The realtors I shoot for are a savvy lot and work hard to keep their listings in the forefront of technology. More than one or two of them have asked me about QR codes or asked to have them included on their flyers.
I have been lukewarm about QR codes. I personally find them intrusive. I just don’t think someone needs to be able to track my movement or desires. But if you ask me to use them on your material – I will.
I follow blogger Adam Singer and he has just published his view about QR codes. Evidently McDonald’s has started using QR’s to supply nutritional content on their food bags. This is what Adam had to say about them in his blog The Future Buzz, a Blog Covering Digital Marketing trends and ideas:
Why McDonald’s Use Of QR Codes To Find Nutritional Info Is Brilliant
There’s a whole bunch of discussion this week about McDonald’s adopting QR codes on their bags for customers to scan in order to access nutritional information. And judging from the reactions in comments and on Twitter, many marketers can’t figure out why.
People understandably don’t get this move because, well, no one uses QR codes. They were a terrible idea initially and most brands have realized this and dropped them. A short URL is far, far easier. You don’t need to install anything, they’re universally understood, readable from far distance, etc. Short URLs are superior to QR codes in all ways. The only people benefiting by their use are the companies who stand to profit by selling QR code related technologies or services, not consumers.
And this is exactly why it is brilliant for McDonald’s to use them. Do you think they really want users to see nutritional information? Of course they don’t, or they’d have put it in restaurants prior to having legal reasons to do so. If they wanted people to check out this information, they’d use a short URL. Anyway, do you think that McDonald’s core demographic is part of the 5% of Americans who actually have scanned a QR code? Of course not.
PS: it’s also brilliant for them to do this because they received a wave of press for this.
Yet someone named Roger disagreed enough to send Singer this comment:
The 5% figure you quote is over a year old, it’s now running at 19% (60 million people).
If short URLs in ads are superior why are they so rare compared with QR Codes?
No one makes money from QR Codes they are open source. The cost to McDonald’s is as close to zero dollars as you can get.
You say ‘most brands have dropped QR Codes’ which may be true on your planet but not here on Earth.
If you don’t like QR Codes it may be better to just say so rather than try to back it up with specious arguments.
When Singer asked for a link to stand by Roger quoting 19%, Singer got a short url back: http://bit.ly/10wVEnc
This short url took me to something written by a guy named Roger toting 15% (not 19%). Roger also says only 10% is the correct figure for users reading a QR on a poster.
15% Of People Have Used A QR Code
By Roger ⋅ January 15, 2013 http://bit.ly/10wVEnc
Announced today a Pitney Bowes survey into current levels of QR Code usage across Europe and the U.S. has produced some interesting findings. The survey of 2,000 consumers in the US and 1,000 in France, Germany, the UK respectively shows that on average, across US, UK, France and Germany 15% of people have used a QR code.
I guess I’d be one of Roger’s/Piney Bowes 15% since I’ve used a QR once or twice (from someones smart phone – not my own). That satisfied my curiosity, but this really does not make me a user.
I am still thinking of QR’s in the same way Adam Singer presented them. How about you?