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With the pandemic, restaurants are more cognizant of germs. Which the rest of us germaphobes have been like wait — you don’t clean your menus? Gross! So now you can’t go anywhere near a restaurant without scanning a QR Code.
The only thing is this — what do your customers see when they click that code?
Join Jason and Bridget as they dive into this socially-distanced topic.


  • Jason Tucker @jasontucker
  • Bridget Willard @bridgetmwillard
????Check out Bridget’s new book “Keys to Being Social: Being Real in a Virtual World”


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Editor’s Note: Transcriptions of episodes are created with a mix of speech recognition software and human transcribers, and may contain some grammatical errors or slight deviations from the audio.

Jason Tucker 0:09
This is episode number 172. The Smart Marketing Show COVID, restricting QR codes how this change markets brought to you by ServerPress, makers of DesktopServer. They make local WordPress development easy. Check them out at And our new show the query, go check out slash security.

Support us on patreon

I’m Jason Tucker, I’m an IT director and web developer, find me over Jason Tucker on Twitter.

This is my friend Bridget Willard. She’s a marketing consultant, you can find her at YouTube, on Twitter.

And also, if you if you didn’t notice, there’s ways of subscribing to the show in multiple ways. If you want to subscribe to us as like on YouTube or on pontica as a podcast, there’s a myriad of ways to go about it. So just look, look wherever it is that you go and download those sorts of things and search for us. And if you don’t find us, let us know. We’d appreciate it. Bridget, how you doing today?

Bridget Willard 1:22
I am well I am broadcasting live from San Antonio, Texas, military city, USA. That’s why there’s 500,000 single men here, just in case you’re wondering. You search I’m also retiring in my age bracket and want to get married and I’m not quite ready for that yet.

I’m chillin like a villain in my home office.

Jason Tucker 1:50
So just say that you move to a place where like you essentially loaded a deck. So it just it you’re good to go just one make it

Bridget Willard 2:00
have the my pick of the litter which reminds me of the Scott Stratton book called QR codes kill kittens. So that is what I thought of I didn’t read it because he used to rant about QR codes back in 2013. Yeah, everybody was using QR codes. But guess what, we were not ready for this technology not unlike most technology that comes out, right. And now we have a pandemic. Nobody wants to touch paper all of a sudden, even though paper money always carries the flu virus or any other kind of virus, or eco lie or whatever you would like. For the US mail. It’s always been like that. Now all of a sudden, restaurants are putting stickers on their tables and asking you to load a QR code which fortunately for iPhone, people, you don’t realize you are code reader anymore. So fast forward seven years, the QR code is resurrected, you cannot get rid of it. I pretty much doubt will ever really use paper menus, except for people like me who are annoyed at what the QR code pulls up.

Jason Tucker 3:17
Yeah, the the QR code. The QR code thing is is an interesting one because the fact that I think Win Win was way back in the day back when you and I were going to like

Bridget Willard 3:30
this. Mmm.

Jason Tucker 3:32
Yeah. And we would all just like fantasize about this QR code thing, because it’s this idea that you can just pull out your phone, take a picture of it. It takes you to, you know, it takes you to a website. You didn’t have to type in a web address. And yeah, magic. Yeah. So. And the thing is, is that the second I saw that I can’t remember, I think it was two versions of the operating system ago on the iPhone, when that came out that they were going to make it so that you could do that straight off the phone. Just hold the QR code right at it. It shows up and you’re good to go as long as the camera apps open. Man that that’s that that changed a bunch. And I think I think at one point, if I remember correctly, Android had that same type of functionality. And now there’s just Android so fractured. And there’s just so many different types of androids that are out there, that and the operating systems and it’s it’s kind of variants that I could see why, you know, it just never stuck.

Bridget Willard 4:29
Welcome. Doors source. We’re not familiar with that. Right?

Jason Tucker 4:39

Bridget Willard 4:39
But this is the time in history, where the native ability and the actual practical use for the common person have collided. Uh huh. to sink. That’s why I said COVID single handedly resurrected the QR code.

Jason Tucker 5:00
Yeah, I think so. Mm hmm.

Bridget Willard 5:02
Very well. We had an episode earlier in this year after the pandemic began, about restaurants marketing, because this is like restaurants, marketing on Instagram, changing their menu, because they’re the ones that are really trying to survive. Technology apps, downloads, social media website builds anything zoom, zoom single handedly went from something that I teach people taught their employees, or maybe even didn’t even teach it to them, set it up for them, to everybody, literally, and their grandma leading Bible studies in their home, it took me four hours to teach somebody how to start a zoom meeting for a Bible. Okay, so like, everybody is using zoom, everybody is using QR codes now. And that’s great. So some fancy salesperson comes into your restaurant, it’s like, you should sign up for this service. And we will put your menu there. And the, the the manager or the owners probably like, yeah, that sounds great. Or at the franchise level, they’re like, making any decisions. And and it goes back down to something we hammer on, on this show on this network, which is, what is the user experience? Yeah, what? What are you serving with that technology? It’s not that’s not over. Once they go to that website, what do they see? Because if they’re going to a Google Doc, then it’ll be mobile responsive. And people read it, if they go to soul You know, I client has those one PE or static website that’s responsive, then they can see it. But if it goes to a PDF, and I swear, I, I, it’s more than ever before. I’d be like, I’m 47. I work glasses. Right now. I literally have 2020 vision. Yeah, but the phone is three inches wide. not bringing my computer is study your menu. And my computer isn’t load up the QR code. Okay. All right. So

Jason Tucker 7:32
in mind you, you can still pinch to zoom, you can still do all this stuff. But those require dexterity requires patience of moving the thing around. If you were to just take frustrating the text and make the text, fill the whole page across. And it’s just one menu item after another down the road. If you wanted to get fancy, you can use accordions. So you click on the accordion and the accordion pops open. So you get like a nice little accordion list of stuff. I mean, there’s a there’s a whole bunch of ways of kind of making a good menu work. But yeah, the QR code side of things. I mean, it’s, it’s awesome to be able to do that.

