I was reading the most recent issue of The Drum and one small article caught my eye. The article was about QR codes and how they had failed to reach their full potential. I completely agree and have done for some time. The concept of being able to scan a code and reach a point in cyber space is phenomenal but like anything had to be implemented correctly. Unfortunately this didn’t happen.
The point of QR codes was to give additional information to an advert, to direct them straight to where the consumer or audience member needed to be to make a purchase or get in depth knowledge about a product, event or brand but instead many of these codes directed the user to a website that merely mirrored the information presented on the advert, bombarding the user with brand information, thus adding no extra value. Users quickly picked up on this and the codes are being used less and less. Seb Mossop from Reckitt Benckiser said at the Internet Advertising Bureau’s most recent event said this would be the mobile issue he would banish to Room 101. He talked about how they have lost the consumers trust and, as I said, although an innovative idea that had the potential to change the face of advertising its poor application has failed it. Hopefully companies are starting to learn from these mistakes, but is it too late for QR codes to be used again? Can they make a come back?
It is a shame that something so useful could ultimately become to ignored and useless, but with the constant development of mobile devices it is becoming easier and easier to reach links through a phone without the assistance of such a tool. I truly believe that if we could go back and introduce QR codes differently; to cause a hype, to add value and information, they could survive and flourish into a revolutionary advertising tool, but alas this isn’t so and the further on we move the less we are seeing of these little squiggles on our adverts.