QR Codes: Because Why NOT?
Three years ago on September 13, 2010, I uploaded a video about QR codes and I got a lot of confused questions that pretty much translated to, “What The Heck!!” At the time I was still learning about this technology, because it was still new to the United States. I would consume as much information as I could, with the goal of learning more about this cool “new” technology. In some circles I became the “GoTo” person for QR Code technology.
As my excitement grew I started to notice more and more of this technology out there. QR codes were on everything, people had them on their websites, online catalogs and more. I was guilty of this as well, until I though “Hey, wait a minute….” This is all wrong. That is when I started to understand that this technology is being utilized in the “hey new shiny object sort of way” but it was not being used as effectively as it could have been. That’s when I realized that the usage of QR codes might not ever reach its full potential because in some instances they were being used incorrectly.
- There is no reason to add a QR Code to your website because people are usually on your mobile or traditional website when they are viewing the QR Code. So if you had plans of using the QR code to direct them to your website, they are already there, there’s not need. Don’t use QR codes on a website to direct them to your website.
- QR Codes that are geared to open to a website should ALWAYS open to a mobile website, not a traditional website. We all know by now that a traditional website may not display properly on a mobile device. There ARE NO exceptions to this rule.
- QR Codes should NOT scan to “Download my catalog” because most of the time people have scanned a QR code with their phone. Absolutely NO one wants to use all of their data to download your HUGE PDF catalog to their phone.
The BEST and most practical use of QR Codes are to tie traditional print media to digital media. As digital marketers we can sometimes not grasp that everyone is NOT so enamored with the growth of technology as we are. However it is true! There are still many people that are very print-oriented and QR codes are a great option for that population of folks.
So as marketers we must recognize that although we are focused on digital media there is still an opportunity to tie traditional print to digital for clients that still utilize this form of marketing. QR codes are the perfect vehicle to get this done. As a matter of fact, this is the primary reason that QR Codes should NOT be discounted and should be revisited. There has not been an equivalent and cost effective medium introduced that is capable of tying together these two media as QR codes can, if executed properly.
Although it was once thought that NFC could bridge the gap between traditional print media and digital, it has not materialized as we originally thought that it would. This is primarily due to the cost and complexity of this technology for mainstream populations. Since the need to bridge traditional and digital, QR Codes remain the logical and least expensive way to go, as long as traditional marketing remains even a little relevant.
At one time we exclusively used traditional marketing, but we all know that things have change. In spite of this, there has not been a total elimination of traditional print media. So, we can still utilize traditional media to drive traffic to digital channels, creating a bit of a fusion between the older traditional marketing strategies and the new emerging digital marketing strategies.
Until the total discontinuation of traditional print media, as marketers we must find a way to tie together traditional and digital mediums for ourselves on occasion and for our clients. QR codes can be a very cost effective way to do this.
So lets give some thought to revisiting QR codes, if you’ve worked with them before or venture into something new if you haven’t.
5 Career Solutions For The 71% of People That Hate Their Jobs!
I wrote a post titled, 71% of People Hate Their Jobs and I started a bit of a dialogue about how people really feel about their workplace. It was really astounding, that so many people were unhappy in their jobs. If I had been asked to guess at that statistic, I would have though maybe about 45% – 55% at the most, were unhappy with their current employment situation. I would have never guessed the number to be so high, at 71%.
This means that in our daily travels most people will encounter one or more of these 71% and their unhappiness with their employment situation could affect our lives. The chances of encountering one of these unhappy people, if we must deal with customer service oriented industries is probably relatively high. This explains a lot! I am thinking about experiences that I’ve had with customer service professionals, workers at supermarkets, fast food restaurants and it explains a lot. So, I felt a need to provide some tips that may help those in the 71% feel better about their bad employment situation.
The easiest and lamest advice I can offer is to quit your job if you hate it. However, we all know that in the real world, that is just not an option. Since this is not an option, an alternate means of coping is the only choice until a better more permanent solution is available.
One of the hardest things about being in an unbearable position is the helplessness that the situation creates. This is the case with a lot of situations not just a job. The helplessness of living with a job that you hate, is that it is tied to the money that you make, the ability to provide for your family AND the ability to LIVE. We all know that without income supplied by said hated job, life could be so much worse. So, we can just take the “Take this job and shove it…” option off the table for now and lean more toward solutions that will be beneficial in the short term and long term.
A few solutions:
Think about WHY you hate your current job, this is the key to making changes. Sometimes, people find themselves in careers that were selected when they were 17 or 18 when they originally chose their college path. WE are so different than we were at 17 or 18 , and with growing up we may find that the choice we made at this age may not be a fit when we are 30 or 40. So self-evaluation is a great start!
Get involved with a cause that you find near and dear to your heart. It can really add a very fulfilling aspect to your life that may be lacking. It will also allow you to distract yourself from your current situation until your situation changes and most importantly, you will feel connected to something that matters to you.
Update your job skills, this is always a GREAT thing to do whether you love your job or not. It allows you to stay abreast of what’s going on in your industry and will help with future opportunities. Also, it looks great on your resume!
