Rating: Does anybody else ever bother to check*?
It has always been GoMobile News contention that the drinks [alcoholic beverages] industry is one of the biggest implementers of QR [2D] barcodes as a business sector. Certainly in the UK. And we quite agree that there is some very creative thinking behind the majority of their campaigns. Our only question is … Do you guys ever bother to check these things actually work? GoMobile News has just struggled with one QR campaign from Jameson and absolutely failed on a second one from Guinness. This really isn’t helping build consumer confidence in QR codes, you guys.First let’s take the QR code we discovered on a beer mat which declares, “Try Jameson with ginger, lemonade or apple and a few good friends.”
What was wrong with this campaign? Short answer? You need a really decent camera inside your smartphone to be able to read the actual QR code because it is too small and indistinct.
Firstly, GoMobile News tried scanning the code with a BlackBerry. No joy. Then we moved onto our trusty Nokia Lumia 800 W7 Mango phone.
We really did expect this smartphone to be able to handle the QR code reading but it didn’t.
Incidentally, on the Lumia we tried both the ScanLife Classic and NeoReader QR code reading apps.
Something of a first for us, NeoMedia actually generated a crash report when we made the umpteenth attempt to read the QR code on the Nokia smartphone.
However, when we scanned the QR code with ScanLife on the superb Motorola RAZR Android smartphone (which we reckon is totally underrated), we instantly got connected to the Jameson site.
For our curious readers, the code takes you to http://m.jamesonwhiskey.com. Now the first screen you see is – quite rightly – an age verification page.
Shouldn’t someone have bothered to ensure that this page was mobile friendly because it took us ages to be able to fill in the requisite data using the RAZR’s standard browser?
But at least it worked. The Guinness QR Cup was far more ingenious but it doesn’t work at all*.
We traced this story back to The Dieline web site here and it’s impressive.
Somebody has created a Guinness glass that sports a QR code which only works when the glass is filled with a porter [dark ale] such as Guinness.
It won’t work if the glass is empty (aaah!) or when it is filled with lager (sacrilege)!
The snag? Well, when you actually scan the QR it takes you to a shortcode which is http://bit.ly/hOvdU4. That’s a capital ‘o’ not a zero by the way.
That URL is currently pointing at a site called ‘livepint.com’ which is parked for its owner[s].
So why has everyone printed that it, ” tweets about your pint, updates your facebook status, checks you in via 4 square, downloads coupons and promotions, invites your friends to join, and even launches exclusive Guinness content?”
Because they haven’t bothered to do any research and GoMobile News does. That’s the difference.
*UPDATE: It turns out that the Guinness QR Cup campaign was an old one. See our follow-up article here.