How Can QR Codes Help Brand Your Business?

Socially Now QR Code

There have been recent reports of China overtaking the U.S. in 2012 as the leader in the smartphone market, and Brazil and India is projected to join the top five countries by 2016. When you think of smartphones, do you think of QR codes?

Because QR codes are scanned with a mobile device, it’s natural to see the connection. Who is more excited about QR codes: marketers or consumers?

According to Nielsen/McKinsey’s NM Incite, QR codes increased from .002% in June 2010 to 0.15% in March 2012. Some may argue that’s not such a huge increase compared to other alternative mobile technologies like “Near Field Communication” (NFC). With NFC now available on the new iPhone 4S, will QR codes still be a useful social media tool to brand your business?

In a recent analysis of February 2012 tweets, most of Twitter followers were neutral on QR Codes. Those for and against them were evenly split, and only 11% sent positive remarks. Regardless, QR Codes have become more popular in the last two years and are commonly used on business cards, magazines and products labels.

But how do people feel about the square pixel icons showing up on a freeway billboard or when they take them to a not-so-interesting blog site? Did that business just squander a marketing opportunity to brand their product or service and earn a potential client?

When those square bar codes connect consumers to a website, a video, a special offer with a call to action, the visitor will be more engaged and will be more likely to click through and purchase.

Despite some recent criticism, QR codes continue to be a major tool in the evolution of mobile marketing. A mobile landing page launched by a QR code that provides a takeout menu, contact information, a map with directions, coupon, or real estate listing can be very effective. Also, adding one on your email signature and linking it to your Yelp!, Facebook and Twitter accounts will encourage social media sharing.

If you use QR codes, remember to be creative and effective. The creators of “WTF QR Codes” had selected some of their funniest photos of QR codes. Which is your favorite? Let us know the best place to add your next QR code?

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*Images courtesy of WTF QR Codes

Noodles009How Can QR Codes Help Brand Your Business?