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QR Codes Kill Kittens: How to Alienate Customers, Dishearten Employees, and Drive Your Business into the Ground Hardcover – October 7, 2013

43 customer reviews

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QR Codes Kill Kittens: How to Alienate Customers, Dishearten Employees, and Drive Your Business into the Ground + UnMarketing: Stop Marketing. Start Engaging + The Book of Business Awesome / The Book of Business UnAwesome
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

From the Author: Scott Stratten - The Kittens Are Counting On You

Think Before You QR Code
Think Before You QR Code

I don’t know where this QR code takes me when scanned, I wish I did. I tried to follow the “three easy steps” but I feel like one important step is missing.

Step 0.5: Don’t put QR code behind GIANT BAR

The code is unscannable. It’s taking up valuable space, looking fancy and modern, and doing absolutely nothing. This is my main issue with QR codes and so many of the things we try in business - they just don’t work. We need to be thinking about functionality for our customers. Did you know that 50% of people who scan a QR code would never scan one again? You know why? Because they didn’t work. They didn’t bring value. They made people jump through an unnecessary and all to often non-functioning hoop.

Stop it.

Those Poor Kittens
Those Poor Kittens

Step 1. Put QR code on door

Step 2. Make the code small enough that people need to get really close to scan it.

Step 3. As they approach, have the door automatically open into the person.

Step 4. Profit...

Where QR Codes Belong
Where QR Codes Belong

Twenty years ago, QR codes were created for manufacturers. They were better options than bar codes when a lot of information needed to be shared.

They are still used for this purpose in many industries today.

So, if you see a QR code in your toilet, that’s exactly where it belongs.

From the Inside Flap

The kittens are counting on you.

If you knew that your terrible business decisions could cost a kitten its life, would you still do it? Of course not. No one wants to hurt a kitten, and no one wants to damage their own business through easily avoidable mistakes. But the trick is knowing which things are the wrong things to do.

Experts are constantly telling us how to improve our businesses. Hundreds of books on the market are filled with advice from these experts. But how can you filter out all of the bad advice, misinformation, and misuse of business tools that's waiting for you out there? None of us needs another list of what we should be doing. QR Codes Kill Kittens tells you what not to do—with advice that's easy to digest on mistakes that are easy to avoid.

It's like a picture book for the fed-up.

Using real-life examples from human resources, marketing, branding, networking (in person and online), public relations, and customer service, QR Codes Kill Kittens offers tips and guidance on how to prevent slip-ups such as:

  • Using QR codes, and other bright and shiny technologies, because you can, and not because you should
  • Insulting, ignoring, and generally avoiding those "pesky" customers
  • Trying to profit from world events, disasters, and other self-interested social media practices
  • Thinking we can automate authenticity
  • Focusing on what's next, instead of working on fixing what you're doing now
  • And so many more cringe-worthy errors in judgment

It doesn't do you any good to do a few things right and a lot of things wrong. Find out what not to do. If reading this book saves just one kitten's life, it's worth it.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (October 7, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118732758
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118732755
  • Product Dimensions: 5.3 x 0.7 x 7.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #604,405 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Don Snyder on October 6, 2013
Format: Hardcover
After thoroughly enjoying Scott Stratten's first book UnMarketing: Stop Marketing. Start Engaging and recommending it to all my marketing friends, and having the opportunity to preview his second work The Book of Business Awesome / The Book of Business UnAwesome, I've been waiting for THIS book ever since I saw a video of the author using the line on stage in front of a live audience. If you've seen the video, you knew there just HAD to be a book.

While it's not exactly what I was expecting (a Marketing picture book??) QR Codes Kill Kittens: How to Alienate Customers, Dishearten Employees, and Drive Your Business into the Ground doesn't disappoint! If you're in advertising or marketing, you've probably shared examples of some of the ridiculous marketing practices captured in this book (and have probably perpetrated more than a few of them!)

My advice is to get at least three copies of this book:
1. A copy for the boss who keeps asking you to DO the things in this book.
2. A copy for the client who comes asking for a QR code or help automating their Tweets.
3. For yourself -- keep it on your desk as sort of a DIY marketing intervention.

But most importantly stop getting distracted by every new marketing-thinga-ma-jig that happens to cross your browser and blind you with Shiny.

...SQUIRREL!!!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on October 15, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a fast, must-read for anyone in marketing. We've all had the boss/client who asks for ridiculous things and wants to make a "viral video". You will laugh. You will snicker. You will identify with just about every page. Buy this book. It's on the money, and it's hilarious.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on January 27, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I watched the youtube video by Scott Stratten about this topic. In the video, he mentioned that this book would be coming out, so I pre ordered it. The book doesn't really add anything that one couldn't get from youtube video.

The book is pretty bad. There are several pages, easily over 20, when there is maybe two or three sentences and a picture. These combined end up taking up less than half the page. There really is just tons of white space in the book. I really was hoping that this book would go into great detail, maybe with a few more statistics or examples, but nope. Just watch the youtube video. It's free, and you get the benefit of Scott's pretty good comedic timing.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By L. Komidar on October 10, 2013
Format: Hardcover
This book was introduced to us at our conference (hey Scott thanks for coming to #heweb13!). I think that everyone who works internet technology, marketing, office protocol...oh, anyone who works, should read this book. Sometimes we get too caught up looking at that "bigger picture" that we forget the roots of why we exist. I've deleted my QR scanner...have you?
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By R. on October 19, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I love unmarketing. I love Scott. But frankly I think I just wasted ten bucks. It took me about an hour to get through this book, with three kids under the age of five to distract me. Useful examples, but nothing really new. This could be useful to show examples of nonsense to a boss or manager that doesn't know what they are doing, but that's about it.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By L. Skrocki on October 18, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Hilarious, frightening, entertaining, informative and drives home the point to *really* think about marketing campaign execution as well as day-to-day brand conversations to protect them from senseless mistakes and you from unnecessary embarrassment.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Kenn Petersen on October 11, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Scott Strattan’s newest book "QR Codes Kill Kittens" is one of the best travel books I have read so far, or I should say a book for in-flight travel, you can read it when you travel by plane, especially when you fly economy class, a DASH 8 or CRJ 200. You can buy it on Kindle, but personally I love a printed book. It is a breezy ready and you can easily read it from take off to landing, you don't have to switch it off.

It’s small 1/2-inch book and can be read on a local return flight with a total duration of 2 hours.

I know because I got the book minutes before flying to Europe. You’ll know what I mean if you’ve ever tried to read The New York Times on economy class. The space just isn’t there.

It’s an entertaining book to read, you can accuse Scott of crowdsourcing the content and making it such an easy book to digest. If I have to complain of something: the overhead lights in a plane can make it difficult to read the small print, or it might just be my age.

It is strange to write a book focused on QR codes, and yes, that is the focus, and somehow if I have to criticize the book in any way is that Scott should have followed the line 100% and not deviated a couple of times to other stupid things a marketer can do. Also more editing and a few more stories would make it better. But six more months might have made QR codes obsolete anyway and now Scott will get some money to feed all the hungry kittens that have survived.

Is it worth 10 bucks? Depends. It’s similarly priced to Scott’s other books, and you will learn more starting with “Unmarketing.”

But if you avoid making some of the mistakes, or boil it down to one: don’t use QR codes, you will have saved more than 10 bucks of marketing investment. And the guy sitting next to you on the plane will end up asking you what you are reading, since your are smiling all the way.
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