People love to use the “new thing” as much as possible. One of the trends that is still considered new, even though it has been around for a while, are QR codes.
QR stands for Quick Response and click if you want to learn more about the history of QR codes, otherwise stay here and learn how to use them and more importantly how NOT to use them!
Let’s look at this technology out-of-order and start with the BAD. There are many ways to use QR Codes incorrectly and it seems that everyone has those figured out. Some of these misuses are seen in all industries and some can get specific.
1) The first mistake is that people use QR Codes on a screen. We have posted one here to show you what a QR Code looks like. How many of you decided to pick up your phone and scan the screen? If you already have people on your website, in an email or in general on the computer, just give them the link they need!
2)The second place we see people using QR Codes when they shouldn’t is on your Facebook profile image. This is a similar to the first mistake and it is one of the 7 Deadly Sins of Facebook . Your profile image should be of you, not of a bar code that you hope people will want to scan to end up learning about you. Where is the logic in that?
3)Some professions, such as real estate, think that a QR Code is a great capture tool to collect information of potential clients. The problem is there is no information capture to a QR Code. All it will do is send people to your website and you hope that they submit information once they are there. Until a QR Code can capture information it is a gimmick
The UGLY of a QR Code.
Nothing is uglier than when you use a QR Code to send people to your website, and your website is not optimized for mobile devices!
With all of the bad and ugly there are still good uses for QR Codes and here are 3 ways they could be used for good…
1)On a Driver’s License. Imagine having a QR Code on your driver’s license that leads to a website with important information about you such as allergies, emergency contacts and medical history. People almost always carry their driver’s license and if something were to happen to you, this would be a great way for an EMT, a police officer or even nurses to act appropriately.
2)On belongings. Depending on your age and some of your life experiences you might remember your parent writing your name inside every article of clothing you owned. Imagine being able to print a QR Code on all of these items. Lost and found would be a thing of the past as through the QR Code they could learn who an item belong to and even have a way to contact the owner. While you might not want that t-shirt back that badly, maybe you add your QR Code to your pet’s collar or your suitcase. Maybe one day we are even adding these QR Codes directly to our kids.
3)This is the best use we have ever seen for a QR Code. It was etched onto a tombstone. This is a QR Code that will survive for decades and will always be there for future generations to scan the code and be linked to a place like YouTube to view a tribute to the person. The QR Code can be redirected at any time. The videos and photos can always be updated. This creates a history that can always be shared.
QR Codes can be excellent for consumers to gather information. As for the businesses using them, use them properly and don’t plan on them bringing you any more business than you already have!
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Chadalyst – Figure out if you need a QR Code before you start using one and make sure you understand the Good, the Bad and the Ugly!