Thursday, February 14, 2013

QR Codes – Personalizing with Custom Mobile vCard Profiles

Posted by Rose Strong

My first exposure to QR Codes was about two years ago when I signed up for my first smart phone. I wasn’t sure what QR Codes were exactly, but these little images were popping up all over, on magazine pages, food packages, price tags, storefront windows and billboards. When I found there was an app for them, I installed it immediately.

Today, these tiny boxes are everywhere. And I do mean everywhere. Check out this story from National Public Radio about a new company using QR codes on headstones to keep loved ones nearby.

It seems that within the first few years of their incorporation into our consumer landscape QR codes were designed by computer engineers, but today evidence from this Mashable.com posting points to designers making sure these little squares have somehow become part of our landscape and won’t easily be overlooked.

Also, take a look at what marketing and advertising folks are doing to grab our attention. Boredpanda.org and the blog Hongkiat.com have some great and strange examples of QR codes that stand out among other advertising that we see every day.

With that said, many companies using QR Codes wind up employing them without defining the strategic use of such technology or succumbing to the pitfalls of bad design.

Interesting embedded content for a QR code would be a virtual business card, a company video on YouTube, a registration for an event, a discount price on an item along with a way to purchase it, a coupon for a discounted or free item and/or an event admission.

I asked Furia Rubel’s Vice President of Marketing, Laura Powers to give some insight into how our company has been working in QR codes for our clients.

“Recently, Furia Rubel developed a custom mobile profile platform that displays a content-rich profile for an individual on a mobile device,” she said. “A QR code designed to link directly to this profile has many significant marketing and advertising uses. Furia Rubel creates the individual's custom QR code as well as the tailored and customized mobile profile.”

Additionally, Laura explains that this platform works within a company's database-driven website and can be modified within the website's content management system. Once the profile is set up, it doesn't need to be updated separately from the main website. Content is tied directly to the website, so when the individual's page is updated on the company website, the mobile profile is automatically updated too. Tracking and reporting on these custom mobile profiles can be handled through Google Analytics.

Laura thinks that using QR codes this way is more useful than simply downloading an individual’s contact info or viewing their website. These profiles provide valuable biographical information, downloadable contact information for your device, links to connect on social media and one-touch buttons for directly contacting a person right from the page which the QR code provides.

Have you used QR codes? If so, what have you used them for? Does your company have a QR code and have your clients, customers and/or partners found it useful?

1 comments :

Unknown said...

I'm not seeing as many QR codes as I did a few years ago. My impression is that there hasn't been a clear enough value proposition to the end user. I do see its potential as another channel in distributing content. (BTW some loony advertiser - a car dealer as I recall - put a QR code on a billboard alongside a major Chicago expressway. BAD move.)

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