The transformative power of social media

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In my last bloggposts I’ve been so far focusing on the marketing perspective on social media marketing, however social media platforms not only have changed the way business and customers interact and opened up for new opportunities, but the Internet and development of technology,exspecially smartphones, has also turned the the receiving consumer into a proactive prosument, beeing consumer and producent at the same time.

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The Democratization of the Internet

“…Facebook and Twitter abetted if not enabled the historic
regionwide uprisings of early 2011.”

Evidence for the move towards a digital democracy is the report from June 2011 by Carol Huang in the National based on  the second edition of the Arab Social Media Report by the Dubai School of Governance that was filled with facts and data. In the report Huang writes that social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter were used by people to organize demonstrations and to get updated about he current situation because traditional media was either beeing compromised or shut down which finally coluded in the fall of Eypts and Tunisias dictatorial regimes, the rise of the opposition in Syria, Libya, Yemen and Bahrain and more benefits to the population of Saudi Arabia, Jordan and the United Arabian Emirates .  Ayman Salah, social media expert and entrepreneur confirms in an interview from Aug 7, 2012 in Digibuzz this view on the important role of social media in the Arab Spring and its continous growth of users. He says that “the Jan 25th Revolution helped in proving that social media can be very effective as a communication platform; it allowed a lot of people to know the news happening in the street while mainstream media was either delayed or denied.” The Wired Reporter from the Simon Fraser University concludes in his blog about the role of social media during the Arab Spring that “perhaps the most important journalistic lesson to come out of the uprisings was that in the face of oppression and censorship, social media defended freedom, including the freedom of the press.”

The polarization of Syrian society

“What if social media played a much more negative role in the Syrian revolution than many think?

So far most opinions found were utterly positive about the impact of social media on freedom of word and the Arab Spring. Enrico de Angelis writer for the web magazine The New Significance and lecturer at the University of Bologna (Italy), however, asks “What if social media played a much more negative role in the Syrian revolution than many think”

On the contrary to Tunisia and Egypt, the people of Syria are much more divided in their critizism of the regime. The usage of social media to organize protest and foster action has a polarizing effect on the Syrian society. Both groups, the ones working for change and those that want to keep the status qou use social networks to to prove the others wrong, writes Enrico de Angelis. He concludes that

In a context like this, it seems like Syrians who sincerely strive for peaceful changes in the country are being overran by forces beyond their control. Social media have a dynamic of their own. Ironically, the way they are being used may well play into the hands of the current regime.

A country by country approach is needed

So we see that you cannot apply the social media concept as such onto a entire region but that you have to differentiate between countries adjusting to their special conditions. This also raised the question I am going to take up in my next post, namely what role social media currently plays in the middle east and what impact the role of social media during the Arab spring has on the middle east today.

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Now let’s be honest: where do you get your music from?

After concentrating on the mobile industry and its problems with privacy rights I want to draw your attention to another industry we have to do with everyday, the MUSIC INDUSTRY!

So what is the current discussion about?

Its all about the Copyright! According to Online dictionary, Copyright is defined as:

