01 Apr QR Codes and Real-time Marketing

We saw that many brands tried to culture jack the Oscars with real-time tweets as part of their campaigns. But are they doing it right? Have we not learned anything from the use of QR codes?

Take QR codes in magazine ads – their only role in that circumstance is as a URL replacement. But they aren’t really useful, as most people don’t have a problem with URL in a magazine, especially if they’re reading it on a smart device. Similarly, it doesn’t really make sense to have canned tweets from brands hoping to surf the real-time wave by solely regurgitating known information.

Where QR codes make sense, however, is when they unlock information that adds to an environment.

In this way, QR codes ARE real-time (or should be). As long as they make a scenario better:  Realtors that instantly distribute house specs via QR code (instead of paper flyers) are using the technology in a way that improves, rather than annoys.

You should be thinking about real-time marketing the same way.

Brands should only participate in real-time if they can show their human side to an event that is happening in that moment or add information in a way that is not available.

Uncanned, unique commentary and bits of relevant information lead you to a real-time marketing effort works. If you’re not doing it right you are taking all the life and spontaneity out of culture jacking and it becomes all about the media, and not about the social.

Sibet B Freides