Marketers strive to keep up with the latest technology developments that help them reach potential customers effectively. Quick Response Codes or QR codes have become a powerful marketing force connecting the physical world to the Web.
A QR code is a specific two-dimensional code readable by a dedicated QR bar code reader camera phone or smartphone. Once scanned users may receive text URL or other data.
With QR codes you may invite prospects to find out more about your product or service as they browse through your print material (business cards direct mail and special offer leaflets). Once scanned the user will end up somewhere –you should decide whether to take your user to a specific landing page on your website or on your Facebook Business Page for example. You can also put discount codes on a product and send users to an online site where they may place an order.
Companies are finding innovative ways of using QR codes in their business process. A transport organisation has put QR codes on bus stops subway stations and train stations – passengers get real-time information on when the next bus would arrive just by scanning the QR code. Some cafeterias have also included a QR code on their cups or napkins encouraging users to ‘Like’ their page on Facebook. Some have even encouraged their customers to leave online reviews.
|HomePlus Virtual Stores. (Image source: Springwise)|
Home Plus Tesco’s branch in Korea has developed a ground-breaking idea on how to encourage sales via QR codes. It launched a number of virtual stores on subway platforms enabling customers to make purchases via their smartphones while waiting for the train. These stores were built on backlit billboards displaying pictures of foodstuff normally found at the physical shop. QR codes were placed next to each product image allowing people to automatically add the merchandise to a virtual basket by scanning the QR code. Their order would then be delivered to the commuter’s door once they returned home. As reported on springwise.com Home Plus increased online sales by 130% with over 10 000 customers trying the QR stores.QR codes are a pioneering way of marrying the marketer’s offline efforts with online initiatives. If well planned monitored and measured a QR Code campaign may encourage quick responses from end users generating sales and encouraging business growth. ICON has launched local QR code initiatives and has positively linked this marketing technique with improved online usage. Innovation is key to success and QR codes are a great opportunity for local marketers to reach out to users in a non-traditional manner.