Monthly Archives: February 2012

Anyone Can Create a QR Code

Blending the BestI received a comment today that anyone can create a QR Code. Yes, but not everyone can create and deliver a successful user experience behind the QR Code that will bring back visitors. Planning, preparation, testing and delivery combined with a relevant "call-to-action are key elements for successful execution. Even major corporations make mistakes when they dip their feet into QR Codes for the first time.

This is part of our discussion that has continued on the LinkedIn Group "QR Codes – Great Ideas".  It began with the article published by @Mashable a week ago – "Why QR Codes Won't Last".   Many of us in the QR Code community have spoken up this week to educate readers that QR Codes are in an early adoption stage in the U.S.   It is not time to declare death to QR Codes as clever entrepreneurs and inventors continue to come up with new and exciting innovations.   We just launched QRCombo, an application that combines two destinations into one QR Code – http://mobexme.com/QRCombo

If you search tweets using the words "QR Code", you will see many creative use cases for QR Codes nearly every week. The #qrchat group that meets every Sunday evening (7:00 pm Central) is always reviewing the week's clever and creative QR Code campaigns. You can see some other great sample use cases for QR codes in this on-demand presentation our our partner, Brainshark, recently produced – "Brainshark and QR Codes". 

From my perspective, the best user experiences are the ones designed for multi-smartphone users from two (Scandinavian Airlines "Buckle Up for 2") to a community (Dayton, Ohio Scavenger Hunt). QR Codes were designed to connect the offline to the online world but they can also connect a community that will follow your brand. Participation of communities is where the greatest penetration and impact can be made for QR Code adoption and that is where we focus our services to help our customers to share and build their brand.  

Want to learn more, do more and provide more experiences with QR Codes?  Host a Mobile Media Made Easy workshop for your group, company or association.  Visit  http://mobex.me/mmmelearn to contact us at Webinar Resources and schedule a session.

Four Essential Elements to Keep QR Codes Alive

Constant comments and articles that "QR Codes are dead" seem to keep sprouting up.  I came home from work last night and the first thing my son said to me was, "Dad, QR Codes are dead".   He heard it on Facebook as did thousands of others after retweeting and reposting a recent OP-ED article http://mashable.com/2012/02/15/qr-codes-rip/  posted on the Mashable Tech blog.  I was very surprised by the author's reasoning but not surprised by the comments received from a community of supportive QR Code enthusiasts and experts.  QR Codes dead?  Nothing could be further from the truth. 

QR Codes were developed by Denso Wave, a Japanese company that originally produced them for Toyota in 1994.   I first encountered a QR Code printed on a banner advertising Ralph Lauren's Polo brand at the US Open in 2008.

QR Code scanning has dramatically increased in the U.S. in the last two years and recent research by ScanLife indicates a 300% growth in 2011 over 2010 – http://blog.scanlife.com/tag/qr-codes/.   Recent research from Chadwick Martin Bailey indicates that 1 out of 5 people who have scanned a QR code, have also made a purchase – http://blog.cmbinfo.com/bid/73238/The-Facts-Marketers-Need-to-Know-Before-Using-QR-Codes   With 20+ million people scanning QR Codes, I would say that is a market opportunity.

So, here are four essential elements that I believe marketers, enthusiasts and consumers should consider to keep the QR Code crops growing and flourishing.

Education

Like any new process or idea, it is important to educate people on what a QR Code is, how it can be used and what value it delivers when scanned.  Always include some instruction and direction when you are using QR Codes.   The consumer needs to be guided through the "pitch to the package" (tell them where to get a QR Code reader, how to scan the QR code and what they will receive when they do).   Marketers, follow groups that meet online to discuss mobile technologies and learn what works and doesn't work.  I join a group of experts on a Twitter chat, #qrchat, every Sunday evening.

