JetBlue uses QR Code

JetBlue has launched a new campaign to promote a winter travel giveaway program. This creative billboard was spotted in the New York City subway and features a QR Code; two in fact.

When the QR Code is scanned (the smaller code in the lower left hand corner of the larger code), a message appears on the reader’s mobile device asking if they want to visit the page’s mobile site. When ‘OK’ is touched the reader is brought to the mobile site straightaway. This is the first time I have ever seen this question posed to the reader/user/customer, and I am curious to know if this has anything to do with the code platform that the campaign was built on, or was it something that JetBlue wanted to make as part of the scan resolve process/experience. (I tried to scan the larger QR Code, but could not get it to resolve.) 

JetBlue QR Code

On the mobile site, there is descriptive copy of the travel giveaway, an ‘Enter to Win’ button and copy which describes four giveaway travel packages. When the ‘Enter to Win’ button is touched, the reader is brought to a page to enter contact and registration information. The reader is also asked if they want a travel guide and/or to be added to the company’s newsletter mailing list. For the most part, this section and the entire mobile site is pretty straightforward and easy to use, but I am disappointed by the lack of information that is provided for each travel giveaway. On the desktop version of the site, there is a great deal of travel and stay information but, for some reason, JetBlue decided not to include this on the mobile site. Why?

JetBlue QR Code

Was it a matter of production cost, or maybe laziness on the part of the creative team, not to include the additional information on the mobile site? Why go more than half-way there and not finish with a mobile site that is remarkable in its own right and offers true value? In my opinion, all we have here is a new and different way for people to get to a contest entry form, that’s all.

JetBlue QR Code

With respect to code instructions, all the billboard says is ‘Snap the code or register at’ Very simple and direct. Either the reader is going to understand what to do by way of the QR Code(s) or they will make their way to the desktop version of the site via he URL provided. It seems as though JetBlue has also taken a stance that many other advertisers using 2D take, which is not mentioning the need for a code reader app and where to locate one. While this is not the best way to help educate the public about 2D codes and how to make use of them, I can understand why a company would not want to try and single out and make mention of a particular third party code reader app, as this might come across as an endorsement, etc.

It would be interesting to speak with the marketing/creative team about this campaign and ask whether or not this is the first in a series of 2D campaigns, and if the company makes use or plans to make use of 2D in any other marketing channels or on-board any aircraft?

Even though the campaign works as intended and is quite clever with respect to creative, I am reluctant to pass the campaign on the litmus test. Other than a glitzy contest entry form there is nothing else being delivered by way of the scan, so does the campaign really deliver an experience that is worth the reader’s time and effort. (Keep in mind, this code could not be readily scanned while I was in the subway. I had to store the code on my reader app and then reactivate it once I got up to ground level.)  

2D Barcode Litmus Test: FAIL

5 thoughts on “JetBlue uses QR Code

  1. too bad once you submit that it doesn't take you to a mobile experience…can't believe you even thought about passing this.

  2. Good call, Roger. I, too, thought the creative was well-done, but this is just another register-to-win contest, with the added benefit for the advertiser to build their database.

    Would have been an experience to actually give the scanner an opportunity to see what makes the St. Pete/Clearwater area special (video?); offer them an opportunity to book a trip immediately or download a schedule of events or, perhaps music/song that represents that area…..

  3. Anonymous and Gayle: Thank you both for writing and agreeing with my litmus test decision. This campaign had me on the fence, as some others have too, in that JetBlue delivers what they set out to and for the most part the experience works (i.e., the scan resolve), but something doesn't sit right when you ask a reader to scan a code and what can potentially be a great interactive mobile experience isn't there and isn't delivered. It's almost like the reader does his/her share of taking the time and making the effort to scan the code and work through the content, but the company/advertiser doesn't do their fair share (i.e., delivering a great interactive mobile experience).

  4. Agreed they should have stripped this down to a contest entry. Let's not beat around the bush.

    The way I handle instructions without promoting a specific reader app is just “Search 'qr barcode reader' on your app store”.

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