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Direct Mail + QR = Multi-Channel Success

Date: February, 2012 --

The name of the game is increasingly “multi-channel”, and surprisingly there is a very inexpensive way to build the “digital” into your direct mail promotions, your account statements and even order confirmations and invoices. 

If you haven’t looked at using QR (quick response) codes, you should. These are the strange looking square black and white pictures you are seeing everywhere. They are a form of barcode, but filled with much more information.  Originally developed as a device to track parts used in car manufacturing, they’ve slipped over into marketing applications.

QR codes can be read by a smart phone and some cameras linked to PCs.  If your customer or prospect snaps a picture of the QR code on your letter or promotion or in your print ad, it will call up your ‘mobile-ready’ website page. It is possible to generate individual QR codes that call up individually-relevant PURLs (personalized URLs). 

Now the prospect or client looking at your letter, her interest raised by your brilliantly conceived offer, won’t waste time going over to the telephone to dial a number or turn on her PC to type in a url.  (And get distracted by the dog or a child!)  She immediately takes out her mobile phone, which she always has with her, snaps a picture of the QR code and is taken to your special URL where she orders, signs up for email or mobile offer alerts, or subscribes. The possibilities abound.    

Description: 45th Feb Offer QR
Give it a try! Snap a pic of the above QR code to view a special offer from Data Services, Inc. Or just click here...

You are thinking, “But she needs a smart phone.” Well, yes, she does, and according to research firm Nielsen, in November of last year 43% of the US population had a smart phone.  What’s your target market?  62% of teenagers have smart phones, as do 39% of 45-54 year olds.    

And she probably already clicks. According to comScore, 14 million Americans scanned a QR code in June last year. 

There are brilliantly successful case studies around. The direct marketing company RSVP Publications, which targets the affluent, used what they call “Talking Postcards”, low cost postcards bearing an offer and a QR code.  A snap of the phone and the prospect can view a promotion, learn about a deal or discount, see a video, or make a dinner reservation or a hair salon appointment. A landscape architecture firm in Seattle received 106 QR code scans and 105 video views during the first two weeks of use.