08 Mar Using QR Codes to Engage

QR codes seem quick and easy – they’re all about convenience. But when you think about it, in order to take advantage of them, they require people to own a smart phone, have a QR reader downloaded and installed, and have their phone handy with the app open and ready to scan at any given time.

Whew! It’s a lot more complicated than it appears.

Worse yet, many companies are using them to convey data that could be just as easily delivered in another (more convenient) format. They are popularly replacing URLs in common advertising.

Are people really ready to replace URLs? When done correctly, all they require is your memory, not a smart phone, data plan, or special app.

What should they be used for?

QR codes are most effective when they unlock information, not lead users to a final destination. Especially one they can call up on their mobile browser! Is there an immediate payoff for your users’ efforts to take out their phone, open the app, point, scan, wait for the code to register, and find out what’s next?

Do you have a special list of products or services that continually get updated? Do you run promotions that change frequently? How about location-based campaigns? These are perfect candidates for your QR adventures!

Make sure your information is formatted for mobile, and again, that it’s relevant for your user immediately. If you’re trying to get people to your website, or to opt in to your list with no timely reward, a QR code is not the best solution. Just like when Twitter first hit the scene, don’t do it to be with the “in” social networking crowd – you have to have a solid plan to engage your audience.

Sibet B Freides