As with all things great, there comes a time when Elvis is in the building. In other words, there is always someone or something that comes along and does it better, and the spotlight fades. This happens in the marketing world all the time, and the latest “has-been” just might be QR Codes. QR Codes, or quick response codes, were quickly gaining popularity because they were easy and affordable for companies and were convenient for consumers. The little barcodes took consumers right to the company website when they took a picture with their smartphones, and until now this was really the only technology that bridged the gap between traditional and online advertising.
However, SnapTags have recently emerged onto the scene and fixed some of the issues consumers and companies had with QR Codes. SnapTags work like this:
- You have a picture of your logo about the size of a QR Code.
- There is a ring around the logo. The ring has breaks in it which can be changed to create new patterns.
- The pattern of the breaks in the ring identifies the code (much like the different QR Codes or traditional barcodes).
- The code is printed on a company newsletter, brochure, billboard, box, etc.
- Consumers see the code, snap a picture, and will then have access to the URL of the company’s choosing instantly
Below is an example that SpyderLynk, the founders of the SnapTag, posted on their website to help show you the process pictorially:
Sounds similar to a QR code, right? SnapTags are small, easy to use, and convenient for those on the go. However, the codes have made some improvements. Consider some of the limitations that SnapTags fixed with a few of their most notable features:
Why SnapTags Overrule QR Codes
1. QR Codes require the consumer to own a smartphone; SnapTags work with the, shall we say, “dumb” phone.
Any phone with a camera is able to utilize SnapTag technology. Instead of sending someone to the URL on their phones, taking a picture of a SnapTag will send someone the URL in an email or a text message. This allows users to send the messages to their personal email accounts/phone numbers or send the message to a friend. The idea was that sometimes people want to remember to go to a website, but they don’t necessarily want to visit it at the very moment they snap the picture (and for those without a smartphone, they have no choice). SnapTags allow users to come back to the message when it is convenient for them.
2. QR Codes were considered ugly by many; not only do SnapTags look nicer, they also work to help increase the visibility of a brand’s logo.
SnapTags look exactly like a company logo. This will certainly help the branding efforts of a company because more people will be paying close attention to your logo. Although QR Codes do have the option to place a logo inside, it is not nearly as clear as a logo displayed with a SnapTag. If nothing else, these codes will help your advertisements look nice.
3. It is difficult to measure the success of a QR Code; SnapTags allow you to keep tight analytics on all your campaigns.
The SnapTag service can calculate how many people snap a photo of one of your codes. According to the founders of SnapTag, this is a customizable feature. In other words, you can pick and choose the data that works best for you and your needs.
Where QR Codes Win: the Downsides to SnapTags
Although SnapTags offer a large number of features and benefits for a company and/or a consumer, they still aren’t perfect. Consider the two instances where you might be better off sticking with your QR Codes:
- Cost – QR Codes are completely free to generate, but SnapTags come at a price. The price depends upon the number of codes you want to generate and how often you want to use the service. You can learn more about SnapTag pricing on their Pricing Structure webpage.
- Popularity – It seems that many consumers are just now figuring out how to use QR Codes, so it may be some time before SnapTags really pick up speed. If you are just starting a small business and don’t have the funds to get started, it might be best to let other companies set the stage before jumping into any sort of an agreement.
The best thing that you company can do is evaluate your target audience and consider whether or not they would react well to SnapTags. If you have an older audience who likely don’t own smartphones and are accustomed to telemarketing, SnapTags would work well. It’s also good to evaluate whether or not you have the funds to pay for the service. If you find that your online ads convert better than your traditional advertisements, you may want to hold off.
The truth is—it’s important that your marketing team is on top of all the latest trends, and SnapTags couldn’t be more current. Think of it this way: If Elvis was in the building, would you want to miss him?