Return to School is also a great way to expand your knowledge and formally brush up on your skills. Take some time to reevaluate your career choice if you find that your unhappiness is a result of a poor career choice or consider learning more about your present field if you are in the industry of your choice. Either way, learning more can only improve your chances of changing your employment situation.
Start a business because it is a perfect time to start and grow a business WHILE you have permanent income. This could prepare you for unexpected and unplanned changes in your employment situation. It could also prepare you to move away from the 71% that hate their jobs to the 21% that love what they do.
Find what you love and do it! If you are not doing what you love now, continue to pursue your dreams until you are doing what you love! As usual, I welcome your opinion, good, bad, ugly or indifferent. You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter and or Google+.
It’s NOT the Content of Your Character BUT the Character of Your Content
If your content sucks no one will visit, share or engage. It’s just that simple! It’s sort of like the family member that can’t cook and is always willing to cook for the holidays. Have you ever noticed that no one visits that family member during the holidays? There are always a multitude of reasons NOT to visit! Oh I have to get a root canal, my hamster needs a new cage, or oh I have a toenail fungus that is just out of control. Most will say anything NOT to visit?
Well, this is the same as bad content. WHY would a person, visit, share or engage with you page, blog or social media channel when your content is equivalent to aunt Margie’s “gone wrong” Thanksgiving Day biscuits? Just like there are so many other places to eat, there are so many other places to get great content. YOU won’t be able to compete until you step your content game up just as Aunt Margie can’t compete with the Rachel Ray of the family.
The goal in content creation is placing your company content in the position to be viewed as the GO-TO source for information, which presents your organization as the voice of the authority in your field. YOU do not; however want to be known as the creator of content that is subpar, as it is a reflection of your organization.
People have almost fully transitioned from accessing content by traditional means to reading most of their content online. So this presents organizations with the unique opportunity to provide information of value to readers. This means that organizations should be working to create quality content and in order to do this there must be an understanding of the fundamental reasoning behind content creation.
It’s NOT the Content of Your Character BUT the Character of Your Content, meaning if you are currently creating content, make sure that it is good and that it is a positive representation of your organization. You can do this by thinking of the content that you are creating as if you are producing a commercial or ad about your organization. This could be content about company capabilities, company news, fun events or something similar. The goal is to give people an idea of what your company has to offer and a bit of a peak into the culture of your organization.
So if your organization is providing bad content, that is a reflection of what your company is all about and it can have a negative impact on your brand, especially if it is subpar. The creation of great content is so important in our digitally focused world. This is especially the case with the creation of online content because anything posted online could always remain a part of your organizations digital footprint indefinitely. Content posted online cannot be pulled back, once it is out there it’s out there.
The take away:
Step your content game up, present your organization in a positive way and make a conscious decision to ROCK your digital footprint!
60 Percent Of Marketers Confidence In Their Skills Suck
I just read a report about marketers, their confidence in their own marketing strategy and their companies effectiveness based on their own marketing experience. The issue seems to be that most traditional marketers are being left in the dust by the new digital marketing strategies that have all but taken over this industry.
I have noticed that people with, just traditional marketing experience and that lack technology experience seem to be struggling more than marketers with digital AND traditional experience. The report also states that traditional marketers feel as if the marketing industry has changed more in the past two years than it has in the last fifty years. I would say that this is the primary issue with the ineffectiveness of those traditional marketers that have not embraced digital marketing and consequently are struggling.
It is imperative that organizations recognize WHEN their digital marketing strategies are not going in the direction that they desire. The first step is to LOOK at the credentials of the person in charge of the marketing department, their lack of knowledge about digital marketing could be derailing digital strategies. IF they have experience in traditional marketing ONLY and are not up to date on digital marketing strategies they will lack the experience in this ever changing space to lead your marketing department in the right direction. Traditional marketers that LACK digital marketing experience simply are NOT qualified to lead digital marketing strategies. This is not a negative statement only a keeping it real kind of statement. Would you go to a podiatrist if you needed advice on your heart? It’s the same thing if you entrust a traditional marketer that is untrained in digital marketing strategies to run digital marketing initiatives. The only outcome can be less than positive.
The bigger issue with traditional marketers that are put in place to lead digital initiatives stem from organizations lack of ability to recognize that the world has changed and the old school methods of marketing are no longer as successful as they once were. IF understanding of the importance of digital marketing starts at the upper management level, and the upper level of management has a firm understanding of changes, addressing it should not be the problem. So, the ultimate issue here is that the entire organizational structure must recognize the need for change before any change to digital will happen. If those at the top lack knowledge so will others. Change needs to happen at the upper management level, without that change there will be a continuous flow of unqualified, incompetent marketers flubbing their way through the digital marketing space at the expense of the organization.
Take a look at the slide show below, it will give you an idea of marketers feel they are doing in the digital marketing space.
We are quickly reaching the point where flubbing through the digital marketing space by incompetent marketers will cause harm to the entire organization.
Steps that you should take:
- Analyze your current traditional marketing strategies.
- Track the effectiveness of your traditional marketing campaign.
- Determine what percentage of your marketing campaign should be traditional and how much should be digital.
- Hire a QUALIFIED Digital Marketer/Strategist and allow them to do their job.
- DON’T try to apply traditional marketing strategies to digital marketing.
- Embrace digital marketing because it’s not going away.