the exclusive right to make copies, license, and otherwise exploit a literary, musical, or artistic work, whether printed, audio, video, etc.: works granted such right by law on or after January 1, 1978, are protected for the lifetime of the author or creator and for a period of 50 years after his or her death.
I guess everyone of you knows this scenario: You want to listen to a song, you click on the youtube link, and then it says: “GEMA does not allow this video”
Especially if you have been to a foreign country it becomes clear to you that you cant get access to a lot of music videos when you are in Germany.
So what does the GEMA actually do and what is it for?
GEMA represents in Germany the copyrights of more than 64,000 members (composers, lyricists, and music publishers), as well as over two million copyright holders all over the world. It is one of the largest societies of authors for works of music worldwide.
And why are they doing this?
Music isn’t created “just like that”. It’s the result of an individual’s creative effort and therefore the intellectual property of the music author.
Supporter of GEMA are of course especially artists and musicians. With campaigns like “Mein Kopf gehört mir” (My head is my property) they demonstrate against the abuse of copyrights through the internet.
Opposers of the Copyright are especially the “Piratenpartei“. They claim in their actual program free access to music in the internet. Meaning that you can download music in the internet for free and legally. Of course the problem with that is obvious, who would pay the artists and musicians?
Are there any alternatives or middle ways?
A program which offers you a wide range of music LEGALLY is for example Spotify.  This application finances itself through advertising, furthermore the hours of music is limited. For 5 euros per month you can enjoy as much music as you want, without any ads!
Gray area in Germany is the streaming of films and series. There are plenty of pages on which you can stream your favourite serie, without paying. Whether this is helpful or not has everyone decide for himself.
Problem for Managers and Organizers
Imagine you are a clubowner or an organizer for a big event, what economic consequences causes GEMA?
-You have to budget the extra costs for playing music, of course.
In the past years Clubowners and Organizers of events got along with that. But since 2012 there was a change in tariff rates planned.  The original plan was to introduce the new tariff reform in January 2013. This did not happen, because the BVMV(Bundesvereinigung der Musikveranstalter) negotiated with GEMA and they could find a middle way. This middle way includes higher costs of only 5% in January 2013. In April 2013 costs should be raised for clubwoners for another 10% (For more detailed infos click here). The ultimate tariff reform should be introduced at the earliest in 2014.
What is the problem with the new tariff reform?
In order to simplify the tariff rates and make them more transparent GEMA wants to have 2 instead of the former 11 tariffs.  This means a lot of extra costs for a lot of people. Clubowners expect extra costs of 600 to 1200% and “club dying” because not everyone can adjust the extra costs with extra entrance fees. Lutz Leichsenring, member and spokesman of the Clubcommission Berlin fears:
“The money could end up with the Dieter Bohlens of this world, and not with the small actors.”
Procrastinating the introduction of the new tariff reform is a first success for the oppenents like   LiveKomm , Aktionsbündnis Kultur retten etc., but it doesn’t solve the problem in the long run.
What do you think? Is the GEMA necessary? Isn’t there another side of GEMA?

Ho Ho Ho, Merry Purchase

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Holliday seasons have always been a great motivation to spend a bit more than we usually tend to: for family, friends and most importantly, some would say, for ourselves. As if we actually needed extra motivation to fill in our holiday carts, companies like Tasimo makes extra efforts to remind us, with a fresh and Christmassy new commercial presenting their new coffee machine.
The the5marketeers, a strategic brand management blog for coffee lovers,reports that as a response to Tasmio, Philips and Nescaffe offers cashbacks up to €100 on purchasing the Senseo or the Lattisima machines.

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On the other side of the coffee retail map, stands Starbucks and Nespresso which surprise with their brand new Christmas coffee flavors. Starbucks with the Geisha, a hard-to-grow premium bean, for no less than $7 per cup and $40 for half a pound bag. The Time reports, that this decision is the next step in Starbuck’s marketing strategy – convincing the costumer that a cup of coffee, which used to be sold for less than $1 is actually worth much more.

Moreover, they report this strategy is not just unique to Starbucks, but rather a process in the fast food industry today, offering

premium products to compete with the casual restaurants. Jack Russo, an expert in the industry, claims these premium product are aimed to a specific cut of the population, rather than, who has no problems to spend more money on high quality products. This previous post elaborates more about trends of premium product. If you belong to the group of people who believe this is an outrageous move of Starbucks, perhaps you should watch Jimmy Kimmel, host of ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live, more often: “Although while it’s ridiculous to spend $7 on a cup of coffee, it’s not that much more ridiculous than spending $4 on a cup of coffee.”

In order to keep with the competition, the5marketeers posted Nespresso pulled out of their sleeves 3 new tastes especially for the Christmas holidays: Coconut, Hazelnut and Macadamia Nut. Hazelnut, which can also be tried in one of the Nespresso boutique stores around your area.

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As Starbucks wished us recently: The holiday drinks are here, so have fun!

A bitter sweet chance – chocolate industry uses ethical business models (Introduction)

“Anything is good if it’s made of chocolate.” Jo Brand

Chocolate

After focusing and taking a critical view on social problems in Latin America I want to come back to the “other America” and talk about its economic potential and business possibilities that come along with this. Passing by the store “Rausch-Plantagenschokolade” I decided to write about the great world of chocolate. I also worked in a cafe which sells expensive chocolate from all over the world. First I did not understand why I should pay five euros for a chocolate bar when I can also have it for 50ct. But after my boss explained me that cheap chocolate has so much chemicals in it – e.g. Milka would use chemicals which make the chocolate melt in your mouth – and that it is produced without caring about quality standards and actually exploiting farmers I finally realized that it is worth it paying a bit more.

