The QR code: A marketer’s dream come true.
Unless you have been living under a rock, you’ve been seeing a lot of small squares, often black and white, 2D barcodes that advertisers seem to be placing on anything and everything. And by everything, I mean everything — from traditional media like print ads to guerilla marketing and even condoms. Quick Response codes, more commonly known as QR codes, a useful tool for marketers to pass on tons more information than is typically digestible in a simple direct mailer or one page ad. They are a marketer’s dream come true. Alas, the days of hoping the target audience remembers a URL are over. All they need to do is whip out their smartphone, which seems to be affixed to their hand anyway, point and scan!
While everything you need to know about a given product or service is only a scan away, the first key to successfully using QR codes starts with giving the viewer something worth scanning. The second is to give them the ability to actually scan the code. Recently I’ve come across some crazy places that marketers have been placing QR codes and I have to wonder, are they just using them because it’s the cool thing to do? Based on these examples, I’d have to say yes.
Unless Spiderman is in town, I’m guessing this QR code will get zero scans.
Please tell me their target audience is seagulls.
Scan at your own risk.
And while there are some pretty awful places to put QR codes, when they are placed appropriately, there are surprisingly a lot of creative ways to utilize them. Take a look at these few examples that really caught my eye.
Mickey, Donald and my personal favorite, Stitch!
Note to self for next can castle food drive contest.
Must confess, I almost ate my computer when I saw this gem.
Of course, I had to include an example from the Melamed Riley archives. The creative team came up with this QR code for a print ad when teasing one of our client’s newest products, the Verifi bed bug detector. This code is made up of hundreds of tiny hotel rooms, hospital rooms, bedrooms and a few teeny-tiny bed bugs. Can you find them all? There are three.