Bridget Willard 8:07
I was at a local chain last week. And it’s a big chain in Texas. It might even be other places, but I’ve never heard of it. 54 Street grill, I don’t know anyway, so. So you go there. And then the thing is that people don’t want to serve you until you are ready to order. Okay, so the first thing is okay, so I know how to use a QR code. I’m fine. I look at my menu. How do you know that I’m ready to order. If it was a real restaurant, I mean, a real menu, a physical menu. Like you have your menu, you’re opening it, everybody can see that? That’s what you’re looking at. Yeah. And then you put it on the edge of your table sticking out is like the universal sign that I’m ready to order. Uh huh. But with our phones, which I put my in the other room, so it doesn’t distract me, but with our phones. Okay, well, I know what I want to menu, order. Now. I’m going to check Twitter like I would in real life, you know, in a physical situation, okay, I know what I want to order. So they need some kind of like, flag or because I literally had to, I literally, I thought I went oh, I had to stop using my phone. So I just sat there like this, the waiter passing me by. And suddenly I was just like, looking to make eye contact with anybody who would pass you by it looked official. And this lady said, Oh, can I help you? I’m like, how do you order like I started thinking because, okay, here’s the thing. So the QR code, it made me register with my phone number.

Ah, because they’re doing what they’re supposed to, which is no, um, it’s it has to do with I know they’re doing this in Europe because Warren was telling me about it. They’re, they’re tracking you. In case there’s so that they can track back

Jason Tucker 9:59

Bridget Willard 10:00
Alright, okay, so. So then I thought, Well, wait a second. Was I supposed to do something else to order? Was I supposed to order on the website? I didn’t know. Right? And so then then I just said, How do I order and they’ll go, Oh, yeah, just send your waiter over and upset guy, that kid who walked by me about four times. And all they wanted was a cheeseburger. That’s it. And I was. And I was hangry to try to be patient and not like that California. And plus, like, the whole Texas thing is way slower, which is why I moved here. But it’s just like, wait, because then I started, like I was here, I’m thinking myself in the customer shoes, because I am the customer. And I’m thinking, Oh, am I doing this wrong? I’ve never been in this restaurant. I’ve never had to use my phone number to register. That there is a lesson in that.

Jason Tucker 11:01
Yeah. Yeah. You know,

Bridget Willard 11:02
when, when a customer gets confused, QR code or whatever, any situation, then they start to wonder if they did something wrong.

Jason Tucker 11:14
Yeah, we were experiencing that at the at the church before we, you know, went into COVID-19 lockdown type of situation here where the folks would come into the church, and we have a we have a check in not checking, but like, a, we have a signup form that people would fill out. And so there’s a big piece of paper, which hilariously has a QR code, that’s the entire width of this paper, and you pull out your phone and you, you know, you, you try really hard to make sure that you get that thing and frame. And then after that, you go and fill out a form and you’re good to go. And I had one lady, I was in there because like whenever I launch something like this, I always stick around for probably like a week or two just to make sure things are working before I go like, Okay, I’m handing this off, you’re good to go. And then you know, I’ll go off and do another project. So I’m watching her struggle to figure out how to get a QR code thing to work. She had a really old iPhone, and it was running a very old version of the operating system. And I did kind of go back at one point and did the research to find that like that iPhone just couldn’t run the latest version of the operating system. So she would just never be able to do it. And, and she’s like, do I have to have a special app for this? And I’m just thinking like, does she need? Should she? Maybe she should? Am I gonna have her install an app? Do I want to have this conversation of Do you remember what your password is? And I’m like doing the whole it, you know, juggle to figure out shuffle to figure out like what we should What should I do? What should I not do? Come to find out like our web address for this thing is like a it’s a short link, but super easy to just type in. And you know, our, our address, internet addresses, it’s just three letter or four letters long. So it’s like w ACC dotnet. Like, it’s superduper short. So like, why would you just like do that slash check in Doom done. That’s it. So she just went to that real quick. And it loaded up. And she’s like, oh, thank you very much. And then somebody else’s, like I was having a problem with QR codes as well. And I was like, oh, okay, so that brings me back to to your restaurant scenario. What happens when the person just walks in, and they pull out their janky, iPhone, you know, 3g s or whatever, and they’re trying to take a picture of it. It’s taking a picture of it, instead of it waiting for the little notification to show up at the top. Like, what what do you think their fallback procedure is for that? And do they have a bunch of menus in the back?

Bridget Willard 13:44
I think they have paper menus. Yeah. Which is kind of weird and ironic, because of all the people think that we’re ruining the planet, whether we are not it’s not the point. We’ve gone back to single use, right? Yeah, don’t have salt shakers. You have packets, because you know, everything everybody or used to be upset about, which is who is touching the stuff. Now the people like me who have autoimmune diseases are like, Oh, this is how I’ve been living since 2005. So welcome to my life. You touch a napkin, and then you touch the couch up? Hmm, maybe nobody’s touching that stuff. Because it’s nasty, and it doesn’t get cleaned after every table. It doesn’t. Okay, so if you’re, you know, that’s just normal, but at some point, the cost and the sustainability issues are gonna be a problem for a restaurant and not a long term solution. And you know, Beth, throw in the comments.

Jason Tucker 14:49
Yeah, bring that up.