Talking about Rausch

Rausch-Plantagen-Schokolade-Puerto-Cabello-43---Kakao_z1Rausch imports chocolate with 43% cocoa from the plantation Puerto Cabello in Venezuela. On their webpage it is said that they cooperate with the ministry of agriculture and local farmers in order to support them and help them to sell their products for a fair price. Other chocolate products from Latin America are Amacado, dark chocolate from Peru with 60% cocoa content and El Cuador, dark chocolate from Ecuador with 70% cocoa content.

“Rausch has not only propelled his company on one of the fastest growth tracks in Europe, he’s re-introduced the concept of truly premium chocolate bars to consumers in Europe and abroad.” Bernie Pacyniak from Nationaldriller

Pacyniak continues that Rausch could more than double its revenues over the last years from 45 million Euros to 100 million Euros and currently has around 550 employees and producing chocolate in other developing countries in Latin America, Asia and Africa.

Why does that happen? Why are people willing to buy chocolate from Rausch?

Since international competition and the effort to lower prices has led to a low-quality production of chocolate, Rausch actually noticed that this was a great opportunity to produce premium chocolate bar with good quality and a “distinct experience to consumers”.

“We would use only fine-flavored cacaos, but opt for regular sugar and lecithin as opposed to cane sugar and no lecithin for our Plantagenschokolade line,” Jürgen Rausch, founder and CEO of Rausch

How does the business model of Rausch support local farmers?

Rausch works together with local governments, brokers, cooperatives and individual farmers in order to find ways how to develop growing regions further and how to support local farmers as well. The philosophy of Rausch is that farmers should be rewarded with a good salary if they work hard. Therefore they try to eliminate the “middleman” which means that there aren’t too many people involved to trade chocolate. In this way the income of local farmers can be higher than it would be in other chocolate companies.

“We also want to help the farmer have a better life by earning enough money so that he can enjoy and provide a future for himself and his family.” Rausch

Rising problems

“High quality raw materials, such as fine-flavored cocoa, are becoming very scarce,” Rausch said. “That’s why we have to do something for the future.” Rausch

Rausch is currently developing more processes of how to produce high quality chocolate more efficiently in the world and they are building new logistic centres to answer to rising demand of good chocolate. The future will be interesting …

Is it okay to stick at nothing for success?

The last two weeks I focused on Red Bull and it’s marketing. While I described Red Bulls marketing in general two weeks ago I pointed out three things to learn for Red Bulls Stratus Project last week.

Red Bull Gives You Wings

When most of the people think of Red Bull they see an energy drink, bulls, football clubs or sport events in front of their eyes. The image of the company is absolutely related to extreme sports. Therefore the well-known slogan “Red Bull gives you wings” fits perfectly. Experts categorize Red Bulls marketing as extreme marketing. But doesn’t extreme mean that there have to be victims?
Hermann Strittmatter, founder of the agency GGK Zurich, Red Bulls extreme marketing has obviously taken victims. The first one was Eli Thompson, who died when he crashed into a mountain with a wing suit. The purpose of his was of course, to produce a Red Bull movie. The second victim was Ueli Gegenschatz who died when his Red Bull sponsored BASE jump in Switzerland was not successful.
He argues that: “The accidents are results of the perversions of event marketing. This time Red Bull went too far”. The Swiss magazine accuses Red Bull to have a marketing strategy of “Break a leg”. Overall, Strittmeier beliefs that “Red Bull acts irresponsible.”

“The risk is obvious”

On the other hand, globali who left a comment on kleinezeitung.at insits, that “every one who does extreme sports knows the risk”. According to him, “an accident like the one of Gegenschatz would not have gotten that much attention if Red Bull did not sponsor it.” He thinks that everyone who does extreme sports and finds a sponsor like Red Bull is lucky because “he does not have to pay for mobility and material.”

“Everyone is responsible for his own life”

My own view is that, while it is true that Red Bulls marketing strategy should be observed very critically, everyone is responsible for his own life. Red Bull does not force anyone to jump out of a plane if he or she does not want that. In sum, I would argue that we cannot blame Red Bull for the death of these two guys even it is very sad. They made the decision to jump and they knew which consequences could result.

