QR Codes as Emerging Business Trend
Recently mobile marketing got armed with another powerful weapon – Quick Response codes, or, as you might have heard of them, QR codes. The first QR code was created by Toyota subsidiary Denso-Wave in 1994. Back then nobody could imagine that as soon as in around 15 years this invention will cause a real marketing boom all over the world.
Basically this code is a very useful and time-saving tool, it looks like an image that can be scanned with mobile device. From a technical point of view, these are two-dimensional matrix barcodes that contain some unique data (website’s url, contact information etc.). If you are going to use this tool in your campaign than you should know that there are many different QR code generators that can create unique code almost for everything that you want. Second thing you need to know is that this code can be scanned with help of free applications which must be installed on mobile phones.
Audience and Demography
Well, Japan and South Korea are real pioneers in the sphere of implementing QR codes into various spheres of life. Western countries are a bit slower in adopting this technology so far, however they’re catching up fast. The current situation shows that using this marketing tool will be more efficient with tech-savvy audience and youngsters (both of these are the most advanced groups in the new technologies). iOS and Android are most popular mobile operation systems that use QR code scanning and that have the most efficient apps for this purpose. Twitter and Facebook users are the most advanced segments on the web in terms of using QR codes. Given all that, you want to consider adding some additional information about your QR code (what is it, how to use it etc.) before starting QR code campaign. Also you can always experiment with the size, color and design of your QR code in order to better engage the visitors and make them try this technology and then come back for more.
Tips and Techniques
In short, we believe that QR codes can be used as effective marketing weapon for freelance designers and web developers. And here are some ideas that might help you to better understand how you can use QR codes to help your business. You should notice that such campaign will be quite experimental and maybe you won’t achieve positive results instantly, though according to some statistics about campaigns of famous brands like Pepsi-Cola and PlayStation, the usage of QR codes in marketing campaigns is definitely worth trying. Below we’ve tried to give you a short list of possible practices and the results that you may expect to achieve from QR codes.
- Branding and Promotion – you can create a QR code for your resume or portfolio and distribute this code in many different ways. For example you can put it to your business card, Facebook and Twitter profiles, avatar on forums etc. Also you can create a kind of a QR code that will add your phone number and other contact info into the mobile devices of the ones who scan this code. Pretty cool, isn’t it?
- Promos – as a part of your promo you can offer exclusive discount code that would available only via QR code. This may engage your clients and visitors to find out more about this technology and of course will make them want to take part in your promo.
- SEO – distribute QR code allowing free downloads of mobile-related freebies such as wallpapers, free illustrations, photos and other similar stuff with the link to your website.
- SMO – using QR codes to encourage your visitors to share your content on Facebook will give you some extra social media and link juice, make your brand/name more recognizable and may even help to build a community in the long run.
It is hard to predict all benefits that you may expect from using QR codes in your marketing strategy, it all very much depends on your goals, However we assume that in the nearest future we will see more and more original solutions for QR codes’ usage. It is obvious that next generation of barcodes will have more physical space for information and we can only imagine how far this technology may go. It would be a great pleasure to hear about your experience in using QR codes in marketing purposes, so please feel free to tell us about it. Don’t you think that QR codes may change some basic principles of usability theory, including web design usability? There is not much research data concerning this topic today, but we really hope to discuss that with you now.