Utilization

You can find many great use cases and applications related to QR Codes.  However, "plan before the scan".  Determine your goal, Identify your target audience, plan how you wish to reach them and include a "call-to-action" (CTA).   Some of the most popular CTAs are coupons, discounts, free tickets and video content.  The reason many people claim QR Codes are dead, is related to the poor user experience that many marketers have created while experimenting with QR Codes.   Many QR Codes still direct the viewer to a company homepage (that is not optimized for mobile viewing).   Plan a memorable and actionable user experience and your visitors will spread the word and return.

Innovation

I have seen some great QR Code applications lately and they go beyond the traditional scan to a mobile web page/video scenario.  Some smart marketers are learning that QR Codes can be more interactive and are developing some very clever and successful campaigns.   Scandinavian Airlines recent "Couple Up to Buckle Up" QR Campaign required two people to sit down and plan a trip together.   As each partner scanned their own QR code, a split video of a young man on one phone moved towards the women on the next. 

Our company, Webinar Resources, recently launched QRCombo, a QR Code application that combines two destinations into one QR Code.   There are other innovations on the horizon and you will see QR Codes included in a multi-channel mix — web, email, SMS, social and print.  Innovation will keep QR Codes alive, fun and profitable.

Communitization

Marketers are learning more about the power and influence of a community that can essentially like or unlike your brand in seconds.  QR Codes are an ideal way to reach out to communities and connect people.   The city of Dayton, Ohio, recently launched a Scavenger Hunt that included the use of QR Codes.  When communities start engaging in activities that involve QR Codes, adoption of their use will happen much faster. 

Summary

Four essential elements, education, utilization, innovation and communitization will be required to keep QR Codes alive.   Each of these elements are building blocks for the others.   Look at the structure of a QR Code.  It is basically made up of a series of different building blocks, like Legos (they have an application too).  We need to work together to strategize, plan and execute successful QR Code campaigns that people will remember, revisit and recycle into new innovations that will be building blocks for future marketing, selling and learning opportunities.

 

 

Free 10-day Trial and Launch of QRCombo

Capture, Communicate, ConnectToday Webinar Resources announced QRComboTM, a QR code capture process that accelerates and combines delivery of mobile marketing communications with quick lead response.

Existing QR code generators provide one destination for delivering a variety of mobile content but lack the ability to provide a two-step action that is necessary to capture leads.  QRCombo adds another layer of “quick response” by combining both processes into one QR Code. Self-produced or professional mobile video content can now be linked to popular lead capture forms generated from cloud applications such as Salesforce, ExactTarget, Marketo, Eloqua and PayPal Mobile.

The Florida Wildlife Foundation has linked a short animated video with their PayPal mobile page using QRCombo. They plan to print the QRCombo code on business cards, brochures and outdoor panels to communicate their appeal for supporting the Florida Youth Conservation Centers Network (FYCCN).  During the video, the viewer is prompted to "rescan" the QRCombo code if they wish to support the FYCCN programs through a donation.

Webinar Resources offers a FREE 10 Day trial of the QRCombo application. To learn more about QRCombo, visit http://mobexme.com/QRCombo to see live applications or to start the Free 10 day trial.

Connect with Your Partner and Share the QRLove

QRLove mobexmeEveryone knows it takes two to complete a couple, two to tango, two to make a connection and two to make a pair.  This Valentine’s Day Webinar Resources invites all smartphone users to make that special connection, have a little fun and make QRLove.

It’s mobile media made easy and all you need is a partner, a smartphone and a visit to our http://mobexme.com/QRLove site to get the fireworks started.  We know that everyone does not carry the same smartphone or have the same mobile service, but we know you will enjoy this concept to connect in a special way.   It is also a demonstration of our abilities to connect two mobile videos through one QR Code.  

Make sure you visit http://mobex.me/madeQRLove and share your experience afterwards.   We want to know how many ways people can make QRLove.  It is not as delicious as chocolate covered strawberries but it will bring your close to someone special in your life.  

Enjoy!