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Lessons from the Simpson Carpenter QR Code Study


Econsultancy Digital Marketers United has published a Simpson Carpenter study that revealed that only 36% of all consumers knows what a QR code is, and only 11% has used it.

This supports the findings of comScore’s survey in June, when it found that only 6.2% of mobile users have scanned a QR code. But still that “small percentage” translates to 14 million mobile users in the United States.

The latest study makes education more important to marketers who plan to use a QR codes in their marketing campaign. Even though QR codes have already been used by big brands and there has been a considerable amount of media coverage about it, it never hurts to include instructions on:

1. What a QR code is and how to scan it.

2. Where to get a scanner application for those with smartphones.

Another important lesson that may be learned from the Simpson Carpenter study is that marketers should also think about putting URLs together with their QR codes. Some of you may cringe at that idea, but a little more than half of the survey respondents indicated that they do not own a smartphone or other devices capable of scanning QR codes.

The good news is that smartphone use is on the rise and many people are looking at replacing their mobile phones with smartphones. There is also the rising use of tablets. Whatever it is, devices that would be able to scan a QR code are becoming cheaper and cheaper and more available to the public.

And while marketers cannot do much more than wait for the time when smartphones become the norm, there is something else that they can do to push consumers to scan their codes: make it more interesting. A whole 15% of the respondents said that the reason why they have not scanned a QR code is because they have not found a code that interested them. They might not have been interested in the product or the service offered, but a well-conceived marketing campaign should be interesting to their audience.

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