Interesting poll in our local newspaper about QR codes

33 replies
So our local paper had a poll about QR codes, asking people how often they use them.

54% said, What is a QR Code?
45% said, NEVER
1% said they've used them once or twice
0% said they use them regularly.

Never been a fan of QR codes, I believe them to be almost useless here in the US. Just thought I'd share this with you all.
#codes #interesting #local #newspaper #poll
  • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
    Very interesting.

    What size area does that cover
    to get an idea if it is a typical city.

    Thanks,
    Ewen
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    • Profile picture of the author iAmNameLess
      Originally Posted by ewenmack View Post

      Very interesting.

      What size area does that cover
      to get an idea if it is a typical city.

      Thanks,
      Ewen
      Distribution is about 120k I believe. Subscription based, so it isn't a free paper with random distribution. I'm sure the results would vary based on where you live in the US, and I know if you're over in europe, or asia the usage is much higher.

      How is it where you are Ewen?
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      • Profile picture of the author ewenmack
        Originally Posted by iAmNameLess View Post

        Distribution is about 120k I believe. Subscription based, so it isn't a free paper with random distribution. I'm sure the results would vary based on where you live in the US, and I know if you're over in europe, or asia the usage is much higher.

        How is it where you are Ewen?
        It seems a very low uptake.

        The people at the local Auckland Meetup group for internet marketers,
        mostly don't use them, many don't know how how to use them and most don't have the app on their Smart Phones. You would think this group would be a bigger user of them as a whole.

        I suspect there would be greater usage if the Smart Phone makers had them on their screens when you buy them.

        Best,
        Ewen
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  • Profile picture of the author Huskerdarren
    QR codes have coolness factor, but consumers just don't care IMO. I don't know if I've ever scanned a QR code that I've seen in a print magazine. And, I am seeing fewer of them it seems. Maybe they're more widely adopted outside the US?
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  • Profile picture of the author Aaron Doud
    I'm not surprised at this. QR Codes IMO make sense in addition to the rest of the message. A quick way to get someone to be able to sign up or get an address. But the message itself is what will sell whatever you are promoting.

    I've likely scanned a few dozen QR codes over the years but still think they are useless most of the time.
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  • Profile picture of the author flightrisk
    I think the main problem is you have to have an app to scan the code and most people have no idea. Then you have to open that app To scan it. If there was a way that your camera would pick it up when you point to it then I think more people would use it. IMO
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  • Profile picture of the author Aaron Doud
    I'm surprised they haven't made a build in app for QR codes.
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  • Profile picture of the author RyanJ
    There are many apps that deal with QR codes. Most of them will actually create them for you about anything you want as well.

    I scan them because 1) I honestly want to find out more about a product in a magazine. 2) I want to find out how the company is using them, and what their purpose is.

    More often then not they are not being used correctly at all. They don't give you an incentive to use it. The site it directs you to isn't optimized for mobile (isn't that the point?). They don't tell you to scan it. Or, it goes to a page completely unrelated to what I was looking at. ie I scan an ad in a magazine for a product but the QR code takes me to the main company page, and I have to look around for the product on a non-mobile site. Annoying.

    So in short, if you run a QR campaign, make the landing page mobile optimized and relevant. You would think this is marketing common sense but you would be supprised.
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  • Profile picture of the author ADukes81
    Yea, I am not surprised by this either. Maybe it's because 98% of them are used improperly.

    I am a fan of this author, and love the title of his new book coming out soon...

    QR Codes Kill Kittens: How to Alienate Customers,...QR Codes Kill Kittens: How to Alienate Customers,...
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  • Profile picture of the author AussieT
    I see them mostly useful for the real estate industry
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  • Profile picture of the author bizgrower
    I'm in a small town in USA, but I have not seen one used in any marketing collateral for at least a few years. Even the real estate mags.

    Because of the app thing, they are too complicated to use. Right now anyway.
    Ugly in an ad also.

    Also, people are used to websites, texts, emails, Facebook...

