SURGEON GENERAL’S WARNING: QR Codes Cause Frustration, Application Confusion, Poor Scalability, Creative Asset Damage, And May Complicate Media Campaigns.
QR codes might be right for you if:
- Your target mobile marketing audience understands that there are many different QR code applications and they know how to get the correct app.
- You don’t mind having multiple QR code apps on their phone and you’re among the most savvy mobile marketing gurus out there. That way, you can safely use a QR code to engage that person (but forget about the other 95% of smartphone users that don’t understand that they need the correct app). Yes, if you’re in the mobile marketing industry you’ll figure it out. Everyone else. . . probably not.
- You’d rather have your target audience taking pictures or scans of the black & white code (vs. taking pictures of your logo, your product packaging, your celebrity brand endorsers or showing off the value of your brand through user-engaged images and videos). So much for transmedia and driving value across all your creative.
- You believe that regular people in the United States already fully (or even marginally, at best) understand what to do with a QR code, and therefore you’d be crazy not to hop on the Pony Express to QRville USA (Population: 660).
- You explicitly want to send the message that your brand is for highly tech-oriented people who don’t mind spending some time figuring out the nuances of how to use the damn thing.
- You have a creative department that doesn’t mind using half the advertisement explaining how to use QR codes.
- Your client doesn’t mind creating unnecessary advertising assets vs. leveraging existing brand assets. Again, you’d be against the emerging transmedia lifestyle approach to brand marketing.
- You don’t mind telling your client to do less with more money. Specifically, less reach with the more money it’s going to cost to attempt to educate people.
QR codes might be a BAD solution for you if:
- You value reach and scalability in mobile marketing campaigns.
- You require ease of use – like sending a picture-text (something that happens billions of times every month).
- You like the idea of using image recognition on your brand logo and art work to help drive brand loyalty.
- You like the idea of allowing / encouraging user generated action shots that showcase the value of your brand, yet still provide a direct-response mobile marketing mechanism.
- You understand that the fractured wireless carrier environment in the United States and Europe is a major reason why a standard QR code system has not been implemented – whereas in Japan and South Korea it’s not really an issue.
- You want mobile marketing engagement that is inherently viral and social.
- You’ve traveled to Japan, South Korea, and of course, Main St. USA, and you understand that all mobile advertising markets are not the same.
Very truly yours,
P.S. – if you’d like to learn more about QR Codes vs. Image Recognition and/or need help with your mobile marketing brand campaigns, contact Pongr. We’ll either help you get started using Pongr or connect you to one of our trusted advertising partners.
Pongr designs and develops state-of-the-art image recognition technology that is used by leading brands for their iPhone, Android and picture-texting applications of mobile marketing.