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How to Use QR Codes to Measure Marketing Efforts

January 27, 2024
5 min read

Although QR codes have been around since the 90s, the last decade has seen them shift to become more widely considered marketing assets. QR codes hold more information than a traditional barcode and act as a scannable link that connects the physical and online world. Let’s take a look at how to use QR codes in your marketing strategy. 

What are QR codes 

QR, short for Quick Response codes are square, black and white barcodes used to store machine-readable information. As inferred by their name, the information stored within is quickly read by smartphones, making them a valuable addition to anyone’s marketing toolkit. Think of QR codes as a signature you can add to both physical and digital assets, which directs readers to a landing page or website of your choice. 

Why QR codes are the link between your on and offline marketing efforts 

Although these codes have been around for 30 years, their sudden skyrocket in popularity over the past number of years is due to two major innovations, the mobile phone, and the internet. These turning points in technology were integral to the effective use of QR codes, which isn’t all that surprising, considering that in 2018, not only did 2.3 million people own a smartphone, but they spent roughly 3 hours on it each day. As we all know, this sweeping increase in mobile phone and internet usage has changed the face of modern marketing, placing more emphasis on digital strategy and communications than ever. The gap that now needs to be bridged is the ability to track the effectiveness of our offline marketing efforts, online. 

Enter, QR codes. 

Offline marketing presents valuable opportunities for you to gain brand visibility in ways online marketing can’t. However, given that it often calls for third-party printers and suppliers, these campaigns can be costly and require a big time commitment. 

Adding to this the difficulty associated with tracking their effectiveness, the results of these investments can often disappear into the abyss.

When you’re able to connect your on and offline marketing efforts, you can tell a stronger brand story, give your audience the opportunity to learn more about your product or service, and track your marketing efforts as a collective unit, rather than in silos. QR codes just might be one of the answers to bridge this gap.

Incorporating QR Codes into Your Marketing Campaign

Marketers can integrate QR codes into various facets of their campaigns, leveraging them as versatile tools:

  • QR Codes on Business Cards: Incorporate a QR code on your business card directing recipients to your website, resume, portfolio, latest product release, or app download. Given the need to frequently update such links, consider using a link management system like Rebrandly. This facilitates real-time updates and provides detailed analytics on interactions with the QR code.
  • QR Codes for Conferences and Meetups: Display QR codes on name tags or apparel to offer attendees an alternative to traditional business cards. This encourages individuals to explore more about your offerings.
  • QR Codes in Infographics: Since infographics can be shared digitally or in print, QR codes serve as both digital signatures and avenues for audiences to delve deeper into your content. By combining a branded link and a QR code, you ensure that your assets always link back to your brand.
  • QR Codes on Promotional Swag: When distributing tangible items at trade shows or events, such as keychains or pens, incorporate QR codes. This enables recipients to scan and learn more about your company at their convenience.
  • QR Codes in Print Advertising: Major B2C brands have effectively employed QR codes in posters. This approach creates visually engaging advertisements while seamlessly connecting offline and online marketing. Scanning the code can lead to informative videos or purchase pages, ensuring that your print ads drive web traffic.
  • QR Codes in Coupons: Adding QR codes to coupons simplifies access for both customers and employees, whether in physical stores or online. Scanning the code can promptly redirect the audience to the latest promotions.
  • QR Codes on Product Packaging: For physical product marketing, consider affixing a QR code directly to the packaging. This empowers customers to access more information about the product, making it especially valuable for items that require careful consideration before purchase.

Potential Actions Triggered by QR Codes

While QR codes are commonly associated with website links, they can initiate various actions upon scanning:

  • Send a text message
  • Dial a phone number
  • Send an email
  • View a social media profile
  • Download an app

Customizing QR Codes for Your Business

Depending on your business and your specific QR code marketing objectives, customization may be in order. For example, Madison Square Garden in New York crafted a distinctive QR code to link to their website. However, it's crucial to consider your target audience before personalizing QR codes, as recognition and adoption levels may vary.

Measuring QR Code Success

If you invest in QR code creation and distribution, it's essential to track the results. Monitoring factors like user location, peak engagement days, and audience behavior helps tailor your campaigns effectively. Link management tools like Rebrandly allow you to track QR code performance similarly to link analytics. Furthermore, creating branded links for each QR code enhances campaign success by making links memorable and user-friendly. See for yourself and sign up for a free 14-day trial.

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