Online Markerting Trends
I try and stay up to date on the QR code thing. In case you haven’t heard of it, Quick Response codes allow a user with a smart phone to take a scan of a square bar code type image and this in turns takes the user to a particular place online (a form, a web page, competition, photo gallery, information sheet etc etc)
Similar to QR Codes is MVS. This is a technology that is currently being developed and stands for Mobile Visual Search. This also allows the user of a smart phone to download an app and take a picture of an article or newspaper (and apparently products) in which your phone will then take you to that page to read more.
What seems to be happening at the moment is that the makers of MVS are trying very hard to discredit the QR movement. This can be dangerous as the QR code lovers are obviously going to come out and have a stab back, then it becomes a pissing war and to be honest we have enough of these with our politicians year round. The unfortunate thing is that your competitor will dig long and hard to find faults and broadcast publicly. So in my reading I have come across a few things that are worth noting down.
The main issue I see with QR codes is not the technology but the use by marketers. Lazy ones will add the QR code to an ad campaign that will take the user to the company website … no wonder this is coping flack. It’s just plain stupid, boring and not using the technology for it’s intended purpose. A good example however is a QR code on a bottle of wine – that takes me (at the indecisive point in my purchase decision) to a small video of the wine maker explaining the reason this wine works, the type of soil and temperature for the year it was grown and other factors that make it a good wine. (See link below for more good examples – particularly the Hienz and Heineken ones )
The same can be said for MVS. Unfortunately I haven’t had the chance to use this technology apart from a test site (I live in a sleepy little regional area of Queensland that is not know for it’s IT savvy population), however it looks promising. Testing the Shortcut App by Kooaba, I can see that if I take a picture the app will take me to a pre determined web page in which I can read more or do something. Apparently they also state we will be able to take a photo of a product (such as the wine) and go to that information page.
As with any new technology – there are bugs and questions. For example, what happens if I scan a wine and it mistakes it for a competitors? Will it cost to add the images to a database? Who takes the image in the first place and loads it to be recognised – can a competitor take a picture of my product and tag it as theirs to re-route traffic? and so on.
So, hopefully what we see is less trashing of each other and more positive promotion around the technology so that it does end up main stream. If there are flaws then let the consumer be the one to voice it and allow the developers to engage and better their products.
Some good QR examples here – http://www.imediaconnection.com/article_full.aspx?id=31159
And as soon as I find some good ones of MVS (or if someone has any) they will get posted here