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Driving Brand Awareness and Trial: The QR Code

In recent years the QR code has come to be known for a solution during the touch-free

days of a global pandemic. From replacing paper menus to product instructionals, this humble, 2-dimensional code has a history spanning more than 25 years.

The QR (or Quick Response) code as we know it today was developed in Japan in 1994 out of the desire to create a 2-dimensional barcode with the ability to be read quickly and have the capability to hold a lot of information. While it never took off as a replacement for the traditional barcode, it did take off in the auto industry, contributing to management work efficiency for a wide range of tasks from production to shipping and beyond.

It wasn’t until 2010 that the QR first became known on a global scale, when major smartphone models began to include a scanner in its camera function. In the next few years the technology made a big appearance but was quickly labeled a ‘fad’ and disappeared back into the dredges of new and unused innovations.

Fast forward to 2020 where businesses of all sorts began to utilize the QR code in various applications to reduce hand-to-hand contact. Almost forgotten by consumers, the 2-dimensional barcode became known and used by all.

In our sampling programs, we utilize QR codes to provide an easy, one touch solution to bridge the gap in user experience between print materials and web presence, special offers and even user feedback. Simply put: adding a QR code to a sample or coupon builds a drive to immediate purchase.

Here’s some tips on how to use a QR code to add value to your customer experience:

Call-to-Action to Purchase- Add an interactive CTA to drive consumer directly online or to a specific retailer’s website

Drive to Retail- Include a QR code directing to a store finder where they can locate a retailer near them.

Ecommerce- If your business is ecommerce-based, utilize a QR code to direct the consumer to an instant offer. The fewer the steps to purchase, the better!

Education- Do you have a product that requires education or specialized instructions? Create a QR code that takes your customer to an instructional video or other communications you may not be able to fit on packaging/other communications

Sign Up- Email acquisition is often an important part of any marketing campaign. Collect valuable consumer information with a QR code that brings the user to a sign up page to receive a special offer or valuable information

Research- Link your customers directly to a survey to capture valuable feedback on the brand and experience

In general, it's important to remember that with any customer acquisition campaign, the fewer the steps to purchase, the better! With consumers on their phone more than ever before, increase your return when it comes to CTA by utilizing the widely-known, and free, technology of QR codes.

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