Image by codesyntax
There are so many ways to engage your audience with your brand these days. No longer is it enough to buy some ad space in a newspaper or set up a website. The tried and true measures of yesteryear are gradually being muscled out by online and digital options.
So what should you do to encourage your target demographic to connect with your brand? Chances are you have heard of QR (Quick Response) codes.
You know? Those peculiar square bar-codes that you see scattered about in all sorts of locations. Well, hopefully we can help you to discern whether QR codes can help you increase engagement with the consumer.
What Are They?
QR codes can be scanned by Smartphone’s to lead to a web link, social media site or any other piece of online content. Once the QR code reader app has been downloaded it is relatively simple to scan codes and saves on the thumb gymnastics of entering a long URL on a mobile device.
- They’re more convenient for your user to scan than typing in a URL, assuming they have already downloaded a scanning application.
- They’re cheap and versatile, and open up lots of ways to be creative and fun.
- They aren’t the most reliable methods of data delivery. Get a smudge on your QR or glare from the sun, and most phones will be unable to pick up the intricate lines of code that make up its strange pixelated appearance.
- They can’t hold much data. The more characters the code has to represent, the more cluttered those strands of squares and white spaces become, making it more difficult for the phone to scan.
- They aren’t all that popular. The fact is, though you can find QR codes everywhere, from billboards and buildings, to famous pieces of art to the side of your coffee cup, QR codes aren’t as widely used by the consumer as you may think, though the number of people willing to scan is steadily growing.
Points to Consider
- Think carefully about where you are going to position the code as size and clarity matter greatly when it comes to the device’s ability to pick up the data.
- Keep your link short. This will stop your code from getting cluttered. Use a link shortener like bit.ly to lose as many characters as possible.
- Think about what you are offering. Does the QR code link to something mobile friendly? Is the content unique? What is the hook that makes scanning the code worthwhile for the consumer?
I know this sounds like I’m getting down on QR codes, but really I’m not. After all, they’re cheap, they’re fun, and they could open another channel to engage your audience with. As their popularity grows they will become even more useful for publicising your brand.
Just make sure that your other channels are just as strong. Used in tandem, your website, social media, digital media and print media can create effective engagement. Don’t depend too heavily on any one element. A harmonious relationship, with a touch of creative experimentation, is the right road to success.
- License: Creative Commons image source
Grant is a writer for K3 Retail. He has a particular love for sci-fi, hardcore punk and Bruce Willis movies, and any combination of the three.