QR codes used on TV advert: Is this the stupidest thing you’ve ever heard?

The Mobile Marketer has news of a super-amazing-fantastic-totally-rubbish use of QR codes.

I have to say I think QR codes are, with limited exceptions, absolutely shit.

I don’t mind seeing them in magazines or newspaper ads. Or perhaps on event signage. There are plenty of situations where their use is warranted.

But on flipping television advertisement?

Are you kidding me?

Am I having an out of brain experience?

Butter me in honey and call me Geoffrey!

Read this: [And then weep.]

The code was preceded by three alerts telling viewers to get their smartphones ready. When the code appeared on the screen, they can use an available reader to stream the video on their mobile devices or instructions to download to their desktop.

How utterly shit.

Read the full story here.

I really can’t believe this.

The code was preceded by THREE alerts? Telling viewers to GET THEIR SMARTPHONES ready? You WHAT? Apparently the QR code was displayed twice for a 45-second duration.

That, my dear reader, must have been a truly exciting experience for everyone else watching.

Apparently “thousands” of people across the country interrupted their advertising viewing to scan the QR code.

I am astonished.

I am saddened.

Look how far we’ve come as an industry. And folk are using the technology for this purpose?

Save me.

By Ewan

Ewan is Founder and Editor of Mobile Industry Review. He writes about a wide variety of industry issues and is usually active on Twitter most days. You can read more about him or reach him with these details.

5 replies on “QR codes used on TV advert: Is this the stupidest thing you’ve ever heard?”

wait for dear apple to allow ads on tv to communicate with devices connected to the same network using AirPlay and this nonsense will look as old as HDML compared to an iOS app!

Ewan, I have great respect for your articles and your insight into the mobile industry, but I think you are off base here.  At first glance, I thought the same thing as you have.  A  QR Code on a television advertisement?  That’s about as bad as one on the side of a speeding bus.

That was, until a few of our customers started using them and younger guys in the office reminded me of how they often stop the action of a TV show, thus making it far easier to scan a QR Code.

While it does sound that the way the advertisement promoted it was a bit silly, QR Codes do work on television ads! 

Perhaps its just the novelty of using QR Codes on television shows, as they are clearly not as prevalent as in a magazine, but we’ve seen quite good scan rates for television QR Codes at our company.

Check out my presentation from the 2011 World Telemedia Show and you’ll notice that 17% of all QR Code users have seen one on television.  That is just behind those who have seen them in catalogues (21%) and just ahead of those who have seen them on outdoor advertising (16%). (Source — MGH; Feb, 2011)  (You will find the statistics on QR Code scans from television at 5:10 of the presentation.)

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