qr-code | Markbeech MarketingYou have seen them around. Those little squares of code that are starting to show up everywhere – on cereal boxes, business cards, heck, I found one on the sticker on my banana this morning!

But are they really effective marketing tools?
I had a client recently ask me just that question and I had to stop and consider.

I personally love them. It’s like a little secret code that not everyone understands. It brings me back to the decoder rings we had as kids. And with 1.7 billion mobile phones sold around the world in 2012*, it would seem a natural marketing tool.

So why haven’t QR codes taken off?
According to CNN.com “…evidence suggests many people don’t understand what QR codes are or what to do with them.”

Apparently, even the tech-savvy college students are not that interested in QR codes.

“…They found that although about 80% of students owned a smartphone and had previously seen a QR code, only about 20% were able to successfully scan the example QR code they were shown. Furthermore, about 75% said they were unlikely to scan a QR code in the future.”

So should you bother with them?
I think if you are using them strategically and directing people to a particular page on your website; a new product you are selling, a new program you are offering or a big event you are having QR codes can be very effective.

[Want to set up your own QR code? Try this link]

So, should I use QR codes to market my small business?
Is your target market smart phone users who love new technology? Absolutely.
Is your target market the general public? Possibly.
Should you try them? Absolutely. But be sure to measure your results to see how effective they are at driving traffic!

*source: http://mobithinking.com/mobile-marketing-tools/latest-mobile-stats/a#subscribers.

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