Scan and win free tournament tickets, avail exciting offers, download free music, and more – QR codes have certainly become marketing ninjas for companies. They help you get new customers, increase sales, and enhance brand exposure.
The commercial QR code applications have literally overshadowed the less-creative-more-useful purposes of QR codes like embedding instructional information. However, attempts from a few companies show how QR codes can be used with products/devices to offer better customer services.
A consumer stopped at an attractive QR code outside a storefront window; took out his Smartphone and scanned the code in anticipation. Much to his despair, the code redirected him to a ho-hum company website which had nothing specific to offer.
The great noise about QR codes as a marketing tool falls flat when companies with no web presence or an informative landing page ask their customers to scan a code. Faulty experimentation with QR codes often leads a user to a wrong web page; or a full-fledged desktop website that doesn’t support flash videos and contains images which cannot be viewed on a cell phone; and worst of all – to a page which does not exist at all! Thanks to these QR code slips, techies have left no stone unturned in tarnishing the image of QR code technology and predicting its doomed future. However, recent efforts from Bond No. 9 and Beefeater have shown that it’s too early to forecast how much QR codes can achieve.
Theme-based QR Code Campaigns in the Making
The QR Code on the creative shrink sleeve will take consumers to an interactive social media page and highlight the creative campaign [Image Courtesy: Coley Porter Bell]
As new technology hits the market, its watchdogs study the movement to understand how deep the technology has penetrated or how badly it is rejected by the audience. The number game affects a lot of business analysts and is a key factor in deciding whether the technology will be adopted by companies on a mass level or not. QR code technology is no different. First used in Japan in 1994, the QR code technology has spread itself across businesses and is slowly replacing the traditional 1D barcodes used by manufacturers.
According to the leading postage firm, Pitney Bowes, on an average “15% of people have used a QR code” across the US, UK, France, and Germany in 2012. However, the usage across the US (19%) exceeds that in the UK (15%) and other European countries surveyed. High QR code usage stems from the fact that almost a third of the population in the US owns a Smartphone – a handy way to scan a QR code. Brands and communicators can tap the myriad benefits of QR codes and reach out to consumers who want more access to detailed information about products, schemes, offers, and rewards through this relatively inexpensive tool. Continue reading