That one simple question could have had a significant impact on the band’s revenues in terms of attendance and potentially CD sales. Great for the band and great for the print shop. Imagine the loyalty that would have created! Plus next time members of the band are talking about promotion with others in the arts and music community, guess who they’re going to recommend to do the printing? Instead, it was an opportunity wasted.
This is why I just don’t get it when people talk about QR Codes being a waste of time. Of course they’re a waste of time if they are used wrong. But a tremendous opportunity if used right.