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QR Codes – The New Age of Marketing

February 16, 2012

By Carol Amato

If you’ve gone to a restaurant, flipped through a magazine, or shopped at a retailer recently, there’s a good chance you’ve seen a QR code.  This code, which resembles a bar code, is popping up all over the place.  Today, I’m going to explain what QR codes are, how they are accessed and how you can use them for your business.

QR Code

QR Codes – The New Age of Marketing

What are QR Codes?

A QR Code is a Quick Response Code.  This code looks similar to a barcode, but it can actually store a lot more information than a barcode can.  While businesses use barcodes to store specific product information, people can use QR Codes to product information, deals, website addresses and more.

How Are QR Codes Accessed?

Scanning QR codePeople can access the information stored in QR Codes by using a free QR Code scanner application.  There are apps available for different smart phones, and they can be downloaded in that phone’s app store. 

Once the app is downloaded, people can open it up and scan the QR code.  At that point, all of the information that the code contains will display on their cell phones.  The type of information that displays will depend on the information that was loaded into the code. 

For instance, some people may load coupon information, which means coupons will display when the code is scanned.  Others may have contact information, or product updates.  Whatever the case may be, the information will display once the person scans it via the free application.

Now that you know what QR Codes are and how they’re accessed, I’m going to show you how you can use them for marketing.

QR Codes and Marketing

There are lots of ways you can use QR Codes with your marketing efforts.  I’m going to cover:

  • Business cards
  • Upselling

Business Cards

Let’s say that you have a business card that has your company name, contact information and website address on it.  You hand out the cards and people file them away.  Then, they have to pull out the card every time they want to get your contact info or find your website.  You can make the process easier by also putting a QR Code on the card.  Then, people can scan the code and go straight to your website, or get all of your contact information.  Once they retrieve the information, they can store it on their phones.Scanning QR Code

However, simply putting the code on the business card isn’t enough.  Give people a reason to scan the code.  For example, you can say “Scan the code to get access to my free training videos.”  Then, people will scan the card to access your videos.  When they do that, they’ll also access your site.  Once there, there’s a good chance they’ll browse around, and maybe even sign up for your newsletter or purchase some products. 

As you can see, using QR Codes on your business cards will benefit you in a couple of ways.  First, it will make it easier for people to store your contact information, and second, it will help you drive some traffic to your website.

Upselling

QR Codes can also be used to upsell your products.  For example, let’s say that you have two programs for sale.  The first teaches people how to set up a blog.  It costs $10.  The second shows people how to drive traffic to that blog, and it comes with videos.  You sell this for $97.  Obviously, you want to push the $97 item, and QR Codes can help.Price tag with QR Code

What you’ll need to do is make the QR Code part of the checkout process.  When people purchase the $10 product, they will see a QR Code.  They can scan the code to watch a video introduction about the product they just purchased.  You can use the introduction to explain the product that was purchased, and to introduce people to your other product.  You can explain how the second product can help people who purchased the first product.  Then, there’s a good chance some of your customers will purchase the second product.

Click here to see another valuable post called Online Marketing Strategies – Social Networking Impacts Your Business.

QR Codes are part of the next wave of marketing.  If you want to be at the front of that wave, come up with a plan to include these codes in your marketing materials.  Then, Google “QR Code generator” and select the program you want to use to create your code.  At that point, you’ll be able to make QR Codes for your marketing materials.

I’d love to hear your thoughts below.

Take Care,
Carol Amato

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  • Bluehost

    QR codes are certainly the way forward to advertise for a lot of businesses.

    • http://www.CarolAmato.com/ Carol Amato

      Yes, I agree! Thanks for stopping by. :-) Carol

  • Don

    Ive seen these all over the place. Very applicable blog post.

    • http://www.CarolAmato.com/ Carol Amato

      Thanks, Don – yes they are becoming very common place, and many folks didn’t know what they were. I appreciate you stopping by.

      – Carol

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