Leveraging the Power of Online Marketing

3 of The Best Business Uses of QR Codes Today

Some of the most innovative marketing strategy today involved the use of QR Codes.  QR or Quick Response code was originally developed in Japan in the mid 1990s for use in the automotive industry.  Today, these 2D codes has grown far beyond its originally intended use and are being used by savvy marketers all over the world.  In fact there was a 1200 percent increase in QR code scanning between June to December 2010*.  In the last few years, many businesses large and small started marketing campaigns with QR codes. While some campaigns were very successful, others wasn’t as fortunate.  By discussing 3 successful case studies here, we might be able to learn something and apply it toward our own QR code campaigns.


1. Home Plus Super Market

Homeplus is the 2nd largest retailer in South Korea. They want to better compete with E-Mart who is  number 1 retailer by solving problems for their target market.  How to save time and make the grocery shopping experience more convenient for busy professionals. By focusing on their customer’s problems, they came up with an innovative strategy that would allow them to capture more market shares while not having to increase  the number of physical stores.

They make use mobile technologies along with QR codes to create a shopping experience inside of subway stations. By reproducing full size print displays of groceries items, customers are able to use their smart phones to scan QR Code next to the items and make payments right on their phones. By the time they get back home, the groceries are already delivered to their doors.  Homeplus innovative marketing approach lead to an 130% increase in online sales and they are now the number 1 online retailer in South Korea.


2. Taco Bell QR Code Marketing

Taco Bell became the first major fast food chain to launched a nationwide QR Code marketing campaign in partnership with MTV.  Drink Cups and big box packages of Taco Bell’s food are printed with QR codes. Customers who scan these codes with their smart phones are able to view exclusive MTV video content through a mobile website right on their phones. The content are updated regularly and runs til the start of MTV Video Music Awards this year.   Since Taco Bell is the official sponsor the VMA show, they hope get increase exposure from this campaigns. Its been a few weeks since this campaigns started and so far they experience an increase in business by 5% with a number of scans well in the 6-figures range.  We will most likely see other fast food chain utilize QR codes in the near future.


3. Best Buy Stores

Although Best Buy has implemented QR Code into their retail store since late 2010, in my opinion it is still one of the most innovative application of this technology to date.  Best Buy goal was to create better shopping experience for customers by integrating social media and mobile marketing  during customer visits. Realizing that more 82% of shoppers that comes into the stores use mobile phones, providing QR Codes is likely to enhance users experience.  In most of the stores products information tag contain a corresponding QR code that when scan takes gives users additional information about the product like videos, customer reviews and more. Customers than can save the item for shopping later or send out the product information to friends or family though Social Media such as Facebook or Twitter.  The retailer hopes to learn a lot about buyers behaviors and continue to improve customer shopping experience.

While QR Code has been popular for quite a while in other parts of the World such as Asia and Europe, the US and other countries are just started to embrace the technology. There are definitely huge potential for this technology as long as it adds value to the consumers experience and not take away from it.  As mobile devices such as smart phones and tablets usage continue to explode, QR code should continues to grow with it.  It will be very interesting to see how other embrace this technology and comes out with even more creative approach.
* Research data by Jumpscan

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