Bridget Willard 14:51
If I have to get my phone over to a restaurant leaving and that is an interesting thing, and that’s why I was so surprised about it. That Warren was telling That was his experience. And one of the cities he had to go to, I think it was fan over with his students because, you know, Europe’s all about privacy. They’re the whole reason we have another pop up on right now. Why? But then you’re going to have you go to a coffee shop for lunch or something. You have to give me your phone number.

Unknown Speaker 15:25

Bridget Willard 15:27
like a parole officer was like, I don’t know about that. Like, I was fine with it. Because whatever. And it made me think of Yvonne Conway Williams. Yeah. Oh, the doggy dog. So I’m met in her security talk she gave a couple years ago, or camp Orange County. She’s like, yeah, just give false information for all that stuff. What’s your maiden name? Tarzan. What city were you born in? Uh huh. Lithuania, whatever. It could be anything. It just has to be the same answer. So I wonder if people are going to go 8675309?

Jason Tucker 16:14
Yeah. Yeah.

Bridget Willard 16:17
I mean, you could do that. But then it defeats the purpose. Cuz Jenny gets around clearly or that guy gets around. It’s true.

Jason Tucker 16:26
Cool. Cool. Can we talk a little bit about the the, the tactic, tactics people should be using for? Yes, so I’ll start with pitfalls. And then we’ll kind of work our way backwards. So and because the fact that I’ve had to use these at work and have used these for clients, sites and clients marketing and stuff, QR codes are their single use. Like you can only make it once you take you take, you know, whatever web address, a phone number, and SMS, like you can do SMS over QR codes. There’s a whole bunch of different types of ways that you can use QR codes. But once you create that QR code, you go onto one of these QR code generator websites, which I’ll talk about that in a minute. You go in there, and you put in the web address that you want it to go to. And you you submit it. And then let’s say that you hypothetically work at a church where somebody submitted a URL that you’re going to do, you make a QR code, somebody runs out and goes and makes a zillion copies of this thing that’s gonna have a QR code on it. And then come to find out that on the same day, you go to take a photo of that QR code, and it takes you to a 404 page because somebody misspelled the URL. Right. So save yourself the headache, if you can somehow make sure that that QR code is going to be using some type of redirection, either a redirection that just happens on your website, or a redirection that’s like through Bitly, or it’s using some other way that you can then go in and quickly change it, if something screws up. That’s a good thing. And if you also wanted to make sure that you know, every time somebody goes to this thing, that you’re getting a count of how many times it gets yours. These are all benefits that you get from using some type of redirection service because you can change the URL if something screws up, it makes the URL smaller, which means that the QR code doesn’t have to be as as complicated because the more words and letters within the QR code, the more complicated that weird blob is supposed to look like. And so you kind of need to just work through what’s the best process to make sure that this is going to work for you. And I think you have to get screwed over once or twice to realize like, Oh, I can’t just put a raw URL into this thing and then expect it to work down the road.

Bridget Willard 18:56
Well, that’s why we have the show, but I’m gonna raise my hand. Yeah, please. people in the audience redirect service.

Jason Tucker 19:04
Yeah. So I mean, like, it could be it could be Bitly, a link shortener, a link shortener, it can be and that’s what I’m trying to like, broaden that. Different term to it. It could be a link shortener, you there’s a company or rather an open source project called you are L or while you are LS URLs that you can use and that’s a free one that you just install on your own website. And they’ll do it. actually are. Its was a WP WC WP. Yeah. So wp is our URL shortener

Unknown Speaker 19:42

Jason Tucker 19:43
Yeah, you can do a subdomain too. It could be a sub domain. So if you have like a really short URL, then you want to do a subdomain to it like qR dot something, something, you can do that too. So there’s, there’s a couple ways to approach it. But I think I think the real the real piece there is you want to make sure that it’s something that you can change later. Because, as you know, Bridget, you, you write a book, you print the book, and it’s printed.

Bridget Willard 20:09
Yep. And I went and looked for like 84 footnotes. And I had more than 1404 on blog posts that I quoted from.

Unknown Speaker 20:19
Wow, really? Yeah.

Bridget Willard 20:21
Because I started writing those. They were originally blog posts I started writing in 2011 was a lot of fun for like, don’t delete stuff off your blog people. And I found somebody to spoof the URL from Amy Donahue as well, it took her old URL and all the content that used to be on it and claimed it as their own. It’s really interesting.

Jason Tucker 20:48
Yeah. Oh, wow. But that is

Bridget Willard 20:51
another good footnote for right now is y’all Jason just said, Make a specific URL. So that’s gonna go to a landing page, we have two episodes for Jen Miller, about landing page best practices, go find those, you don’t want a bunch of navigation, you just want what you want on that page.

Jason Tucker 21:11
Yeah, and I will say also, like, if you’re gonna do something like we did with this, which is

Unknown Speaker 21:18
a QR code to my book,

Jason Tucker 21:19
there’s a QR code to your book, make sure that you actually put a little bit of whitespace around the QR code, especially if you have a complicated background that’s happening, like like I have on here. Having that white background is going to help out a lot. And also making sure that that URL, which we ended up using the Amazon, I don’t know if it’s an affiliate link, but the Amazon URL, that’s a shorter version of it, make sure that you’re using the shorter version of it. So that way, it’s less complicated, because every one of those little black boxes and little weird things that are all around it, that’s information that the computer’s having to look at to determine, you know, which place to actually go to

Bridget Willard 22:00
an affiliate link for the FCC. Get $2 if you buy the book, well, they know they Thank you very much.

Unknown Speaker 22:10
I don’t want to get chilly.

Jason Tucker 22:16
So there’s, I wanted to also kind of mention, using a QR code generator, and how you should be kind of looking at that. So nothing’s forever, and websites go out of business all the time. And so you know, we’re talking about a few things here, one that, you know, if you’re using something like Bitly, hopefully Bitly doesn’t go out of business. So let’s make sure that that you know that that’s okay, on demand

Unknown Speaker 22:43
supply, though.

