So I love marketing… I try every gizmo or lead gen tactic that is invented. However, a few weeks ago I was stumped. Sitting in the kitchen fruit bowl was a Chiquita banana (because my youngest son Aidan loves bananas) and what do I see? Not just the famous Chiquita Banana sticker - but a Chiquita banana sticker with a QR code. Yes a QR code!?!
Apparently the makers of Chiquita want to engage me as I scurry to make my kids breakfast on the last week of school. Being the marketing geek I am, I pulled out my iPhone in the midst of OJ, bagels and cream cheese and scanned the QR code. It sent me to a sweepstakes web site. Yes, an “enter to win” landing page for fabulous games and prizes. Really?!?
To me this is a little over the top. Why in the world would Chiquita Banana want my email address or need to find out information about me as a consumer? Bananas, the number one selling fruit in America by the way, are looking to engage me. I find this very odd.
Yes, QR codes are very popular. So popular, in fact, that the US Post Office has once again offered a discount to consumers who utilize them in their direct marketing campaigns. However, like most things new and popular, the key is using them properly. So, over the past few weeks, I have set out on a hunt for over-the-top uses of QR codes…
- In-flight magazine – Yes at 30,000 feet 12 ads in the US Airways magazine had a QR code. Problem – I can’t use my phone on the plane! OOPS. Who thought this one through?
- Back of a truck – REALLY? Aren’t there laws against cell phone use and driving? Or are they targeting my passenger?
- A blank sign with nothing but a QR code. Hmmm Not very engaging and in some small way a bit creepy.
- Airport Security bin with a QR code for Norton Antivirus. When rushing through security last thing I want to do is whip out my phone and scan a code. Ill give Norton points on the whole security thing but QR code is a bit over the top.
Now there are several excellent examples of QR codes used appropriately and I applaud those individuals. But for today, share with me examples of over-the-top/ off the mark uses of QR codes. We can file this under the “What were they thinking?” category. Leave a comment below or send me a twitPic at @CraigBlake.