QR codes: The biggest missed opportunity?

Poor placement, clunky technology, and a ‘why bother’ attitude among consumers kept the squiggly squares from taking off. Time to scrap the whole idea?

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When’s the last time you scanned a QR code?

I’m guessing that for many of you, it’s probably been at least a few months. For many marketers, advertisers, and PR pros, QR codes were (and in some cases still are) the shiny object that was supposed to bridge the offline and online worlds. It sounds perfect.

For example, your ad agency creates an ad outside a local mall. Then, people scan this little bar code. They are whisked away to your store’s website (ideally, it’s mobile-friendly), where they instantly receive a promotional code or coupon. Sounds peachy, right?

What’s not to love about a way to find new ways to reach and engage with your customers and potential customers? However, QR codes have been around for a while now, and the initial buzz has fizzled. The QR code never went mainstream.

1. No clear calls to action

Most marketers slap a QR code on their ads willy-nilly, with no clear call to action. A good chunk of people don’t know what to do with a QR code, much less want to scan it without a reason. You have to provide an incentive or reason for people to scan it.

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