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QR Bar Code – Too techy; or spot on?

I recently ordered 5,000 business cards.  All the while, the QR bar code was eating at my inner most business model, “keep it simple, for all customers”.  Since not all customers, including snowbirds have smart phones, I elected not to add the QR bar code to the back side of my business card.  While many agents have already taken the leap, I was doubtful and listened to my gut.  I also order 5,000 tri-fold brochures, and still no QR bar code

I do feel the QR bar code has a place in real estate, I believe that place to be on sign riders.  .   The QR bar code is bursting onto the scene around parts of the country including South Florida.     I plan on ordering 15 sign riders all which will include the QR bar code for techy passer bys that must get the information immediately.  So what is the core issue behind that post you might be thinking?

Number one, the QR bar code can capture leads, which can turn into closings.  Maybe our uber techy’s from Bloodhound have a good system of text message drips once that lead is captured.  J

Number two, where is best place online to get the QR bar code?

Number three, what is your opinion on the QR bar code?  Where would you use it in your business?


9 Comments so far

  1. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Real Estate Feeds, Real Estate Ninja and others. Real Estate Ninja said: QR Bar Code – Too techy; or spot on? […]

  2. Erion Shehaj January 6th, 2011 12:25 pm

    QR codes strike me as technology for technology’s sake – they serve absolutely no purpose, and solve no problem. Picture this scenario. You’re a homebuyer driving down a neighborhood and you see a home for sale with a sign in the yard. If the sign had a rider with a single property website URL in it (I.e, you could whip out your phone, type the address and you’re there – without ever leaving your seat. If the rider had a QR code instead, you would have to walk to the sign, scan the barcode and accomplish exactly the same thing.

    Lead generation is nice but it only works when the technology you’re using serves a purpose for THE CONSUMER and it makes THEIR lives easier.

  3. Erion Shehaj January 6th, 2011 12:28 pm

    If you think about it, sign riders with “text Home to 34556” for more information are more useful than QR codes

  4. Greg Swann January 6th, 2011 1:15 pm

    > sign riders with “text Home to 34556″ for more information are more useful than QR codes

    This is the way we do it. I can think of gimmick uses for QR codes, but, in the end, they’re ugly.

  5. Mark Jacobs January 6th, 2011 1:24 pm

    Using QR codes to direct buyers to single listing websites. I also place QR codes on all printed marketing materials.

  6. Dylan Schleppe January 6th, 2011 3:03 pm

    Gotta chime in on this.
    Disclaimer: We’re a vendor and provide both SMS and QR Codes.

    I’ve had dozens of conversations regarding QR Codes in the last month. Here’s how the discussion usually goes with the excited agent.
    Agent: “Do you do QR Codes?”
    Me: “Sure.”
    Agent: “How much do they cost?”
    Me: “Zero. They’re included with our platform”

    Can you guess why we don’t charge our customers for QR Codes?

    Smart crowd here, so I bet you get it.

    We’ve had Real Estate QR Codes in the field since January 2010 and there are a couple of instances where they work. Print media(business cards, post cards and flyers) and urban environments where you have a lot of techie demo foot traffic.

    If you’re dead set on using QR Codes here’s my 2 cents.
    1. Make sure you can reuse the codes. If you’re printing them you should be able to print once and change the content of the url they resolve to.
    2. Content behind the code is what matters. If you’re redirecting to your flash/frames heavy site then mobile users are not going to enjoy the experience. All you need to do is test your site on 1000 or so devices and you should be good 😉 Give people the information they want quickly or they will go elsewhere to find it.

    We rolled out QR Codes because of the investment Google is making with their Places decals. They are going to push consumer adoption.

    We only started printing QR Codes on our signs about 30 days ago. We’d heard one to many stories of salesman coming to “lunch’n learns” to sell agents $300 packages of QR Code signs that provide no measurable value.

    QR Codes do make a cool demo. Coupled with geosearch, they’re actually useful to real estate shoppers. I’m biased, but that’s my favorite use for the medium.

    Next time you’re in BestBuy cruise over to the TV section. Notice the QR Code on every TV on display. Specs, reviews etc… I like that.

    It’s not the code. It’s the content and platform behind it.


  7. Teri Lussier January 7th, 2011 3:57 pm

    In my market, it’s still a geekgasm thing, but business cards are so cheap you could easily test your market in that medium. I think that using them on a biz card, to hand out to techie types only, is a good application for them, saving yourself handing them out to everyone where 87.5% of the people don’t get it and then feel dumb because of that or maybe 74% get it but think you are a complete (fill in the blank) for using them.

    Good info, Dylan. I’ll keep that tucked into my back pocket for when my market gets on board.

    And Best Buy should have them, cause that entire store is one big geekgasm in a box.

  8. Karen Highland January 7th, 2011 5:04 pm

    1. I have twenty-something aged children who love technology. They will choose to take a picture of a QR code over typing in a text message any day. It’s not that they are lazy, they just like to be efficient. At least that’s what they tell me:)
    2. Given the fact that in a few short years, they and their friends will be buying their first homes, hopefully from me, I will be putting QR codes on all my printing, fliers and signs.
    3. Here’s an easy way to create your own QR codes free: Go to this is a url shortener. get your shortened url, add .qr to the end of it, put it in the url space…voila, this is your qr code for any website you want. Print it out on sticker paper… whatever. add to print or signs.
    4. We can’t afford to be dinosaurs. Technology is here…embrace it, love it.

  9. Doug January 9th, 2011 4:28 am

    QR codes are great for printed advertising or in-store displays — areas that you can control. But on a For Sale sign?? I see another industry coming alive….sellers of porn sites stick their QR codes on your signs during the night.

    Hmmmm…not sure that I would want my customer taking a snapshot of a QR code on my sign.