Jason Tucker 22:44
Right? Yeah, exactly. Or, or the domain name doesn’t get registered. And now you’re at a point where you can’t even use that thing anymore. So you may have these QR codes that are floating around in a book, and now people can’t go to your footnotes

Bridget Willard 22:57
or Wait, wait, wait, wait, wait. Uh huh. Haha, wait, the QR code, does it go to a website and then redirect to the redirect service you put in?

Jason Tucker 23:10
Oh, we’ll see. That’s what I was just about to bring up. So some QR code generator sites will go to them first, then redirect elsewhere. And other ones, just take the raw data and then redirect it. And the way that you can check that out is on your iPhone. If you go and scan that QR code, and look up at the top bar that pops up the notification bar, it’ll say it’s going to Bitly or it’s going to watercooler Or if it’s going to we’re a QR code service that’s going to go out of business at some So you may want to look at that just to see

Bridget Willard 23:50
Oh, cuz you know, a lot of those restaurant ones.

Unknown Speaker 23:53
Uh huh.

Unknown Speaker 23:55
So yeah, service. Oh my gosh, yeah, I didn’t even think of that.

Jason Tucker 24:00
I know, right? So that’s why I wanted to bring this service up. So the this company doesn’t actually do any redirection stuff. They they just pointed directly to that QR code. So for instance, if we go to like, Oh, geez, my keyboard. I have a keyboard that has some issues. So if I go de right. There you go, Bridgette, now you don’t have to zoom in with your face. Zooming the pieces within a QR code is that you can select the color. So if you wanted to select a color or you could even get fancy and use a gradient if you like, a background color, which probably whites a pretty good one unless you’re doing like black on white or something then or white on black. You can put a logo in the middle of it so it could actually show a logo and if I hit generate, you can see what it will look like over On the side there, that’s cool. And that’s what I did for yours. As I put, I put, I uploaded your book logo in here and then customize the design. This is where you can mess with things that don’t really matter, but may matter to someone who is wanting to make this look a very specific way. So you can go in here and kind of select a few things and hit generate. And you can see that the complications have now changed from, from something that’s blocky to something that’s not so blocky, all these things kind of come with a bit of a hit. And that you may end up making it so complicated that if you photocopied a photocopy that then got scanned and then faxed to somebody, then it’s gonna look pretty bad. And that generational loss is going to occur there. So try to find something that’s very basic and and use something that’s very basic, just unless you feel like you want to make this thing complicated. The other piece to this is, is that some QR codes depend on if you have a logo that’s in it or not, if you like remove the logo, for instance, and we’ll scan this, you can see that the complication changed in the background. And that’s because what you’re doing is you’re actually adding errors to the QR code. So if you were to cut a small part of this QR code off on the corner someplace, or this part over on the right hand side got a little damaged or something, he would still scan. But if you add a logo to it, it can no longer be scanned. So you kind of want to look at that. Lastly, setting it the how high of a quality or low quality is, if you set really low, then it changes that complication, if you set it really high, it may change that complication as well. It also makes it so you can download high quality and low quality versions of the of the, the image. And you can do it as a PNG file or SVG, PDF or ups. So yeah, take a look at that and see if this is something that will work for you. They work with everything. For instance, if you wanted to have it, so somebody can make a phone call the second day, scan it, or an SMS message or make it so that your V card information is available. That’s if you if you’re somebody who’s like trying to sell Bitcoin, or use Bitcoin to sell a coin, but use Bitcoin to, to do a transaction. This one I don’t know if anybody’s really played with us, but you could actually make it so that if you provide Wi Fi service, like at your restaurant or something and you wanted to actually password protect it, you could password protect it, and they can scan it, it’ll automatically put in like you know, your business names, you know, SSID for the Wi Fi and what the password is. So there’s a whole bunch of like, really cool ways to to use one of these QR codes,

Bridget Willard 27:53
and you use it for sending people money on Venmo like tips for bartenders, total karaoke people and musicians.

Jason Tucker 28:05
Yeah, you know, you if you wanted to upload the Venmo I think the most even in here is that then No, no, that’s Vimeo. But if you wanted to put like a URL in here, or put an image or something, if you wanted to have that displayed there, but yeah, you just put in the web address to the Venmo account, and then you’re good to go there. Same with PayPal, or, you know, any of those would work, work good. But that’s the basics of a QR code and kind of how one of those is generated. But like I said, be super careful that when you’re looking at QR codes to test them and try to scan it, if your web address doesn’t require www, maybe remove the That way, it makes it shorter. And that doesn’t make it as complicated. I’ve even seen like billboards with a QR code on it.

Bridget Willard 28:54
That’s when Scott stratten used to say that this is when he just lost his mind. Because no, you’re not even supposed to be using your phone while you’re driving. Okay, and I feel guilty looking at it for directions. You know, even if I glanced down, I’m not touching it.

Jason Tucker 29:11

Bridget Willard 29:13
I know, you’re gonna, you’re gonna put it up to the sky. Come on, but it does make sense for being able to tip a musician and stay back away from them and not bother them

Jason Tucker 29:25
also, but especially if you make it big enough that it can be scanned from far enough away. You know, if you have a real close, then it’s gonna fit some super small then you have to walk up to them and actually do it.

Unknown Speaker 29:36
Yeah. Banner

Jason Tucker 29:38
got an eight and a half by 11 QR code sitting right next to you, that would work 10 feet away, like no problem.

