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QR Codes & Mobile: The Time is Now

By: Guest | March 8, 2011 | 
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Stephanie True Moss, is chief creative officer at True Moss Communications, Inc., a creative design group that offers Web Design | WordPress | Mobile | Print | SEO | Graphic Design | Social Media | QR Code Consulting.

Smart phones are everywhere and so are QR Codes! By now you have seen and may have scanned your share of QR Codes. If you haven’t they can be fun and lead to videos, pictures, mobile information and more that is unveiled with a simple scan.

Every day there are more and more QR codes for things such as:

  • Marketing and information;
  • Customer service and further client engagement;  and
  • Clients and customers choosing to engage with brands, products, restaurants, and companies.
Some smaller brands and companies have adopted QR codes fairly quickly and are having fun doing it. Larger brands and companies have until recently experimented with QR codes as an add-on to current campaigns, slipping them in the corner or at the bottom of printed materials. One major retailer has created a campaign with a QR code as it’s centerpiece and through their marketing efforts, they are educating more consumers about QR codes.
QR codes are the star of Macy’s current “Backstage Pass”. As part of the campaign, Macy’s is running TV commercials and full page newspaper ads starring QR codes front and center, above the fold thus sharing QR codes with the shopping masses. Macy’s has done some heavy lifting for the rest of us in showing how to scan their red QR Code which fits nicely into their familiar star.  They’ve even created a video with instructions.
Now that Macy’s, Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, and other mainstream brands and retailers have embraced QR codes in their marketing, the time is right to look into using them for your business.
What type of information can be encoded in QR Codes?
  • Video:  Directions for putting together that build-it-yourself furniture or kids toys, shelf talkers, real estate home tours, video product demonstrations, music videos, and movie trailers.
  • Maps, geo location: What better way to give directions to restaurants, stores, events, etc. Scan the code and the directions are in the phone and ready to go.
  • Others: Phone numbers for recorded message or SMS opt-in.
  • Email messages or addresses
  • Paypal for instant purchasing and donations.
  • Medical information. Calendar events that load right into your mobile calendar.
  • Social media and location-based services check-ins.
  • Extend brochure and packaging information with QR Codes.
Decrease or eliminate outdated marketing material by putting time-sensitive information into a QR code mobile landing page where it can easily be updated. Include a QR code and the brochure information remains relevant.

The most important aspect of implementation of QR Codes is that they really are a mobile gateway and should be treated as such. Your QR code is not just another way to get people to go to your website. They can open a new line of customer engagement, add a competitive advantage as well as showing innovation.
Now is the time to thoughtfully build your next campaign to include QR codes.

QR Code implementation checklist
  1. Consider the mobile aspect.
  2. Create and prepare what your QR code offering shall be. Is it a video, opt-in for e-newsletters, opt-in of SMS texting, or special content that is only for a mobile landing page. Make sure that the landing component is complete before your QR code goes public.
  3. Determine if you need a single QR code or a multi-QR code campaign.
  4. Choose the right QR code generator – whether DIY or QR code service, analytics are a MUST. Here is a great list.
  5. Generate your code. Add it as is to your marketing materials or style it with color or add some other design effects being careful not to compromise the integrity of the code.
  6. TEST, TEST, TEST and test again before you print your code. Test on multiple mobile phones (Android, iPhone, BlackBerry, etc.) using multiple QR code scanners. Perhaps even a short, quick print proof to test the code in it’s final state.
  7. Add a sentence or two of scanning directions and where to get a QR scanning app.
Plan QR code campaigns that will leave your customers delighted with the thrill of the hunt!

Stephanie True Moss, is chief creative officer at True Moss Communications, Inc. a creative design group that offers Web Design | WordPress | Mobile | Print | SEO | Graphic Design | Social Media | QR Code Consulting. She loves Cortona, Italy and is a QR code blogger & speaker from Atlanta. She works with clients in Atlanta, New York, Miami and across the country. Stephanie started tweeting and blogging about QR codes and when few people in the United States were even aware of them. It has been her focus to help increase the use of QR codes in the US through education and best practices. Stephanie is the editor at QRmedia.us. You can follow her QR code tweets.
11 comments
NancyM.
NancyM.

I think QR codes are a very effective method for businesses to communicate whatever they want. They are new and appealing and offer easy delivery of any piece of information because they can be put anywhere. Imagine promoting a video in the corner of your businesses banner for example.

youscanme
youscanme

Hello, we believe that QR codes will make the connection between offline and online worlds easier. That’s why we created our QR code generator with social features – YouScan.me - http://www.youscan.me. You can add all your info like Facebook profile or fan page, twitter, youtube, etc. and connect with others. Cheers

andisie
andisie

See how eEvent.com uses QR Codes for your profile id, ticketing and flyer id. eEvent started from the QR Coded project late 2008. It helps bridge online-to-offline world, save cost and go green.

WSI4Marketing
WSI4Marketing

I agree! We will see tremendous growth in the use of QR codes during 2011, including many uses we haven't yet thought of. Have you taken a look at Microsoft Tags? How do you think they compare to QR Code?

SocialQRCode
SocialQRCode

2011 is going to be the year of the QR Code for marketers. Next time you create a QR Code, try www.SocialQRCode.com. It is designed for businesses to generate QR Codes and mobile landing pages for their businesses social properties. Create a landing page with a Facebook "Like" button or Twitter "Follow" button. Users can also create a mobile coupon that is sharable on Facebook and Twitter!

Give it a try and let us know what you think!

CandiceStone
CandiceStone

Thanks for the 411 on QR Codes. Been seeing them everywhere all of a sudden!

Justicewordlaw
Justicewordlaw

This was a very insightful blog post right here as I have seen a big increase in a lot of brands using QR Codes a lot more now a days. This is a very beneficial way of attracting more business and taking your customers experience with your company a bit more further as well which is always good. I have not yet chosen to do a QR Code but I know that is not that far from the list to do. Thanks for sharing some of the information here.

truemc
truemc

@WSI4Marketing It has been amazing to watch the growth in QR Code use that has already occurred and yet so many people still haven't a clue about QR Codes. There is still a lot of excitement ahead for QR Codes!

Microsoft Tags are fun and colorful and can be mistaken for an interesting art element. They require a proprietary scanner that the user may not have, but once they download that scanner, the Microsoft Tags can offer a similar end user experience.

I prefer QR Codes, they are easier to spot, and readable from hundreds of different apps on most all smart phone platforms.

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