Make room for the next big thing QR codes. Whats a QRcode? Its essentially a wacky looking, matrix barcode users scan with a camera-enabledsmart phone. Scanning the QR code connects the user to a mobile-optimized webpage, video or photographs or activates functions such as email, SMS and IM.The free QR codes are simple to produce, distribute and display.
QRcodes, also known as Quick Response codes, were invented in 1994 by aToyota subsidiary, Denson-Wave. QR codes are well known in Japan and SouthKorea. Recently, QR codes have created a buzz among US marketing specialists. Inthe US, well known companies such as Macys, Best Buy and Post Cereals use themto enhance their marketing campaigns.
The Nielsen Company forecasts, by the end of 2011, more thanhalf of all US citizens will own a phone capable of scanning QR codes. The userjust needs to add a phone app. QR codes are appearing in major printpublications, on buildings and storefronts. In the US, the demystification of QR codes hasa ways to go but it wont be too long before theyre immediately recognized,understood and scanned by US consumers of all ages, shapes and sizes.
Ways Your Business canTake Advantage of QR Codes
Savvy marketers use QR codes to drive customers to aspecific web page. Simply placing a QR code in a print add is not enough. Grabthe consumers attention with an enticing call-to-action statement placed nextto the QR code. For example scan for a great offer or scan to win aprize. Dont harm your brand with adisappointing offer or prize. If you do it right theyll eagerly come back toyour website. Something to think about: Why should the audience take the timeto scan my code?
Americans like freebies. Entice consumers to complete yourmobile-friendly survey with giveaways. Whats the objective? With theirpermission, gather their email addresses for additional marketing messages. Surveyscan lead to sales.
- Provide additional company and product information with Quick Response codes on product packages and literature.
- Use QR codes in print ads to bring traffic to focused information on your website.
- QR codes linked to videos can help bring your products to life.
- Its not common, but some companies design a QR code to automatically dial a predetermined telephone number. Before using this bold marketing technique, think about this: From the consumers perspective, whats in it for me?
- Linking a QR code to a desirable coupon entices users to scan the code. The coupon is automatically saved on the users mobile phone, providing the user an easy way to keep the coupon. They can also provide a copy to friends, aka consumers.
- Quick Response codes properly placed in retail stores make it easy for customers to sign up and become part of the stores social community.
- You can provide access to user manuals in an array of languages through a QR code link.
Where to Place QRCodes
QR codes can be printed on almost anything. Marketersincorporate QR codes with billboard ads, posters, in-store displays, businesscards, contests, print ads, direct mail campaigns, coupons, email marketingetc.
For major events, put your QR codes on all your promotionalmaterial such as stickers, flyers, press kits, merchandise tags etc. Use aplug-and-play CMS to update the landing page throughout an event.
Create your own QR codes for free at websites such as at Kaywa.com and rasoftwarefactory.com.Learn how to make attention grabbing, attractive QR codes.
Set up your QR code and the associated mobile webpage withanalytics. Now youll be able to follow and optimize your campaign. Youlllearn how many scans a Quick Response code gained and how long the average userspends at your website. You can measure how advertisements containing QR codesare driving your sales.
Expand Your Social MediaAudience
Design a QR code to connect directly to your companys Twitterstream or Facebook page – it provides users the opportunity to follow orlike your company.
Near FieldCommunication (NFC)
NFCis a wireless communication technology which lets devices exchange data overdistances of about ten centimeters. Google uses a mobile payment system,relying on NFC. Google stated theyre exploring new ways to enable customersto quickly and easily find information about local businesses from their mobilephones. Some experts in the field suggest Google will someday push businessesto use NFC for some of their communications.
For now, the QR code is the hot marketing tool. When usedeffectively, QR codes gain the attention of customers and produce sales. Theyalso help your company maintain a modern image.