Bridget Willard 29:44
But I mean, you could put it on your banner that you put up they hear the band. Oh, yeah. Like there’s all these people doing concerts outside now. Mm hmm. And you drive in your car, but if it’s on the banner, then you could you know, it’s more than just for restaurants but it’s like right now. At least,

Jason Tucker 30:00
so one of the things I wanted to show you, you can see that little banner that shows up on the top. It’s not it’s not in focus, but you can see that the web addresses open wp in Safari, so that tells me it’s not being redirected in any way. So whatever service you’re gonna use to do a QR code generation thing, which the one I was showing was q QR code dash monkey comm it’s it’s just using the the, the method in which you create a QR code. So it’s not using something that’s proprietary to them that they’re like redirecting, or they’re going to like, steal your address at some point or anything like that. But I’ve seen plenty of these that totally do that. And you go scan it, and it’s like, go to cute, you know, qR scan comm slash something. And you’re like, Oh, no. So then you go to that, and it you can see it redirect a couple times, as they collect the data that they need to get to say, yeah, be careful out there.

Bridget Willard 30:59
Definitely. So definitely make it go to a landing page. Definitely PDFs are better than images for your for your Well, I don’t know, I think that you shouldn’t be using images instead of text. Yeah, in general, ever, anywhere. Okay. That includes on Instagram, people, that Instagram is the worst, the worst, not the platform, but the people on Instagram are the worst. And every time I just want to type, I can’t read that. I can’t read that. I want to be like, I guess they would call me Karen. Now. I just call myself Bridget, who has 2020 vision and can’t read your Instagram thing. So if all those words in there, guess what? Put them in your caption. Okay, so I literally was going to sign up. While I did sign up. I just decided not to go to this networking group here in San Antonio. They had an event. I couldn’t figure out how to even register. I was like, Where is it? All they sent me was this giant.

Right? image of a flyer. Okay, stop design for print first, just like for print first, design it for somebody’s phone?

Jason Tucker 32:25
I agree. I agree.

Bridget Willard 32:27
It’s not a fire. We don’t want flyers on the internet,

Jason Tucker 32:30
mobile responsive, you needs to be mobile responsive, it needs to be that if, if if I’ve set my phone up to where I’m blind, and I need to have every word be as big as the screen to be able to use it, then you need to build that. So it does it that way. And if the entire website shows up on your screen, right, and you did it wrong.

Bridget Willard 32:52
Right. And that is an excellent point, Jason because we have Ada codes. Okay. Ada is a the Americans with Disabilities Act is not just a fly hashtag. It’s not just it’s it’s all its physical. It’s digital. So you you have a big giant, your TGI Fridays or something I didn’t go there. So don’t sue me or anything. I’ve never been to TGI Fridays, the last I don’t even know how many years. But let’s just say you’re at TGI Fridays, and now you you, like somehow get to do that if somehow can figure out how to scan a thing with your, in your low vision situation? Low to no vision. Okay, so if it’s an image of your menu, then you’re unaccessible. You’ve opened yourself to liability. Yeah. And loss of customers, which you care about the most. But I mean, I feel like I shouldn’t have to say, is there a cheeseburger on this menu? That’s all I just do have a Cadillac Margarita. I couldn’t figure it out.

Jason Tucker 33:59
Right? I don’t know, I would need to speak to someone who knows a little bit more about ABA when it when it comes to something like this. But to me, it sounds like if you were to put a QR code, and next to a QR code you had in Braille scan me as a QR code or however you would like to convey that right then the person who’s blind, blind people use phones can scan that QR code. And if you built the website in such a way, that’s going to be the menu or the signup thing, or whatever, it will take you to a page that then their screen reader could say the things that needs to be said, telling you Okay, you’re good to go connect and here’s how to, you know, here’s how to get into the queue for sitting down in the restaurant or to go whatever. Yeah, I think you I think you hit all the things because you didn’t have to go and create like a Braille menu. And you had to like do you didn’t have to make it in Spanish and in French and Italian if, if the website had all the conversions stuff on there. Like he’s a technology that’s available to you to kind of make it all work. You know, one thing I was, when when I, when I was maybe like two months ago, or even three months ago, I was trying to go to a store to go pick up some equipment for my work. And it’s a electronics store. And there’s this huge line outside and I was like, wow, what is going on here with this huge line and come to find out, they were using like a service that you could pay for if your business to like add you to a queue, I think it was called like wait in line calm or something like that. But they had a QR code out front, you walk up and scan the QR code, they also have a web address that was on there if you just need to type it in. And then you can go and fill out the form that says like, you know, I’m here to buy this thing. And here’s, you know, I don’t need to speak to somebody, but I just need to go in here and buy it. And they were using that as crowd control to be able to make sure that only so many people were allowed to be in the building. And they can keep track of how many were coming in and out. And but you could also sign up remotely. So if you’re at home, you could scan it in, scan off their website, or just go to the website, off their phone, to say that I’m going to be going to the store. And they would tell you like when’s the right time to come. And here’s how you know, here, here’s the map. So you can just get in there and get out as quickly as possible. So like, I don’t know, if your if your business, you could definitely use this as a way of making it so that it looks like you care about your customers. And I think it would be really great for the customer to feel like they’re being cared about because you took the time to provide a map or took the time to provide a a form that doesn’t require you to put in a phone number or it doesn’t require you to put in an email address or any of that sort of stuff. But they still got the experience of, you know, just showing up anonymously to go buy the thing.

