Use cross-media potentials with QR codes
The potentials of the two-dimensional codes are enormous: be it a website link, a business card or a product comparison – with the help of QR codes, all contents can be encrypted. This means that every advertising medium can be enriched with additional content, and the boundaries between advertising materials become blurred into a cross-media experience. This QR Codes bridge the gap between analog and digital world. (3) The consumer then only has to scan the code with a corresponding QR code reader and the software decodes it. The gap between what is technically possible and what is currently in use is huge – one of many reasons for QR Code campaigns on the mobile marketing experts from the bam! interactive marketing GmbH.
QR codes are becoming increasingly popular
QR codes – these are the rectangles with black and white areas that have been increasingly found on advertisements, posters, brochures, brochures, business cards or food packaging for a few years now. These two-dimensional markers are usually printed in the form of QR codes on advertising media of any shape in order to enrich them with additional content. Not without reason, according to a study by the global market research institute ComScore, because in the meantime the awareness of these codes has increased significantly. Almost 20 percent of German smartphone owners are already scanning these codes, mainly to obtain product information, event information or a voucher. (1) However, users are still too often disappointed: reasons for non-use consist mainly in the lack of added value and too few applications. (2)
The success story: from the EAN code to the QR code
The result is the two-dimensional code especially from the well-known EAN codes on the back of each product box. The additional level of data encoding allows QR codes to encode much more information. These codes, which were developed in Japan back in 1994, actually served to mark logistics components within the automotive production of Toyota vehicles. At that time, the code was designed by Denso Wave as a matrix of white and black rectangular components and allowed the encryption of 4,000 alphanumeric characters. (4) The trick: QR codes have a built-in error correction, which can destroy almost one third of the code and yet a decoding is possible. It is precisely this error correction that makes use of brands and places the brand logo in the middle of the personalization code.
With strategic planning to success
However, a centrally placed logo is of little importance for a successful QR code campaign. Rather, a comprehensive strategic planning is required and the consideration of some key points: So the QR code should only provide value-added and location-related content. At the same time, despite the greater awareness, the explanation for the user is still required, what he has to do. The user should not be any more annoyed than if, after successful scanning of the QR code, he does not get to a mobile website, but to a conventional stationary website. Therefore, the following elements should also be considered strategically to prevent media breaks. At the same time, a fallback variant should always exist, for example via a shortcode. The size and positioning of the code should be determined depending on the intended place of use and the context of use. The use of QR Codes in subway stations can be a major problem if there is no internet connection. (5)
QR Code campaigns: a real added value
QR code campaigns offer great potential, on the one hand to digitally extend offline advertising space, and on the other to better understand target groups and their behavior. Therefore, it is recommended to track every single QR code and analyze its efficiency; when, where and how intensively the contents behind QR codes were used. With comprehensive tracking, optimization potential can be quickly identified and existing content can be improved behind QR codes. In addition, the future use of QR Codes in marketing campaigns can benefit enormously through these analyzes.
In order to keep track of all aspects of a successful QR Code campaign and to ensure smooth processes, experience and expertise in the areas of mobile marketing and QR Codes are a prerequisite. The experts of the bam! interactive marketing GmbH can successfully solve any QR Code challenge with their support. Only then can it be ensured that low value-added content is no longer a reason for non-use.