    Dan
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  • It could also be the age range of the poll takers. 75% of newspaper readers are over 45 now.

    http://newsosaur.blogspot.com/2013/0...ely-since.html
    Signature
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  • Profile picture of the author mjbmedia
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    Mike

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  • Profile picture of the author oliverj87
    Yea but the only problem with QR codes is that it excludes the tech savvy or anybody that doesn't yet have a smart phone.
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    • Originally Posted by oliverj87 View Post

      Yea but the only problem with QR codes is that it excludes the tech savvy or anybody that doesn't yet have a smart phone.
      excludes tech savvy?
      Signature
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      - Jack Trout
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      • Profile picture of the author iAmNameLess
        Originally Posted by joe golfer View Post

        It could also be the age range of the poll takers. 75% of newspaper readers are over 45 now.

        Reflections of a Newsosaur: Newspaper audience aged severely since 2010
        In MY testing, the demographic that uses QR codes MOST are actually 45+.
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      • Profile picture of the author oliverj87
        Originally Posted by KingOfContentMarketing View Post

        excludes tech savvy?
        Sorry the non tech savvy!
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        • Profile picture of the author masterwolf
          Throwing my two cents into this. I develop large nightclubs in USA. We use the latest marketing technology possible and even create much of our own. Text blasting, emails, websites. mobile sites, etc.

          I was considering how important QR codes are to our marketing mix. I asked a dozen of my very young very tech savvy staff to scan the QR for a test. HALF of my staff had no idea what I was talking about. 25% Knew what it was, but had no QR scan apps on their phone. 25% had no app, but were willing to d/l one.

          In short, over an hour of asking young adults and even older adults to scan a code. I NEVER got the thing scanned. I gave up and figured that IF our staff did not use them, our customers certainly would not be interested in them.

          K.I.S.S. Print the words, or send them a text with the link. In USA, texting cost less than 1 cent each way. (Twilio) API.

          My 2 cents... or THREE text messages.
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          • Profile picture of the author midasman09
            Banned
            Re: QR Codes

            When these first came out I did a test to "feel out the market" and.... THEY WERE A HIT!

            OK....to "qualify" my statement, my business is "Advertising". All kinds of advertising. One of my most popular Ad Projects have been;
            ...."Map Boards" on Hotel lobby walls
            and
            ...."TV Channel Guides" in every room.

            When QR Codes came out I offered a QR Code to my advertisers on these projects. I'd place a QR Code on their ad that would bring up their Website.

            Then I got "adventurous". I created a "Tourist Directory" and directed the QR Codes to the Directory.

            Not only did I have the Codes on my "Map Boards" and "TV Channel Guides"....I also made a 11 x 14 plastic display that sat on the Front Desk so Tourists checking in could see and Scan....right there b4 they got to their rooms where they could scan the Code on the TV Channel Guide in their room.

            (The Front Desk Display said; "To find local restaurants, shops and services....SCAN HERE!" with pictures of plates of food, gifts and services.

            Note: I also had the URL of the Directory Site so that if they couldn't scan the Code....they could type it in.

            I did this in a Very Popular "Tourist Town" and it was an "Instant HIT".

            The Hotels LOVED it (they could provide an additional Service and appear "More Professional"...plus it was FREE to them) The Guests LOVED it....(they could use their phone to FIND places to eat, drink, shop and "be merry") and.....I LOVED it because when I had the Hotels agree that they would display MY stuff, it was like "90% Closing Rate" of any biz I contacted.

            Now.....re: a Survey as to the popularity of QR Codes; there's 3 things I had working for me;
            1) Tourists are people who usually do not carry food with them. They are HUNGRY when they check in.
            2) Probably 90 to 95% of Tourists, today, carry some sort of Mobile Device with them
            3) They HAVE MONEY to spend.....on food, gifts, services

            So.....thanks for bringing up this topic. Reminds me of an EXCITING TIME I had.

