Going Mobile

The reading this week discusses some of the developments in this increasingly mobile era. Apparently I’m not the only one glued to my iPhone either. According this Cisco article, by 2016 the number of mobile-connected devices will exceed the world’s population in 2012. WOW. Of course, the article also stated that the number of Android users exceeded the number of iPhone users, which I’m still a little bitter about being the Apple snob that I am. Sigh.

QR codes are a hotly debated issue on the topic. Although I’m likely to go a little softer on the issue after reading this article on how they are being used for charities, I just don’t like QR codes. The cause laid out in the article is, of course, a good one, but I don’t think as many people use QR codes as some marketers would like to think. It might just be me, but I am far more likely to Google something than go through the effort of getting out the QR scanner app. The only time I have ever scanned a QR code? When I’m testing the ones my students put on marketing materials. Sure, they are free, so putting them on your marketing materials isn’t going to cause harm, but I personally wouldn’t put them at the core of my strategy. Plus, they just kill a good design.

Do you scan QR codes? Have you ever had successful results from using them in a marketing strategy?

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8 Responses to Going Mobile

  1. Hate me some QR codes. Charity or no. It’s like Cruella Deville donating to a pet rescue.

  2. alanyskpl says:

    I personally never scanned a QR code but when I was working at SeaWorld, we used them for promotional purposes. For the launch of Cheetah Hunt, a QR code was made and placed on the building grounds of the coaster so visitors who are wondering what all the commotion was could scan the code and watch a video of what is to come. I personally think that QR codes could be very useful if more people utilized it, however, not many consumers seem to be interested in taking out their phones to scan these little squares.

    • Emily Davis says:

      I would have to think that SeaWorld was probably much smarter in their QR code strategy than some smaller companies I see around here. Linking to a video might be more incentive to a user than just a regular web page.

  3. I have scanned a QR code or two. Every year we go to Surf Expo in Orlando to see the upcoming year’s water sports products, and if you’ve ever been to one of these events, they are massive. Tons of vendors in a giant convention center is a lot to process. Maps are helpful, but cumbersome. Last year, the codes were placed throughout the center and, when scanned, a map appeared on your smartphone, with links to each of the vendors’ information and also their websites. It was incredibly helpful. If you were trying to promote a fundraising cause, giving people access to your information from their phones and perhaps options for donating immediately would be efficient. Often people are more emotionally attached when the are presented with a cause and means to donate immediately, but if they wait, by the time they get home, they are less likely to donate.

  4. Naseem F says:

    The article mentioning the role QR codes played in donations does encourage me to have a better view of QR codes. But to be honest, I don’t mind them at all. They are not very exactly design friendly, however, it’s far easier to scan something than type a link into a browser. At the same time, I wonder which one is more efficient in terms of time–Googling something or taking the time to do the scan? In any case, my only experience with QR codes was at a Gap last year. Since I no longer have a U.S. phone, I used my sister’s BlackBerry to scan the QR code in a fitting room. it resulted in a discount on my purchase, which is a good motivator to use the QR code. Here in the Middle East, I haven’t tried scanning a QR code (which to be honest I don’t see much), and I don’t even know that I have the app. However on the note of scanning, I do have an shopping app that let’s me scan bar codes–I use it periodically.

  5. Amanda says:

    The only The last time I remember using a QR code was at the Riverside Arts Market, a local bazaar sort of deal that takes place every week during the warmer months here in Jacksonville. I’d found this artist who made gorgeous tiles, and she had a QR code placed on flyers and banners throughout her booth to direct traffic to her web site. In that setting, where I was browsing and discovering new people and products, rather than running around trying to get things done, I think the QR code worked. Still, most of the time, if I see a QR code on something, I end up bypassing it in favor of taking a picture of a web site URL or something so that I can look up later, when I have time.

  6. I think QR codes are a cool way to make a print ad an interactive one in a setting where someone typically wouldn’t google something. They could be used as a call to action for certain circumstances. I have not, EVER, used a QR code though. I probably should if I’m going to vouch for their relevance though. I just see people other than myself using them and thinking they’re fun. As mentioned in other blogs, they have a few kinks to work on though before I think they’re very useful and I completely agree that they shouldn’t be a huge part of your marketing effort, nor on every ad.

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