QR codes in advertising campaigns: we kill two birds with one stone – offline and online

67 views 19:50 0 Comments 18.06.2021

A QR code is a two-dimensional barcode that differs from the traditional content of more information. It can be called a paper hyperlink connecting the offline and online world: you just need to scan the code with your smartphone camera to get to the landing page of the product / service. According to Statista, by the end of 2020, 11 million US households will use QR codes. One of the reasons for this popularity is the pandemic, which prompted people to switch to contactless communications. How and where is it profitable to use two-dimensional barcodes in current conditions?

QR Codes in Marketing and Advertising: 5 Ideas for Use

Digital menu in restaurants

The COVID-19 pandemic has contributed to the digital transformation of food service establishments. Cafes and restaurants take care of the safety of their customers, offering them, instead of a physical menu, an electronic menu accessible by a QR code: a visitor must have a mobile device with a camera that “reads” barcodes (or with an installed application) in order to “get” to the menu on the site or view it in PDF format. Thus, according to a recent survey, over 60% of customers do not accept the traditional menu.

Digital menus are an alternative to disposable paper counterparts, the use of which is unprofitable for the establishment and harmful to the environment. Therefore, if you are interested in attracting customers to your restaurant, place signs with scan menus on each of the tables, as well as posters at the entrance, on windows and stands. This will serve as a kind of advertisement for your establishment and demonstrate your desire to take care of visitors.

Among the well-known catering establishments that have already mastered the QR menu: KFC, McDonald s, Curry Up.


Safe retail shopping

According to Modern Retail, Seek, which produces 2D barcodes in AR, has seen a 600% increase in demand in a few months of 2020! QR codes are becoming commonplace for large trading companies. The mega-famous brands Sperry, Puma began to use them and were integrated by PayPal and Apple. According to Brian Gaus, CEO of Hudson Yards, the goal of implementing this contactless technology for the mall is to improve the convenience and safety of retailers and shoppers. So, on the shopping center s website, it is referred to as a new function for creating a safe environment.

Many brands have recognized the importance of QR codes in retail in the past. Take note 3 ways to use them in marketing campaigns:

  • Virtual Stores… In 2016, the Amazon Go retail store was launched based on Just Walk Out with the option to sign in with a scan code and pay for purchases from an Amazon account. Amazon Go Grocery is the first cashless grocery store.

Earlier, in 2011, Tesco pioneered the smart store in South Korea, enabling shoppers to scan product codes on a large screen, add to cart, and arrange home delivery.

  • Tags on goods. Zara uses quick response codes on clothing price tags, which, when scanned, take the user to the product s landing page, which provides information on the available colors and sizes. In 2018, the brand created collection points based on these barcodes at the Stratford store.
  • Unique shopping experience… Visitors to Nike House of Innovation 000 are offered a Scan to Try feature that allows them to scan posters and order clothes of the right size and color right into the fitting room.
  • Contactless payments… In 2015, Walmart introduced Walmart Pay to link customer cards to the app. This allowed users to reduce the add. costs charged by credit card companies.

Outdoor advertising

More than 70% of consumers admit that they pay attention to digital billboards more often than online ads. And the combination of digital advertising and QR technologies is even more effective! Thus, Victoria s Secret scanned billboards with access to view a new collection of lingerie motivated consumers to make online and offline purchases.


One of the most original offline campaigns to prove the effectiveness of QR codes in advertising was launched in 2016 in China by the Levi s brand in partnership with the OMD media agency. Everyone was invited to become an advertising star, assuming an original pose, and then the photo posters were placed in different places. People could scan them and send them to WeChat – thanks to likes, reposts, and comments, consumer engagement increased by almost 3 million.


TV advertising

TV ads don t have to be boring and monochrome. Now you can get creative with creating QR commercials. Thus, the travel company World Trekker Tours managed to interest viewers with a 15% discount available for downloading to a smartphone in the format of a redeemable coupon or promo code for online booking with the option of sending to friends on the Internet.


And Dentist Andrew Webber made it possible for potential clients to save office contacts through a scan code in TV advertising and make an appointment in electronic form, as well as view the official website for detailed information about the procedures.


Digitized business cards

Creating a digital business profile is a chance to impress potential investors, business partners and customers. Scan business card is a modern type of business card that allows you to advertise a company or person in an interactive format. Scanning your business card saves you the trouble of printing thousands of cards over and over again – just show the vCard to an interested person and ask them to save contact information on your smartphone.


Thus, QR technologies have been and remain an important marketing and advertising tool. In the conditions that the pandemic has created, they allow public institutions to stay afloat and benefit from restrictions. Now keeping distance with clients and working remotely does not seem so difficult!

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