Mobile Barcodes Offer Key Customer Engagement
In fact, recent research has found that more than 40% of companies are currently using mobile marketing tactics, including mobile email, mobile Web sites and mobile applications. Looking ahead, another 20% said they plan to adopt mobile within the year, as the number of consumers adopting connected mobile devices continues to grow, per an IBM report.
But are companies choosing the right mobile media element to bring their brand to life, and are they doing so in a manner to achieve maximum results?
When it comes to invigorating both traditional and digital communication channels, by encouraging consumers to engage wherever and whenever they are, mobile barcodes as a new mobile media element have the ability to make once-static communication channels interactive and measurable -- optimizing advertising and providing brands with sought-after analytics.
Mobile barcodes are easy to use -- requiring only a camera phone -- are highly targeted, and offer an immediate call to action to the consumer. A consumer can easily scan a mobile barcode with their device to find a nearby store, access a coupon, watch exclusive video or hear from a favorite celebrity. Mobile barcodes are making direct marketing more immediate and providing consumers with an opportunity to instantly engage with their favorite brand or exclusive content at the point of impulse buys.
According to research from comScore, 14 million mobile phone users in America scanned QR or barcodes on their phones in June this year -- mostly from newspapers or magazines, and on product packaging both at home and in store. While this research is encouraging and there have been many success stories, mobile barcodes do face some challenges, especially since they are a relatively new marketing tool.
A starting point for anyone contemplating a mobile barcode campaign are a number of important questions before any campaign is designed or deployed. For example:
1. What is my goal for using a mobile barcode? Am I trying to drive sales, increase customer engagement, encourage consumer loyalty or educate my audience?
2. Is the mobile barcode easily discoverable? Is it well positioned within my print ad / billboard /TV spot/packaging/etc.? Will the consumer have to search to find it?
3. What is the consumer's incentive to scan the mobile barcode? Am I offering sufficient value in terms of giveaways, discounts, information or services based on entertainment and utility?
4. Have I taken the necessary steps to ensure the code resolves to the right URL, delivers the correct content and is easy to scan by multiple device types using multiple scanner applications?
5. Am I ensuring the largest possible reach for my campaign given my selected symbology, encoding, the mobile barcode's print properties e.g., location, color and size?
6. Is the content to which the mobile barcode resolves optimized for mobile? If so, how will it appear across multiple device types?
7. Have I provided an educational call to action within my campaign to show consumers how to scan?
8. Have I properly tested all elements of the campaign to ensure it works?
9. Am I utilizing a barcode management solution that will provide me with a robust set of analytics so I can properly measure my campaign's success?
10. Once I have my consumer's attention, what's next? How do I want to continue to interact with the consumer and what is my desired outcome?
Best practices that answer fundamental questions are essential to help brands determine how to successfully launch new mobile campaigns leveraging mobile barcodes.