Bridget Willard 36:50
Yeah, because I think even people like me who have been fine going out in public since May 15. I was like, You got six weeks to quarantine. For me. That’s all you’re getting? To the person who’s like, I’m not going out. Either way, there there is that mindset that I am making a choice? Do I feel like spending my money at the store? Because now it is a chore to go anywhere? Right? It’s not even that funny karate, like I do and I enjoy it’s fun when I go out with Ronda, you know, but it’s not fun to go by myself. So I literally rather have a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, then sit there. But it’s not the same as when you could go the single people could go eat alone at a bar and sit there are with other people so that you didn’t feel like you’re alone. Now Mike up popcorn and ice cream is for dinner. I don’t care. I don’t feel like cooking. I don’t want to deal with it. I like to cook more for lunch? Or make something more complicated at lunch at nighttime, I’m done. That’s why you select to eat at night.

Jason Tucker 38:05

Bridget Willard 38:05
And then you could be around people? Well guess what, first of all, you can’t be around people. And even if you do go to a bar, you’re at the table, or you’re 10 feet away from the next person because there’s sets of two chairs. So why why have got spending money? So like even me? Who’s totally willing to go out? Right, that experience having another layer of frustration on the person who’s willing to go and spend money?

Jason Tucker 38:34
Yeah, yeah. Is that a good choice? You know, and I think I think one other one other kind of takeaway that I’ve that I’ve seen, you know, with this is that treat treat the customer the same way you’ve been treating the customer, which if they’re an anonymous customer that just shows up at your business to, to buy a thing and leave, don’t add an additional set of like, like, like hoops that they have to jump through in order to make a transaction occur. You know, we’ve been doing a lot of a lot of that sort of thing at the church where we want to make sure that we’re not, we’re not trying to collect data for the sake of collecting data. Because for me, I don’t like being a data hoarder, where you just have this like this like silo of data. I mean, GDPR will will definitely explain that to you if you if you live in one of those countries that you need to deal with that, but or California, which were California or California, but I’m having those types of things where you need to worry about that. don’t collect data for the sake of collecting data and only click the Like the lowest amount of data that you need to actually make the transaction occur. last four digits of social security number probably not something that you need to know all the time. You do need to know like you know the the numbers on the back end Have your credit card. You know, there’s like these different things, but there’s some things that you just don’t need to collect. Definitely don’t need to save and make sure you get rid of it as fast as possible.

Bridget Willard 40:09
Yeah, like giving your credit card number over the phone. So yeah, write it down. Right? You just why don’t you just make a PayPal account? I could just PayPal you the money? Uh huh.

Jason Tucker 40:20
Yeah. And the other thing is, like, Don’t Don’t, don’t make it look like you don’t know what you’re doing with this stuff. Like when you you know, we put a QR code on on the album art here as more as like a funny thing. Yeah, Easter egg. But it’s already digital. Like, don’t put a digital thing on top of a digital. Because at that point, you’re just making yourself look dumb, because it’s like, oh, so I have to pull my phone out. So I could scan the QR code that’s on the screen. To go to the thing on my watch on my phone. It’s like, okay, I suppose so. But if the only way someone’s gonna look at it, like I wouldn’t do I wouldn’t run an ad on YouTube, and then put a QR code on the YouTube video. For one. They’re probably watching YouTube on their phone. So you can’t even scan it.

Bridget Willard 41:07

Jason Tucker 41:08
Which is what happened to Bridget because I sent Bridget the the art saying, hey, that’s what we’re gonna use this week. And she goes, I’m not in front my computer, I can’t scan it. And I was like, Oh, yeah, that’s true. Hmm. So like, those are the types of things you want to like, think about because your customers are going to look at it and go, like, cool. You join the the QR code bandwagon, finally. And oh, by the way, you put it on the thing that I can actually scan it on, because the scanner that I would be using is in my hand right now.

Bridget Willard 41:35
Well, I mean, even with my new book that’s out, Ron and I made the landing page yesterday. But I’m except for LinkedIn, I’m not really sending people to the landing page. Because that’s just another layer. I don’t need to know, I don’t need to know. But if I do need to know, guess what? shorten the link with Bitly? You know, and which is what I did I put that on Facebook, but it goes straight to the Amazon store. The landing page is there just because it’s smart to have it but it’s not. You can’t find it unless you know, it’s just for search. It’s not on my top navigation. You know, sometimes you do things like that just in case. But just send people where you want them to go stop making things complicated. You don’t have to, like, okay, you know, if you want to buy cigarettes, a liquor store, you got to ask, and then they’ll give it to you. But you don’t have to do that with a Snickers. You just grab it, put it on the thing, buy it and go. You want. You want to be seamless you want it to be Yeah, landing pages for search. That’s what Rhonda said, That’s exactly why we did it. That’s why on the navigation is just in case somebody searches that. And if they happen to see that instead of Instagram, I’m stupid Amazon, not stupid. But Amazon then yeah,

Jason Tucker 42:53

Bridget Willard 42:54
I mean, it’s just for the, it’s for the internet, it’s not for real people. And that’s the thing is like, what are people experiencing? That’s you have to have that empathy. And sometimes you don’t have that empathy unless you kind of collaborate with somebody and like what you were saying. And I was like, I shut my computer down for that. I’ve been trying to be like, really good about that. Like literally not closing it putting asleep shutting it down. Right. So that I have that extra layer that so for me, I did that. So I don’t work just because I can. But that’s the whole thing. Do you want to don’t add? We used to talk about this all the time it gives WP Jason for fundraising. Just let them donate the money. For last email. That’s all you need. And there’s so many pages like I want to donate to something they were using authorize net, which we always hate it. Okay, worse gateway ever. And then page and there was four pages I had to fill out and I was almost like, I’m not gonna donate. So any of those e commerce situations, whether it’s the menu, which is still ecommerce, like you’re not buying it on that website, but you’re there with a digital layer to your shopping experience, right? It is less frustrating as possible. Ask people if you’re like, if you’re, for some reason you’re listening, and you’re the owner, or you’re working directly with the owner of the restaurant, you know your menu, ask your customers, how is that experience? And then if you use the right redirect service, then you could talk to your web developer and say, Hey, can we do this? And he’ll say of course, or she’ll say of course, or they’ll say of course.

