I wrote a blog post a while back entitled Politics – Stay Out Of It!.
It was right after the 2016 election cycle and people on both sides of the political spectrum were divided like never before. I advised Business people to stay out of the fray. Because, everyone has their own opinions, and some you will not agree with. But for the most part, if you are a business you will do business with anyone who wants to pay you or buy your products. (Within reason of course, not speaking of hate groups or the like)
So now, I am bringing up the same topic again. We just had the most contentious Supreme Court hearings ever. Once again both sides are so divided. So again I am giving the same advice. In terms of your business website and social media accounts, stay out of politics.(Unless of course you are a political adviser, or commentator makes a living off of politics)
Succeeding in many businesses today means having a broad appeal. You want to take in as much business as possible. Can you imagine if Amazon before they would allow you to purchase asked what your political views were? Of course they wouldn’t, and this of course is a silly example. At the same time, the point is valid, get business from everyone you can, and maximize your profits. This of course is simple economics, but it is something that can be affected by something as simple as a post which many of your potential customers/clients find offensive. The last thing your business needs is to be boycotted.
Personally, I even advised clients to stay out of the fray on their personal social media accounts. The reason is simple, a lot of times you get referrals and recommendations from friends & contacts on social media. Now if you alienate people, you are probably eliminating half your referral sources, at least among your friends and contacts.
Social media has allowed people to spread their views far and wide. It Is one of the truly great things about being an American with free-speech. But that isn’t what this post is about. I am taking a look strictly from a business standpoint. So yes, while you’ll certainly have a right to let your feelings be known, as a small business it certainly isn’t advisable and not a great marketing strategy.
I went for a walk the other day and went by a few houses for sale. Some of them even had URLs on their signs. But none had a simple QR code. Someone driving by could just click on it go right to the webpage and learn more about the property. I figured maybe this was just an anomaly, but over the last week I’ve been driving around and I did not see a single QR code on any signs.
Let me take a step back. For those of you who are not aware of what a QR code is, I will explain. QR codes are Quick Response codes. These are barcodes, that can be read by free apps on your smartphone. The barcode example on this page takes you to my website. They can send someone to a website, and perform many more functions. Here is a list of the functions a QR code can do.
Google Maps Location
App Store Download
Digital Business Card
Wifi Login (Android Only)
Paypal Buy Now Link
So why would a real estate company not put a QR code on their signs? I can’t really answer that, truthfully it boggles the mind. My guess is when real estate markets are strong, they get a bit lazy. The problem is this isn’t hard, you generate a code in seconds. You can go to free sites like: http://www.qrstuff.com/ or http://www.qr-code-generator.com/.
In business, there are few things that are free. So when something free and beneficial comes your way, take advantage of it. And this just doesn’t apply to Realtors. Here are some examples:
I put a barcode on my business cards. I know other people that link to a vCard so somebody not only gets their cards, but they automatically add this person to their address book. That is a valuable commodity. With a business card you keep them for a while and typically throw them away. But if you’ve added that person to your address book chances are it’s going stay there for a while.
Are you a business that sends snail mail or hands out paper flyers? Then consider this: You can send somebody your flyer with the picture and all the information about your product and then have a barcode which takes them to PayPal to buy your product (see image).
Do you do email marketing? Say you are having a sale. Use a barcode with a google map. They can then take their phone and grab map and navigate to your sale.
Bottom Line: Real Estate companies absolutely need to use QR codes on signs and marketing collateral. But your business, no matter what it is, can benefit as well. If you have any questions, you can always contact us for assistance.