Are QR Codes the Next Big Thing in Shopper Marketing?

Still in its infancy here in the States; major brands see the potential of the technology

In this week’s issue of AdAge, reporter Natalie Zmuda writes about QR Codes Gaining Prominence, with the likes of Target, Best Buy, Macy’s and Post Cereals embracing the technology.  A pretty impressive group to be sure – but just the tip of the iceberg as the technology gains greater acceptance through a concerted effort to educate the consumer.

PowerDirect's own QR code points prospects to our website.

Originally used for tracking parts in vehicle manufacturing, QR (or quick-response) codes are becoming more widely used in marketing for a broad range of brand initiatives that provide mobile access not only to special offers and discounts, but also to more informative content such as product ratings and reviews, How-To guides and product-specific videos.  These two dimensional barcodes are appearing anywhere and everywhere – on billboards, in-store displays, event ticketing and tracking, business cards, print ads,  direct mail campaigns, websites, email marketing, and couponing. Marketers are realizing that the possibilities are endless.

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Front-door media is yet another ideal medium for QR code implementation – providing a way to influence shoppers early on their path to purchase, supporting shopping decisions and lists made in the home with high-value offers delivered directly to the front porch.  For example, imagine bypassing the mailbox and the other clutter of a prospect’s daily life and delivering a branded message along with a product sample or a special offer to the front doors of a targeted group of prospects.  On this marketing piece is a QR code that takes the customer to a website where they can quickly view the product in action, learn more about it and even purchase it online. Perhaps the QR code takes the customer to an added incentive meant to drive traffic to a brick and mortar retail location.  Working with other pieces of the marketing program, this delivery method adds a personal touch and incentive the consumer’s brand experience.

Have you been eager to test QR codes as part of your overall strategy? Are you looking for the ability to measure response rates with a high level of accuracy? Are you ready for a simple, inexpensive way to explore the potential of QR codes?  Front-door marketing may be just the ticket.