The over-use of QR codes has become something of a running joke around our office. We have seen them on TV commercials (we’re still trying to figure out how anyone has enough time to launch an app and scan a code that only appears on-screen for a few seconds) business cards that have no information other than a logo and a QR code (which give the prospect no incentive or context to encourage them to learn more), mattresses tags with a QR code and no price (which creates a higher barrier to entry for customers), and the best of all – QR codes that do not work at all (which nearly guarantee a prospect will not make a second attempt).
So, I have been asking around: How many times have you scanned a QR code from a TV ad? Do you prefer to receive a business card with a QR code, or does that trendy boxed code become a barrier to sales conversions? Not surprisingly, the results of my survey – mostly conducted on friends over a good glass of wine – indicate that many organizations might be overusing QR codes. Perhaps this happens simply because they are currently “cool” and in-vogue, and businesses want to capitalize on a growing trend.
I certainly can’t fault an organization for trying to stay on top of emerging technology. But it is important to consider context and effectiveness before you launch any initiative. Today’s world is filled with wonderful technology, and these tools can truly shine when used appropriately. “Cool” only yields profit if it provides a useful solution. QR codes, when leveraged correctly, provide prospects with easy access to valuable information that saves them time. They should never be used as a less-convenient replacement for solutions that are already effective. That isn’t to say that you shouldn’t have a QR code on your business card, though – it just shouldn’t be used to conceal your contact information.
My point is that businesses should not make their prospects work hard to get the information needed, but rather make it as easy as possible to help them increase conversion rates – it seems logical, doesn’t it?
Cíntia Miranda is the president of Pulse Marketing Agency. Learn more about her work at www.pulsemarketingagency.com.