I know what you did last summer… yours sincerely Whatsapp,T-mobile and friends

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We are chatting, texting, sharing and posting…every day. Recently, I recognized a change in certain “Everyday-Apps”. After sending messages via Facebook or whatsapp I could see whether my conversation partner  saw my message or not. I could even see when he or she was online for the last time.

A spy function? How come? And by the way, what happens with all the data?

While searching for answers on these questions, I found out

about another interesting fact:

According to “die Welt” the end of the SMS is near. After 20 years of confidential service, messaging applications like “Whatsapp” and Networks like “Facebook” replace our good old SMS. “Die Welt” underlines what I recognized in my personal life the last weeks. No one is responding on my SMS, everyone responds on Whatsapp.

HELP, Am I the only one still writing SMS?

As stated by “teletarif.de” big telecommunication companies like T-mobile already recorded less transaction volume, due to the fact that SMS demand decreased. Is the SMS dying out?

What makes Whatsapp such a good alternative to SMS?

Whatsapp makes the exchange of short messages, pictures and videos possible, without ads and without a high fee (there will be a fee of 0,99$ per year after a use of one year). Brian Acton ans Jan Koum, founders of the “whatsapp” application state on their blog that:

Remember, when advertising is involved you the user are the product.

At WhatsApp, our engineers spend all their time fixing bugs, adding new features and ironing out all the little intricacies in our task of bringing rich, affordable, reliable messaging to every phone in the world. That’s our product and that’s our passion. Your data isn’t even in the picture. We are simply not interested in any of it.

This sounds just great! As there is REALLY no advertisement on whatsapp, these entrepreneurs are very convincing…

But lets have a look on some other, neutral sources…

With respect to the report of “computerbild” and “heiser security” Whatsapp has a big security problem, sniffing and hacking into the conversations is easy, especially when the users are using the same LAN.

The CEO’s response regarding these accusations?  None.

ZDF heute looks at the problem in a different light. The insecurity would not only affect individuals, but the whole economy. Economic espionage will become easier and a profitable tool for criminal gangs and even governments. Todays business men and women would have more company intern information on their smartphones than in their dispatch cases.

Blogger Klaus Düll mentions on his “pretiosio-blogvarious alternatives. User can either switch to other, more reliable applications, tested by “Computerbild” or

become member of protest groups, which strictly boycott those kinds of applications and social networks. Its your choice.

Malte Spitz tried another way of drawing the worlds attention on the mobile phone sector and its insecurity. Watch his talk on ted.com to learn more about his experiment.

Together with “zeitonline” he visualized his project. Click here to follow  Malte Spitz 6 month travelling for example from Berlin to Frankfurt and back and see who he called in that time…

We definitely know now that our data is stored…we can either accept and ignore it or try to fight for our privacy rights.

What do you think, is there a chance to win this fight?

 

Strategic Decision Making

In May 1998 Vanessa Kullmann, the owner of Balzac Coffee, decided, after living 2 years in the USA, that the German coffee consumer is ready for an American coffee module and established the very first branch of Balzac Coffee in Hamburg. 14 years later, Kullmann is employing more than 800 workers with yearly revenues of €23 million.

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A Cup of Coffee in Berlin

Last week I was invited for a friendly cup of coffee, which included a short espresso tasting course, in the bourgeois neighborhood of Prenzlauerberg in Berlin by Marlone, a manager in one of the 53 branches of the Balzac Coffee spread around Germany. Marlone explains that Balzac Coffee recently purchased one of the leading competitors in Germany World Coffee, becoming the leading coffee chain in the country. When asking the manager what is the secret of success, the business strategy of Balzac Coffee, Marlone sits comfortably on one of the many sofas around the café and explains the German consumer has a different taste than the American.

“This old looking sofa that we’re sitting on, the graffiti picture behind me, that is how it looks like in each and every branch of Balzac – it’s comfortable!” Marlon says with a smile. He continues and explains that the quality of the Balzac products is the number one reason for its success: unlike the leading American competitor Starbucks, foamed milk is produced by hand and not by machine, espresso is served within several seconds since it left the machine and coffee related products are made from fresh ingredients only, and not from different kinds of syrups. He adds, that the location is one of the most important aspects that higher management considers when opening a new branch, trying to pick neighborhoods with an age average above 30 and with a high density of tourists.

