1/16/2012 5:03 PM
Mobile barcodes are turning up everywhere – buses, magazines, television, bar coasters. According to research published last fall, 14 million U.S. mobile phone users scanned QR or barcodes in June alone, mostly via newspapers, magazines and product packaging, both at home and in-store. Research data reveals that barcodes that offer access to a discount or coupon or that allow the consumer to learn more about a product or service are the most popular.
Please note that 2 types of code you may encounter. The original QR code is a black and white coat that consists out of many black squares. The big difference is that the information to be read is contained in this code. The other code is and as tags by Microsoft. These are, for all tags mostly consisting of triangles but customization is easy to accomplish and all you may see is simply colorful dots. The Microsoft system is database driven, which means that when the code is read your mobile device will retrieve the appropriate information from a database. The advantage of this system is that the information displayed can be changed without changing a printed code.
Given that mobile barcodes are finally becoming part of our marketing culture, they have enormous potential to present your company with unexpectedly brilliant results. Here are five mobile barcode best practices to help ensure a successful campaign.
1. Use Everywhere
mobile barcodes can be incorporated into all digital and traditional media so that a consumer has an all-encompassing experience with the mobile campaign. This also ensures that the barcode is at the heart of a campaign and not simply an add-on.
2. Drive Value and Make it Easy
you need to offer exclusive access to discounts giveaways and free tickets to compound a consumer to scan and interact with your code. Quite often the code is used to simply display a website or play a video. The bad experience the consumer has should be dynamic. interactive and exclusive.
Take into account where a mobile barcode is located on the ad. Consumers must be able to find it easily and scan it quickly. For outdoor ads, place the code at eye or arm-level. In a print ad, the barcode should not fall over a fold as this will hamper scanning. Be sure to leave some white space around the mobile barcode, and use a minimum of 1 x 1-inch print specification. Even though courts have been tried for TV and cinema it is tricky as the code has to remain on the screen for long enough for the viewer to launch the scanning application and scan the code. As it's time for screen commercials is limited display of the coat is often not feasible.
3. Simple is Better
Branded or custom QR codes are popping up more often, but it’s also important to create a code everyone can recognize. Producing your QR code in black and white checkered format will increase the number of phones and code readers that can scan it. Also, ensure you use global, open standards to maximize universal customer reach and impact.
4. Build Customer Affinity
Remember that the consumer who has just scanned your code is on the move. She will be viewing the brand content on a mobile screen and, therefore, expects instant results. Make sure the barcode links through to a mobile-enabled site rather a PC-designed site. Remember that “dead links” (codes that go nowhere or deliver the wrong information) are the equivalent of a slammed door — the consumer will not try again.
Make sure to test your QR or MS tech codes before you publish them. You may also want to test your codes across a variety of different devices before launching. Some blackberry devices are known to have some issues with the scanning. You want to minimize any negative experiences with the scanning.
5. Account for Objectives and Analytics
every campaign should have a goal. You can boost sales, increase customer engagement, build brand loyalty, or educate your audience. Whatever the campaign objective, be sure to define its goals before integrating a mobile barcode. It is important to find a way of monitoring your campaign. It is easy with MS tags as this functionality is provided by Microsoft. Simply log into the control panel [tag.Microsoft.com] and used the provided reports. For QR codes I recommend to use short URLs like Bit.ly or goo.gl. This way you can track how often the code was scanned. Following these practices will help analyze mobile ad spending and increase the success and ROI of your future QR code campaigns.
If you want to know more of about how to use QR Codes or MS Tags just contact me.