At Least One Politician Puts the QR Cart Before the Horse

At Least One Politician Puts the QR Cart Before the Horse

I just received a legislative survey from Indiana State Representative Wendy McNamara in my mailbox today. The survey was one of those questionnaires where things are phrased to induce an affirmative response. I’ll keep my politics to myself, but I do want to point out that anyone who creates such thinly veiled propaganda immediately loses credibility in my book. It aggravates me that politicians do not credit our intelligence.

I was also intrigued that they published a QR code on the front of this mailing. I was going to complete the survey and share my position, and an online survey that I could complete on my iPhone would have made it incredibly easy to participate in my state politics. Boy, was I disappointed!

When I scanned the QR code, I didn’t find a survey. I didn’t even find a mobile site. It simply pointed my iPhone to Representative McNamara’s full website, where I had to pinch and pan my way around the screen to hunt down the apparently non-existent survey.

Paint me pessimistic, but I do not believe politicians want to encourage us to be more involved in the political process, other than to win our votes on election day. To them, social media and mobile media is the proverbial genie in the bottle and a mis-step could lead to disastrous results. But that is no excuse for an ill-conceived QR code campaign.

What could State Representative Wendy McNamara have done better? For starters, it makes no sense to use a QR code and then point it at a non-mobile website. The vast majority of QR-savvy people use their smart phone to scan the code. It isn’t difficult to build a mobile-optimized survey or a mobile-ready landing page to capture comments and gather email addresses. The QR code could have offered something more rewarding.

When you decide to use a QR code, make sure it leads your audience to the right information in the right format. Assume the person who is scanning the code is on a mobile device, or at least ask if a mobile detection script can be added to your website so that you present a mobile option. It’s not that hard to do, and if you need help, we can help. Give us a call or send an email, and we can have your site mobile-ready in as little as 72 hours.

For a short time, we are offering a Mobile Starter Solution for just $549, including a 5 page mobile site and free hosting for the first 3 months. Additional pages are available at just $150.


December 26, 2011 / Blog

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About the Author

Tim is digital marketing strategist and technology solutions architect at ProSocial Marketing, LLC.


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At Least One Politician Puts the QR Cart Before the Horse