Quick response or (QR) codes have taken the world of advertising by storm as marketing executives have finally found a way to bring an innocuous billboard or poster to life. For decades, consumers walked past hundreds of these types of adverts without giving them a second glance. Partly because they were uninterested in what was on offer, partly because there was nothing else to see. Once you’ve seen a poster advertising a product, you’ve encountered all there is to discover.
It appeared that print media was dying a slow and ignominious death but QR codes have breathed new life into these one-time flat and boring methods of advertising. In a nutshell, QR codes are placed on these posters. The codes can then be scanned by consumers who have a smartphone or similar devices that can connect to the Internet.
In order to scan a QR code, simply use a QR code reader app on your phone (most will need to download an app), and by using your camera it will automatically scan. The phone user will then be asked if they would like to follow the Internet link of the code. If they do so, it will lead them to a webpage that may consist of a video or sign-up page.
This is a tremendous advantage to advertisers who can now once again plot clever billboard campaigns with the aid of QR codes. With such technology, the possibilities are almost endless with innovative marketing minds likely to be in their element as they try to outshine their rivals. Once upon a time, posters and billboards were all there was to an advertising campaign. Thanks to QR codes, these same bland posters merely scratch the surface and can carry consumers off to a world of mystery and intrigue.
Companies are already creating their own masterpieces with fashion designer Calvin Klein offering a naughty alternative to their risqué billboards. Musicians can now use QR codes to reach their audience, rewarding code users with exclusive tracks and special offers. Even McDonalds have got in on the act with their Japanese branches featuring burgers with QR codes that direct consumers to a web page filled with nutritional information. With the ability to encode up to 7,000 characters, businesses will never have to worry about being restricted.
Use Or Lose Out
There are more than 70 million smartphone users in the United States at present with this figure set to grow exponentially in the near future. A remarkable 70% of Americans surveyed admitted that they would remember an advert with a QR code. This proves that this form of advertising has the potential to be phenomenally successful. Hot on the heels of social media, advertisers have once again been given a remarkable way of ingraining their product on the consciousness of consumers.