*We like this video by scan.me showing the tremendous potential along with how user friendly the QR code can be.
Mobile technology is coming to dominate the marketing world. Marketers are particularly enamored with QR codes, as they allow for dynamic consumer engagements on a level that was unreachable in the past. Indeed, the codes have begun showing up everywhere from soccer fields to rental cars. Marketers often have a tendency to cling to strategies they believe will be a major hit with consumers, but QR codes have yet to find a favorable response in the market.
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The lackluster response from consumers may be due to the fact that most do not really know what the codes are, according to Forrester Research, an independent technology and market research firm. Last year, the firm released a report that showed that only 5% of U.S. consumers with smart phones used QR codes. Of those, most were young males. Melissa Parrish, senior analyst of social and mobile marketing for Forrester, believes that the rapid growth of QR codes is “another instance of shiny-object syndrome.” Instead of striking consumers, however, marketers are the ones the fall prey to the phenomenon.
The future of QR codes in marketing depends heavily on consumers. Forrester has suggested the companies begin focusing more on awareness rather than gimmicky marketing strategies. If consumers do not know what the codes are or how to use them, they are likely to avoid the codes altogether. While the codes are inexpensive, the real cost comes in the effort of launching a marketing campaign that consumers do not really want to participate in.