Business Strategy

Around the World

Evan Carlmichael, the owner of the world-known entrepreneur blog, reports that when Starbucks began to expand, it used a different and rather controversial location-based strategy than its competitors. Starbucks decided ‘blanketing’ an area, open many branches in a specific neighborhood rather than opening them in different locations around the city. This created a short delivery and management times and shortened the waiting lines for customers in every individual store. Moreover, Carlmichael reports that providing the costumer with an intimate and welcoming environment, accompanied with a great cup of coffee as well as new innovations as pre-orders via the internet, new fresh can drinks, these will all create a good reputation on its own. As a result, Starbucks spends less money on normal advertising.

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 Another example can be seen looking at Caribou Coffee, the second largest company-owned coffeehouse in the world, which has quite a different business strategy than Starbucks. AdAge.com, an international world-known business blog, , quotes Alfredo Martel, VP marketing and project marketing:

“we don’t have interest in being the biggest… we’d rather be great at what we do”.

This symbolizes the business world-view of Caribou – a smaller but a higher-quality chain with little pretense. Caribou began offering exclusive oatmeal breakfasts, ‘grown-up’ sandwiches combined with permanent and limited-time new avant-garde drinks, that haven’t been seen in the market so far.

Moreover, in order to keep improving, logisticsit.com reportsCaribou is using the services of SuccessFactors, a global leader in on-demand performance and talent management solutions. With their assistance, Caribou is identifying successful young employees more professionally and eventually promoting them to higher positions in the firm, creating a long term successful management.

Making billions of $ in the drug business of Mexico

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“Brazil is portrayed as the poster child for Latin American potential, while Mexico is the symbol for what’s gone wrong.” Rodrigo Lara Serrano from AMERICA ECONOMIA Worldcrunch

Mexico’s population currently living below poverty  exceeds 51 % CIA worldfactbook whereas its “big brothers” (Canada and USA as members of NAFTA) only note a level below 10 %.

Around half a million Mexicans enter the USA a year to find a better life there, many of them illegaly. (guardian)

What attracts people to be involved in the drug business?

Patrick Radden Keefe, a journalist of the New York Times wrote an interesing article about how a cartel makes its money. Did you know that a kilo of cocaine produced in Colombia and worth $2000 increases its value to around $10000 when it enters Mexico? Incredibly.

But did you also know that it will be worth more than $30.000 when it crosses the border of the United States and then even $100.000 if you sell it in gramms?! Not only one kilo is smuggled every year. Imagine there are tons of kilos. Cartels earn revenues estimated somewhere in the billions of $ dollar.

Mexico’s drug war

After becoming president in 2006 Felipe Calderon started the drug war against the cartels and many of their members were killed or arrested.

“Since December 2006, nearly 48,000 people have been killed in drug-related violence in Mexico” CNN

According to CNN Calderon and Bush had made an agreement to fight against drug business. The Merida Initiative (named after the Mexican city where the two met) had included a U.S. pledge of $1.5 billion between 2008 and 2010. Current President Obama had requested to expand this program in 2011 with investing more millions to enable the provision of aircrafts, inspection tools and other sophisticated drug-detecting technology to the Mexicans.

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The normal worker’s life

An unskilled worker earns between $300 and $500 net income a month according to worldsalaries.org. Many families in Mexico are very big with many relatives. Imagine $300 for 5 people a month. Is that enough for a living?

If you had the choice between working around 12 hours a day and earning that little that it is hard to feed your family and on the other hand you can earn millions within the drug business and probably buy something special for your little daughter or your mother. What would you choose?

“it has never been the objective…of the public-security strategy to end something that it is impossible to end, namely the consumption of drugs or their trafficking…” former Mexican president Calderon 2012

The Enterprise Mobility Revolution – Introduction

appstore_blogpostimage-resized-600My topic shifts now from availability to mobility. This means that I will treat everything which comes along with Enterprise Mobility the next weeks. This week I begin with a Introduction into that sphere. Enterprise Mobility , a word which became a hotshot in every big-company-managements vocabulary, top of mind for a lot of IT leaders at companies everywhere and means the trend toward a shift in work habits, with more employees working out of the office and using mobile devices and cloud services to perform business tasks. Your employees and customers are mobile, which means your business processes must also be mobile.

“Enterprise mobility is about giving the company itself (not just individuals within the company) the tools and technologies to do business anyplace, anytime, anywhere.” – Christopher Glenn, 2010

Check out this amazing video which is explaining Enterprise Mobility in an easy way.

