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QR codes are not a versatile marketing solution

When I wrote recently about the problems with getting people to move from a print promotion to a web fulfilment piece, one reader said: “But Chris, if they won’t type in a URL, just use a QR code.”

If any of you have had a positive experience with using QR codes to get people from advertising to your website, do let me know. I’ve not seen an example yet.

Sure, we’ve all been forced to understand how to scan QR codes, thanks to the pandemic. But the reason QR codes are no good in B2B advertising is pretty simple. You need a mobile device to scan them, and how much B2B supplier research is done on a smartphone?

That’s not to say they don’t have a place in marketing: as a way to “download our app here”, QR codes are perfect, because on this occasion, you’re targeting an audience on mobile devices.

For QR codes in magazines or newspapers to work in predominantly desktop-based exercises such as “visit our website for more details”, we’ll need a way to scan them using a desktop device. Maybe some enterprising computer hardware manufacturer could integrate a scanner into the underside of a keyboard. That’d be useful.