Are QR Codes Good for Marketing?

Posted: April 14, 2011 by Thos003 in Marketing
Tags: , , , , , ,

QR codes are super cool if you are an uber geek!

Google Favorite Places QR code

There is an arguments against QR codes. Not everyone knows what to do with them still. Some of the QR code scanners suck, or maybe it’s just the crummy iPhone 3 camera. People also find it more difficult to fumble through their apps looking for that scanner that they rarely use. It’s almost easier to just write in a url.. and people know where to put that. So has the honeymoon ended?

QR Code Marketing Advantages

Pest Control recieves Favorite Place award

See boss this is cool!

1- Tracking.

2- Tracking.

3- Tracking.

What a marketer loves about QR codes is that it can track what offline ad is generating online visitors. Plan and simple, QR codes are best for tracking offline to online marketing. Read more about QR-Codes offline to Online. There was also a romantic flare pulled off by Klein in concealing their message behind a QR code to “Get it uncensored!”. But that gimmick will only last so long… except that I am still talking about it, so props for the originality.

And, yes, there is some very creative design work that can go into QR codes. Still love the Vampire QR code produced for the show TRUE BLOOD. But, other then myself, who really appreciates this advertising? I couldn’t even remember the show! I always refer to it as the “Vampire QR Code”. Not really a stellar branding tactic.

QR Code = Get More Info Here

There is some additional value to “Get More Info Here”. It may even seem to be an easier call to action than visit us at But that’s just it, is it an easier call to action? Are people more likely to scan a QR code than remember a URL? The plus side to a URL is that it is memorable. The down side to using just a QR code is that if they don’t scan it “NOW” then they may never visit your site and get more info.  I don’t have the answer, I am simply saying, know the limitations of your ads. Know your audience. And test which call to action works.

The Future of QR-Code Marketing

Does QR code marketing have a future? Yes, Google did pull the plug on their QR code, but don’t flush the QR codes out with the crap. Wayne,, makes some good points, like “Google did not invent the QR Code”. But more importantly, it’s not how anybody else uses it, it’s how you use it! If it works for you, then keep it going. I don’t believe QR codes make great ads. I do believe that a well placed call to action, be it a QR Code or a URL, or BOTH, can be a key element in a good ad.  Do what works for you. I believe QR codes, and even Microsoft’s Tag, have their place in marketing and will still be useful in the future.

  1. People try to fit qr codes into places they shouldn’t go. A local startup in Memphis was bound and determined to use qr codes to do loyalty program tracking. (which is already well done by several companies). Initially they planned to make the users convert their POS system to print a unique qr code. They changed that to giving them a unique qr code. (thus duplicating another startup).

    QR codes may have a point but I think you’re latching onto a key concept here which is start with a problem and solve it with qr codes if possible not just throw qr codes around.

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