Don´t confuse Enterprise Mobility with the term “mobility technology” because it is not only a mobile cell phone connection but moreover it includes wireless IP networks, managed services, cloud computing, and social media. All of these things play a role in enabling the anyplace, anytime, anywhere aspirations of a company.

AT&T Model

In september 2012, the American company AT&T outlined four distinct phases of enterprise mobility in an educational event. Visitor Maribel Lopez, elaborated on the 4 phases of Enterprise Mobility in her article which was published in September, 2012´s Forbes online magazine. The phases are:

  1. Informal.  No formal process is in place and most initiatives are personal efforts or based on requests from various executives.
  2. Silos. In phase two, different divisions plan and execute separate initiatives that may overlap.
  3. Coordinated. In this phase, enterprise standards exist but divisions are free to plan and execute their own initiatives, as long as the initiatives adhere to the company standard.
  4. Integrated. In the final phase, initiatives are based on a formal enterprise strategy and roadmap. Initiatives are planned, executed and monitored centrally.

The biggest problem about this enterprise mobility is the security aspect. Every employee, wherever he is, carries all the sensitive business data within his/her mobile office. Due to that many providers offer Enterprise Mobility Management solutions. I will introduce you them them in my next week´s blog! Thanks for reading!

hurdling barriers to enterprise mobility

The efficiency of QR codes

2012_12_12_17_41_14Something for early adopters or already mainstream?

QR (Quick Response) Codes have recently popped up like mushrooms everywhere; They are on squares, buildings, chewing gum packachings, tables, and all kind of prodcuts and places. So, a couple of days ago, I was sitting with a friend and drinking coffee at one of those fancy cafés at Ku’Damm. On the table was an advertisment telling you to be social and follow them on Facebook and a bar code. I offered my friend a chewing gum and guess what was on the packaching? A Bar Code! Holly mother, are there actually people out there that have enough time over to install a bar code reader app on there phones and then even start to scan advertisement? My friend agreed with me that no one does that. But there must be a reason why those tiny little black- white things are invading our world. So how effective are bar codes?

What is a bar Code?

If you haven’t seen or heard about bar codes yet, you are probably a proof for my friends and my hypothesis that nobody cares about them anyway. I probably shouldn’t be telling you this but after reading the following lines, you will not longer belong to those innocent people that don’t know anything about bar codes. Are you sure you want to continue reading?

Reaching the traget group -The effectivness of  QR Codes in Marketing Campaings

Jorge Aura , blogging for Seeking Alpha says that “QR codes, a mobile form of barcodes, are designed to allow consumers to quickly access more information. Nowadays, many companies use this technology as an additional element in their advertising campaigns.”

So now that I know that you know what a QR code is, lets have a quick look at why firms are increasingly using QR Codes in their marketing 2012_12_12_17_56_36campaigns. Michael Garten partner at mindgruve says that they “create a more intimate experience for users as well as increase the effectiveness and response time of opt-in marketing campaigns.” He goes on that QR codes are also usefull for driving traffic to the firms website and allow for targeted marketing. But he also admits that “the technology is still very new and in most cases requires a smartphone. Marketers will also need to make sure they have a significant web presence. With this type of campaign, companies must ensure that consumers will remain engaged once they hit the landing page or the campaign is destined to fail.” Elen Bahr, posting for LaBreche, offers a somewhat less optimistic picture. She writes that “QR Codes, the most common of the mobile barcode formats, have not fulfilled their promise” for connecting marketers with their audiences. In fact, only 11 percent of the U.S. adult population uses them.”

Here some hard facts for those of you who like  numbers

“Depending on which study you read, and your target audience, QR code penetration can be 10% or less.” John Gumas

According to Jorge Aura in 2011,  “21 million consumers used their smartphones to scan a QR barcode”. He further states that number of users is expected to increase to 26 million. John Gumas, blogging for marketingsmart.gumas.com, says however that 10% or even less of the targeted audience are going to respond.

QR Codes remain some2012_12_12_17_57_30thing for the early adapters

Sounds as my friend and I were right; QR codes still haven’t crossed the Introduction stage, so recently QR codes remain somthing for early adopters. So better don’t create a bar code yet for your about.me page unless you consider yourself a pioneer. However, wouldn’t it be funny to put a bar code on your jobb application or bag ?!