            Don Alm.....marketing and sales guy

            Note: The tourist town I did this in is 100 miles from my home. I sold the program to a local Ad Guy ....who proceeded to "screw it up" and....I don't have the interest or energy to go down and "Bring It Back"

            However.....this is WIDE OPEN for anyone who lives near a Tourist Town
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  • Profile picture of the author internetmonkey
    It's really unfortunate smartphones cameras aren't built to just read these things like they are in asia. Agree, they will NEVER be popular as long as it is a separate app you have to have on your phone or download.

    Also last week I scanned a qr code on a bottle of wine I had bought and it went to non mobile website...
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  • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
    A few years ago, I was almost laughed out of a forum for saying "I don't get it, this is going nowhere."

    People were all spun up about QR codes, I have always thought it was dumb. Sure, a lot of people tried because of the curiosity factor, but as a practical matter, they are useless.

    I was recently running an event where one of the other organizers wanted to put QR codes everywhere. He said it would make the place look hip and cool and tech oriented. I disagreed but let him do it anyway. I thought, and still think they are super tacky.

    We had several hundred people at the event. This was a high tech event for people in the tech biz space. They should have liked QR codes. Not one QR code was scanned. Nobody gave a shit.

    I get it - if you can get someone to take action on your advertising, they are 60% more likely to buy. So, getting them to scan a QR code seems like a good move.

    I see it another way - if you are going to get them to do something, make them do something meaningful. Make them do something obvious. Something that leads them to the sale. Playing games like "scan this code to see the answer" only frustrates people and makes them feel tricked.

    Want them to take action? "Call us. Today. We will help you."
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  • Profile picture of the author NewParadigm
    People aren't educated enough on them and phones camera need to be natively able to handle bar codes/QR codes w/out someone having to download a specific app.

    One interesting thing I saw on a TV commercial, it said use Shazam app to get more information. Shazam recognizes audio and pulls up music title/artist info, mp3/ringtones to buy or give you the lyrics of a particular song that is playing. First I'd seen of it in a TV commercial to pull up info on a product. Of course its got the same dilemma as QRs, public education and someone having to download the app first.

    I think QR's have more practical applications in perhaps pulling up a "how to" video for basic maintenance on some product for example. Something more specific than just general advert inquiries.
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    • Profile picture of the author DaniMc
      Originally Posted by NewParadigm View Post

      One interesting thing I saw on a TV commercial, it said use Shazam app to get more information. Shazam recognizes audio and pulls up music title/artist info, mp3/ringtones to buy or give you the lyrics of a particular song that is playing. First I'd seen of it in a TV commercial to pull up info on a product. Of course its got the same dilemma as QRs, public education and someone having to download the app first.
      I've seen the same thing. I LOL'd about it.

      Someone has to actually be paying attention to the commercial, notice the Shazam logo, know what to do with it, get their phone out, launch Shazam and have enough time before the end of the commercial.

      This just seems ridiculous to me. First of all, why would an advertiser want people fumbling with their phones rather than listening to/watching the commercial?

      Not to mention, the number of people who have Shazam AND are watching that commercial AND get their phone out in time must be a very, very small number.
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  • Profile picture of the author Video Expert
    What size dose the area cover.
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  • Profile picture of the author Xskimo
    Just wondering....has anyone here tried "talking" QR codes? I just stumbled across them today and thought it was preatty kewl. Granted, they don't solve the problem of people not knowing about QR codes, and/or maybe not even having a reader to scan them, but I do think it's preatty kewl and might even entice some to actually download a reader just to try it out.

    2 sites you can check out, (if you're not familiar with "talkies"), are:

    QR voice
    limited to 100 characters and uses a synthesized voice, but good for a quick view and to get an idea about this if you have not "heard" them before.

    Vocaroo | Online voice recorder
    allows you to record your own voice or upload a recording.

    Both sites are free to use.

