10 creative ways to use the mighty QR code

Make the most of the mighty QR code: ideas for marketing and promotion

QR codes have been around for more than a decade but people have become more used to using this technology during the pandemic.

As well as registering your presence at the supermarket, using a QR code can be used as a clever strategy to boost customer experience and draw them further down the sales funnel.

Take a look at some QR code info, plus tips to use them for marketing and customer interaction.

What are QR codes?

The QR, or quick response code, was invented back in 1994 by a Japanese automotive company. It’s essentially a faster and higher capacity form of barcode. The genius application came when companies started using them in their advertising to send people quickly and easily to an app or website.

Before the pandemic people didn’t really understand QR codes. Many found them a little confusing and unnecessary. Now, with the necessity of checking in at public locations, the public has become accustomed to opening the camera on their phone, scanning a QR code and quickly accessing their digital destination.

Why use QR codes?

QR codes are quick, reliable and can link to almost any online destination you want. Much faster and more reliable than standard barcodes, they are the obvious choice for a tech-savvy future.

Give your customers a QR code and they don’t have to fiddle around on their mobile and type in ‘www.longandconfusingaddress.com’. This is helpful for people of all ages and abilities.

You can make the link in your QR code trackable, meaning you can gather information about how often and where they are used. This way it is very easy to see how successful your QR codes are and measure traction for a particular campaign.

Companies and organisations around the world have jumped on the trend to make QR codes work for them.

L’Oréal Paris created its ‘Tap and Try’ virtual campaign.’ A QR code at points of sale and in other promotional materials led to an app or website that allows people to see how the tones of hair dye and other cosmetic products suited them. This was a stroke of genius in our current germ-phobic environment (note that pink hair definitely doesn’t suit the Honeycomb team!)

Nike has used QR codes in a campaign to create custom shoes and tailored content.

On a more practical level, the Boston Marathon used QR codes to hold a virtual marathon in 2020 when the proper event was unable to take place. This event drew in competitors from around the world, who received special race packs after signing up and used QR codes to access information.

Make QR codes work for you

With all of the benefits of QR codes, it only makes sense to have them work for your brand. Here are ten simple QR code ideas to get you started:

  1. Corporate gifts: Whenever you or your company gives out corporate gifts from now on, include a QR code on the card or even on the item itself if you can. It can link to whatever you want. Include information about your company, discount codes, product information, invitations to future events, messages from the CEO; anything you can think of.
  2. Event organisation: QR codes are the smart way to share information at corporate events. They can be used to supply information before the event (add QR codes to invitations), to make an event more interactive and to gather feedback after an event.
  3. Surveys: Customer surveys can be easier to organise than ever before. A QR code can link quickly and easily to your survey without complicated URLs. Anyone can scan the link and reach the survey without needing to deal with a web browser. Make sure your survey is optimised for mobile screens.
  4. Registration: The same can be done with registrations. QR codes streamline anything that requires an internet link. Consider having a QR code at your next trade show… people can open the link to register their interest in your products or to share their mailing address so they can receive a free gift.
  5. Link to an app: Forget searching in the app store. A QR code will instantly open the page so the customer can download the tool for their phone.
  6. Enter a competition: People can immediately enter a draw online when they use a QR code.
  7. Share your menu or catalogue: If you’re at a trade show, you don’t necessarily need to bring every sample with you. Share a link so people can see more.
  8. Business cards: You don’t need to write out lengthy website addresses on your business card because a QR code can do the job.
  9. Product packaging: People are increasingly curious about where products are sourced. Add a QR code to direct people to view the live stream video of your chickens in the field, or read the back story of the products’ journey. Recipe ideas are always welcomed when inspiration is in short supply.
  10. Get graphic: QR codes also have the potential to be graphic art. Companies like Burger King are finding ways to seamlessly insert QR codes into their marketing. Find the right graphic designer and you can make your QR code part of your branding.

Make accessing digital destinations easy with a QR code. It might have taken 30 years, but the mighty QR code has finally found its feet and is here to stay.

Contact Honeycomb for more QR code and brand marketing ideas. We can add a QR code to your branded products or discuss a process where people can quickly access a link to enter your online store, register for a free gift or order their next round of company swag.

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