Jason Tucker 44:54
Yep. Yep.

Bridget Willard 44:56
Ask ask your customers. It’s never a bad idea.

Jason Tucker 44:59
Yeah, I have one other thing to add before we get into our tour Tip of the Week. And and that’s, that’s something that you’re gonna go out Jason again, like you’re gonna bring this up one more time. But you could use

Unknown Speaker 45:13
UTM codes, no, I do that now

Jason Tucker 45:16
I do taso UTM codes great for this. Because if you’re gonna make a bunch of redirects anyhow, a bunch of short URLs or any of this stuff, you’re going to need to use something like this, because you can least craft the stuff after your web address, to figure out where did this QR code happen. So you can have a bunch of QR codes and you’re going to have one that’s going to be on a flyer that you send out on Mondays, you’re going to have another one, that’s going to be a flyer for Tuesdays, and you’re gonna have another one that happened on Mondays, but it’s only for this zip code, and you have this other one, that’s going to be another flyer for only people with red hair, like however you want to, like you know, structure it out. So UTM codes are great, because you can look at the web address, the campaign source, the medium, the campaign name, its terms, as well as its content. And those are all those pieces that you essentially get to make the rules up for this. But down the road, you’re gonna be able to look at the analytics data and go, okay, QR codes obviously don’t work for my demographic. Why am I spending the time generating QR codes? Or you look and you’re like, Okay, so obviously, I should have done QR codes A long time ago, because 80% of my, you know, inbound traffic is now through a QR code. Okay, I think I should have done QR codes A long time ago. So look at them, figure out what’s the best way and figure out like is this QR code thing going to actually work for you or not. And if you’re going to spend the time doing it, spend that one extra second, figuring out how to do UTM codes. And we’ve done we’ve we’ve talked about these in the past, there are services that will generate them for you like the one from Google, or you can generate it using something on your computer or even in your web browser to kind of just like, generate that QR code on the fly, quick and easy.

Bridget Willard 47:01
So speaking of tools, I’m like, I didn’t know what my Tool Tip of the Week is, I built a tool. Okay. Thanks for reminding me Bitly slash Cyber Monday prep, it will ask you to copy this to your own Google Drive account. So you need to be signed in to the Google Drive account that you want to be in, because I don’t want you messing up mine. But if you really don’t want to do that, send me an email at Hello at Bridget Willard Comm. And I will download this an Excel file or something. But basically what it is, is it 40 days to cyber monday worksheet. It’s like now until October 22 is when you’re going to start your 40 days it goes on tells you what you should be doing. take an inventory of the top 10 products, it will be on sale. If everything’s on sale and nothing’s on sale. If everything’s on sale, and nothing’s on sale. Remember that. And then. So that’s your task for October 22, October 23, make a list of the products including the URLs, and it has two tabs. Now it goes through like that tells you want to do it gives you links to my friends that do work that I trust. And then the second tab is helps you make your social posts for each URL. So there’s 10 products. So there’s 10 URLs, it asks you to shorten them with a Bitly Thank you, Jason.

Jason Tucker 48:43
And then we’re gonna add a login.

Bridget Willard 48:46
I know see, you got a login. And so actually, one of my friends messaged me last night said if your attachment didn’t work in the email, and I just wanted to say oh my gosh, email marketing doesn’t have attachments. But anyway, I mean, he’s my more. He’s my mortgage broker friend, he didn’t know like, I’ve just it’s not relevant to him, but it’s fine. Like, I just want you to know, there was no attachment and I’m like, like people don’t read it literally says, you will be asked to copy this to your Google. Anyway, um, see, I’m more educated, he is even a cheap person. So I so I made this so you can. Now this could be whether you have a digital store, or whether you’re going to have a physical stores the same kind of work, like inventory was going to be on sale for Black Friday, or what your campaign is nonprofits for Giving Tuesday and just change out that language. But basically, here are 40 days and you get to take most of the weekends off and it lists all the tasks that you should do and helps you just get it Done 40 days to cyber monday worksheet, it’s free. I made it because I love you and you need help. It’s an intervention to all my friends who have ecommerce stores. Love Bridgette.

Jason Tucker 50:14
Yeah, I love that you added this whole section in here where you’re able to prep the URLs. Have your Bentley be able to kind of go through each one of these pieces so that way. So, you know, normal people don’t know what social media marketers do, and they don’t realize that there’s actually some like, planning that happens ahead of time your meter?

Bridget Willard 50:38
You? No, that’s I did a thing where it says, okay, so it says, promo tweet. And it says, For a tweet, one is the day of tweet two is a day of tweet three is a day off. So there’s four tweets, you have to write different ones, Facebook posts day of and if you scroll over, it will say maybe LinkedIn. Yeah, that’s gonna be day up and Instagram, if you insist. But that LinkedIn bio better be the link to the things on sale, or people will be frustrated and they will bounce.

Jason Tucker 51:15
Uh huh.

Bridget Willard 51:17
So even what you when to do it, you go right ahead or have a couple of people writing it together. If you have a department, you know, and it’s I’m not getting anything for it. And I don’t want anything for I just know, y’all need some help. There it is. I love you. I give

Jason Tucker 51:39
your gift to the world.

Bridget Willard 51:41
The black. And then our friends that are digital people. Oh, yeah. It’s Black Friday is not for you. Black Friday is for stores that have physical place. Cyber Monday is for us to have digital products.

But you know what I mean, digital stores, right?

