Unless you have been hiding under a rock for the last few years, you will have probably heard that QR Codes are becoming the latest technology trend. But what are QR codes used for, exactly, and why are they important to you? Here we shine the spotlight on the most up and coming digital trend that is having a huge impact on advertising and society.
What are QR codes used for?
Put simply, Quick Response codes (QR codes) are two-dimensional barcodes that can only be read by devices dedicated to QR reading (such as Smartphones). Thanks to the incredible power of modern technology, these devices can connect a QR Code directly to phone numbers, texts, emails, and websites. With 85% of 16-75 year olds owning or having access to a smartphone[i] QR codes are creating a significant effect in marketing, advertising, and customer service with product information just a simple scan away. In a time-starved, hectic world, one of the biggest appeals of QR codes is that that they are incredibly easy to set up and offer super-fast response mechanisms.
When it comes to QR code uses and how valuable QR codes can be to marketing, the list really is limitless. QR codes can offer almost any type of information in a variety of formats such as regular text, URLs, PDFs and even banking information. From welcome messages for conferences to menu reading to accessing your credit card information, QR codes have a wide variety of benefits.
Wondering how to use QR codes in your marketing? Here are just a few of the most common ways:
Directing customers to your website – One of the most effective uses of QR codes is to direct potential customers to a landing page. This may include a signup page, a campaign page, or even a product directory. The only limit here is your imagination.
Providing immediate freebies and offers – Printed vouchers are one thing but delivering offers to directly to your customers’ mobile wallet is another. QR codes can also take customers directly to an online store where a discount can be already applied at a check out. Turkish Airlines used this kind of QR code marketing during the London Olympics. They placed posters containing QR codes in London bus stops. People who scanned the code were automatically entered into a competition to win free plane tickets to various holiday destinations. Because QR codes reduce time and effort, they attract a lot more customers. Investing in poster printing to display your QR codes is a great use of marketing resources.
Directing customers to social media pages – Did you know that 92% of consumers[ii] look at online reviews when they are searching for local services or businesses? QR codes can help you to turn your biggest customers into your biggest company advocates. By placing a QR code on your product packages, you can include a brief message on your packaging encouraging customers to scan the code and leave a review of your business.
Inventive QR Code Uses
Now that you are aware of the benefits of using QR codes, you are probably thinking of all the wonderful ways you can use them to supercharge your marketing campaigns. To help you out, we’ve made a list of some of the most inventive ways to make the most of using QR codes:
Easy Access to WiFi
Asked for the WiFi password a couple of times? Typed it wrong? A QR code can connect you with just one simple scan.
Quick Access for Shoppers
QR codes can provide shoppers with quick access to recipes that include ingredients that you stock. Many restaurants and coffee shops are doing this effectively by placing QR codes directly onto their takeaway cups. Another excellent example of this is in Tesco in Korea where they have created a virtual store for smartphone users in a subway. While customers are waiting for a train, they can use their Smartphone’s QR code reader to add items to their shopping lists.
Better Customer Engagement
The more you engage with your customers, the more they will engage with your business! QR codes can allow you to give your customers a digital extra such as information, lucky draws, and games. You can also use QR codes to offer your clients a discount for filling in a survey.
QR codes may be a new way of marketing to you, but they are quickly making a name for themselves in the mainstream market for helping businesses to attract more customers from the market.
Parrett, G., 2017. UK public are ‘glued to smartphones’ as device adoption reaches new heights. [Online]
Available at: https://www2.deloitte.com/uk/en/pages/press-releases/articles/uk-public-glued-to-smartphones.html
[Accessed 24 September 2020].
Swetland, C., 2018. 2018 Review Marketing Statistics [Infographic]. [Online]
Available at: https://www.revlocal.com/blog/review-and-reputation-management/2018-review-marketing-statistics-infographic
[Accessed 24 September 2020].