Why Is There a Maze On This Postcard?

Why Is There a Maze On This Postcard?

QR codes are slowly starting to pop up in more places than before. These little codes (that look like weird mazes) are wonderful for marketers because they can a) be targeted b) include specialized and cool content and c) be tracked. What's not to love?

Unfortunately, there are a few challenges, both for the user and the marketer.

1) Education

People need to be educated on what these codes are and how they work. In other words, who is going to teach Mom and Dad about QR codes?

2) Usage

Most phones don't come with QR readers. This leaves the user to consciously download a QR reader application _before_ they scan the code. Their attention may drift away to a Tweet before they finish downloading the app! This makes the poor QR code an afterthought. Not to mention, there are many QR reader apps to choose from. Which one is best?

3) Content

This is a tough one for marketers. We all know that our attention spans are becoming smaller and smaller. Linking a QR code to a 5 minute video on how your widget is made? That's not going to fly. Linking to a landing page? Please make it mobile friendly. Remember, the user is not checking out the QR code from their desktop

So with these challenges it's easy to see why QR codes haven't caught fire in the US, although they have in Japan where you can find them almost everywhere.

Will QR "make it" in the US or will another alternative come along? If you've used a QR code during a marketing campaign, feel free to share your stories. We'd love to hear from you. 

Image: Clever Cupcakes, "Twestival Montreal Cupcakes", Via Flickr Creative Commons Attribution

Posted by Eric Garza on 03/11 at 08:30 AM in Technology

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