Some have both. So either way, just move the days for Black Friday. And also, Small Business Saturday is the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Everybody thinks that’s so far away. But you know what? It’s not. Starting right now is going to guarantee you success. You do a little bit of day, just like housework. Otherwise, it’s gonna be Thanksgiving, and you have 10 people coming over. And the turkey isn’t thought and you’re not going to have a good experience. Yeah, yeah.

Jason Tucker 52:37
Well, here’s mine. So I was on Reddit one day, and I was looking at you. I was like you one day, one hour. I was looking on Reddit and somebody was some I think they were they were talking about how can I get a photo of a place far far away, like this place is super far away, I want to see what my house looks like when the house is growing up. And I don’t necessarily want to look at something that’s on Google Maps, or you know, any of those sorts of things I want like a nice photo of it. Or I’m going to be selling real estate and I need to be able to get a couple photos of this house. And so I was like, Oh, that’s really interesting. How does that even work. And so, you know, like with anything, there’s always an Uber for something. And so this one in particular is an Uber for photos. And so the way that this works is you you sign up for a service as either a photographer or as someone who needs a photo. And what they do is they’ll send out someone like myself who went and signed up for this just just because just to see how it works. And what they do is it’s a it’s a crowdsource crowdsource way of being able to collect those, those photos that you need to have either the property that you’re selling, or the property that you’re going to be working on. And you want to send somebody out beforehand just to get an idea of what you’re going to be working with. And they need that sort of thing. Google Maps and all these different places like that. Show essentially a snapshot in time of what the place looks like. So it makes sense to get a more up to date photo of, you know, of what’s actually going on there. So this company called proxy pics, it’s PR o x, y p ic They make a thing where you can, you know, be either the photographer or the person requesting. And you can also add additional things like if you needed to have someone who has greater skills, such as like, if they’re an inspector, or if they’re lending agent or if they’re a realtor, or there’s a whole bunch of different things on here. For me, I don’t have any of those extra talents. So I just want to take a photo and be done with it. And so one of the things that was There. And I think I saw, I think I saw this show up again, in a tech talk video where someone was saying, like, here’s how to make $50, taking three photos. And I was like, wait, I just saw this before. All right, I’ll go take a look at it. So then I started looking, I was like, This guy made $50, taking three photos of a house. And it’s like this corner, this corner and the front straight ahead, and then submit it through the app, and you’re good to go. Well, Bridget, before we started the show, there was one in particular that was for $23. And you had to take like, I think it was like 20 pictures or something like that at this property. And that one’s already gone. Wow. So it, they got snapped up super quick. So just like with Uber, or Lyft, or any of these rideshare companies, there’s people that can like request to be picked up at a future date, and you can like kind of grab it up in the morning. I’d imagine I’ve never really looked at this in the morning. But it looks like the maybe people post them early in the morning, and then you go and try to like grab them up as quickly as possible. So it’s neat, and it kind of gives you an idea of like, what the property is going to look like and allows the person to, you know, go take the photos, if they need to do inspections, or any of that sort of thing. They can do that too. And, yeah, I, if you like doing photos, this might be something to look at, especially if you live in an area where this is a popular thing, you might be able to make some good money doing it on the side. But if you’re someone who needs a photo, or maybe you’re a realtor, and I’d imagine maybe realtors already know this, and they’re just rolling their eyes like, cool, Jason, thanks for finding the thing that we’ve been using for the last five years. But who knows, but go take a look at it and see if it’s something that would that would help you out and that you’d be able to actually make that happen.

Bridget Willard 56:49
Yeah, that looks rad.

Jason Tucker 56:51
Yeah, it’s free. And they have like, they have an API. So if you wanted to, like tie it into some, you know, something that your company’s using, like you wanted to crowdsource photos for, you know, for your, for your, your mobile app, or whatever, this might be a good way of doing it. But I think if you’re a realtor, especially a realtor that’s pretty small. And you just need a couple photos that then down the road, you’ll go over there with your 360 cameras and all your fun stuff and do all of that. But for this, it’s just like, you just need a good photo on the outside. And yeah, you’re kind of good to go there.

Bridget Willard 57:27
That’s a really good plan.

Jason Tucker 57:29
You know, one thing I was thinking about when we’re kind of doing, doing our shows is we always get all these comments that are that that are probably just a little too late. And I don’t know how like what’s like, for instance, like Warren’s coming in here saying like, you know, great topic, guys. It’s relevant. Like, should I should I show these things? Like what do you guys think in the chat? Is this something I should be like, quickly going through and showing these things at the end of it? Just so you can kind of see what folks were saying? Because sometimes we miss it. Looks like Warren Warren says yes. Oh, no, Bridget’s frozen. Hopefully, I’m not the one frozen.

Yeah, it looks like Bridget. is Bridget frozen. Let me know in the chat, because it looks like she’s frozen to me. If that’s the case, then we’ll close on up.

All right, folks. Well, that’s about it for today, I want to say thank you very much for coming hanging out with us on the show, really appreciate it, you can go over to our website over a day And go check it out. Take a look at the shows that we have available there. We’d really appreciate it. Here’s our outro thanks.

Support us over on Patreon. Go to We’d really appreciate it. Here’s the fine folks that have helped us out. Again, we appreciate you for helping us out over there. little subscribe button make sure you click the bell so you’ll be notified the next time that our shows available. And if you didn’t know this shows available as a podcast so you can actually subscribe to us on Apple podcasts, Google podcasts, Stitcher, YouTube, Spotify, all sorts of things go pretty good. There. We have a good rest your day. talk to y’all later. Bye.

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Bridget Willard

I can’t wait to be back on the podcast!

It is our 5 year anniversary!

Check it out –
EP172 – COVID Resurrected QR Codes. How does This Change Marketing?…

Bridget Willard

October 2015!


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