    Any thoughts??
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  • Profile picture of the author TrumpiaTim
    Very interesting, if you don't mind where are you located?
    Curious if these is one of the many metropolitans in the states that QR codes / Mobile Marketing hasn't expanded to quite yet.
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    • Profile picture of the author Robert Domino
      I personally use them on my business cards and other materials etc. I don't expect anything from them but it takes a few minutes to create, 1 minute to copy-paste, and it doesn't take a lot of "real estate" on the card/ads.

      Imho even if no one uses them, there is no downside to using them. If anything, it shows people that you cover your bases.
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  • Profile picture of the author ISO9000
    I would wonder what the cross of people reading newspaper is to those using mainly their smart phone? I have seen the death of many-a-newspaper, and the sad reality is QR Codes are a perfect fit for newspapers to become more interactive and digital.

    A proper QR Code that is. Using a free one, or a small company (or startup) for something you want to have for a long time is like back in the day buying server space from a company that may not exists tomorrow. Even more, if you use a non-licensed ones, patent trolls will get ya! Or, they just wont scan most the time because your scanner has holes and was ripped from the patents without including the secret sauces to making them have incredibly high ECC. A few times your Apple or android devices don't scan, and you've lost that customer's trust. Also, sending them to nowhere or not telling them where they are going is like a physical pop-up... without the hover-over to see where it lands.

    But here is some logic: Smart phones and devices with cameras are only increasing. Print media will never go away fully (or at least not for another 40 years... can we agree?). As long as you are directing a user to an action on PRINT media of ANY kind, QR Codes are the largest platform to do that with. Remember, they were created in the early 90's... well before smartphones... before data plans... before cameras that could read them. So one might ask, what are the next steps now everyone sees they are useful?

    If I studied statistics for a living... I might look at the trends and be making bets on when it would take off. Since I don't, I tried thinking about what would replace it and the result is null.

    Good indicator is Google Trends. Shows it has gone down. I think it is just a lull before it starts to take off again. There is a UK company that just got $96m startup to prove it (for ordering)..... you'll see it Christmas 2014/2015.
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  • Profile picture of the author AmericanMuscleTA
    When I tried to scan QR codes a couple years ago they would never scan correctly. Maybe it was the app or the QR code, but either way I lost interest.

    I still see some people using QR codes, but I don't know anyone who actually scans them.

    I'd rather have "Like us on Facebook" and "Follow us on Twitter" than QR codes.
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  • Profile picture of the author xrampage16
    The QR is within its own 'Time' but the tech/market hasn't been honed just yet.
    Real Life visual links to digital data is the future. Google Glass, and other new players in the same medium, are going to explode this type of thing. I'm not too surprised it hasn't happened 'yet' but it will.

    QR codes are the future. The incarnation you see now is likely to be reinvented into being incorporated into images/poster/billboards/commercials/etc so things can link and offer you immediate options when you SEE SOMETHING that you can then 'like' it, 'follow' it, etc.

    Resist as long as you like. Advertising Technology is stronger than human resistance. Hahahaha
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    • Profile picture of the author iAmNameLess
      Originally Posted by xrampage16 View Post

      The QR is within its own 'Time' but the tech/market hasn't been honed just yet.
      Real Life visual links to digital data is the future. Google Glass, and other new players in the same medium, are going to explode this type of thing. I'm not too surprised it hasn't happened 'yet' but it will.

      QR codes are the future. The incarnation you see now is likely to be reinvented into being incorporated into images/poster/billboards/commercials/etc so things can link and offer you immediate options when you SEE SOMETHING that you can then 'like' it, 'follow' it, etc.

      Resist as long as you like. Advertising Technology is stronger than human resistance. Hahahaha

      QR codes have already died in my opinion. They died when Google dropped QR codes. How many people are going to be driving and be lucky enough to have an app already downloaded, and care enough to scan the QR code when driving 70mph down the highway on a billboard they're about to pass in just seconds? How many people will actually pause a commercial (if they have a dvr) to scan a QR code? A waste of precious REAL advertising space. I find it interesting that 3/4ths of the advertising agencies who were pushing QR codes were put in review or fired after mediocre results.
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