What is a QR Code?
QR is short for “quick response” code and is the same technology and function as a bar code on the back of your cereal box but instead of having to buy a fancy scan gun like grocers have, your phone can now read bar codes and/or QR codes by simply downloading an application to your phone that can scan them.
We wrote about QR codes in 2008 and not many advancements in the technology have been made, but we’re seeing an increase in adoption rates. People are using their iPhone in grocery stores to scan barcodes and learn about products (how green they are, the extended nutritional information, reviews, etc), so consumers understand how it works and will soon use QR codes more extensively.
Okay great, but let’s get real
What does this mean for real estate? You’re thinking that no one will walk up to a house and scan a barcode to see the price, right? That’s what we have augmented reality for, no? You’re right and you’re wrong.
You’re right that no one will walk up to a house and scan a bar code for a price, but with a new service called Stickybits, you can “tag your world” by attaching videos, music, text, pdfs, and other files to any barcode.
So imagine you put a Stickybits barcode sticker on a flyer you’re posting in a coffee house that lets people see a video of you touring the house, right then and there on their iPhone (or other cell device).
Or perhaps you print shirts up for your agents that have a barcode on the back that they can wear to Tweetups and encourage tech geeks to scan them and receive on their phone instantly a branded pdf outlining the mission of your brokerage and who the agents are, what your value proposition is or why to use a Realtor instead of going at it alone.
Maybe Stickybits can be used to add to the back of business cards that you print out and put on all doors in the neighborhood of your new listing- it can be scanned and immediately pop up with a video that has a virtual tour and all pricing, data and contact information?
The options are endless. You may be asking if augmented reality diminishes the importance of QR codes, but I would argue that it does not. The barrier to entry for QR codes is extremely minimal, my grandma could figure out Stickybits, whereas augmented reality apps are developed by and used by the most technologically advanced, giving QR codes the short term benefit. So, if you’re looking to innovate your marketing, this is one inventive way to do so!