By the end of this year, there will be a staggering 700 million smartphones in use around the world. Within two years, users will have crossed the line—accessing more information from their mobile devices than from their home or office computers.
In today’s retail environment, mobile technology is evolving as an ultimate tool to capture consumer attention in a highly competitive market. Effective mobile engagement allows you to reach your customers at critical decision points—when they are ready to review your brand, access exclusive content, or make a purchase. Quick Response bar codes, or QR codes, make it possible to effectively engage your customers and connect them to your brand with a more informed, interactive experience.
QR Code technology and other solutions from DG3’s Digital Marketing team allow businesses to stay at the forefront of mobile engagement. According to Joe Lindfeldt, Executive Vice President of Strategic Development, “QR Codes are far more effective than apps and SMS because of their immediate responsiveness. First, apps have to be downloaded – they are retailer-specific in most cases and require too many steps to process. SMS is a very limited non-graphic and costly interaction on a mobile device, and it is too restrictive for users of tablets like the Kindle and iPad. On the other hand, QR is open source, widely recognized and can be deployed by anyone for any purpose. As a result, customers have become familiar and comfortable with QR Codes.”
Lindfeldt points out that the most important aspect of QR campaigns is the success of the consumer’s initial engagement. “The only thing more frustrating to a customer than having no mobile experience is having a confusing or broken experience. Frustration mounts quickly and customers are lost permanently when the process isn’t easy and seamless. This is the entire foundation of DG3’s offering – exceptional user experience, any-device optimization and seamless transition to purchases.”
QR Codes can be decoded by most camera-equipped smartphones. They can be embedded in all kinds of print collateral and outdoor media. Short-term, topic-specific, mobile-enabled campaigns allow retailers easy access to custom landing pages, video, and other exclusive content.
There are many ways to encourage customers to enter a mobile engagement. Lindfeldt explains that the best ways for retailers to attract customers with QR and other mobile tactics is by offering a digital incentive or a prize through a competition. Customers need to have a reason to engage on their mobile, he says. “Once they engage we can capture key customer data and develop a long-term engagement with the customer.”
For certain retailers, customers may want more information than is available in-store. By adding a branded QR code, customers can access exclusive product or service information, or see how-to videos or other multimedia resources to support a purchase decision.
“Our design and programming teams bring their expertise to every facet of a QR Code campaign: QR Code creation, branding, development of mobile-friendly landing pages, social media integration, formatting for the full array of mobile devices, auto-response email, marketing metrics tracking and data analysis,” says Lindfeldt.
During the 2011 Black Friday shopping period, DG3 executed a wildly successful mobile coupon campaign using QR codes for Mandee stores. With the promotion active in over 100 stores, it produced a list of 45,000 qualified leads for follow-up in email marketing and generated over $400K in incremental sales over that weekend. Conversion rate was a whopping 94% — the number of shoppers that entered their email or opted in to receive a discount, and during the 3-day promotion period over 8000 coupons were generated.
Lindfeldt describes next steps beyond the successful short-term campaigns they’ve executed with Mandee, “Our focus for that client now will be on developing an evergreen mobile engagement that is not event-based, but is instead lasting and organic in nature in order to engage and then reengage customers with fresh information and incentives.”
There are a number of trends that are pushing mobile to the front of the line in retail. As consumers begin using their mobile devices more often to browse the web, more focus will be driven to mobile and investments in mobile SEO and SEM.
This trend also accelerates the need for mobile commerce capabilities that allow retailers to process purchases and payments from a mobile device on the go. Mobile commerce is projected to constitute a significant portion of overall e-commerce sales growth in 2012 and 2013. Lindfeldt goes on to explain that beyond QR Codes, retailers that want a share of the consumer wallet will need to provide an m-commerce gateway. “Near Field Communication (NFC) is rapidly emerging as a standard for processing these mobile payments,having become mainstream earlier this year. Device manufacturers are racing to incorporate NFC into every new phone version. And DG3 is already set to meet the needs that are emerging with this trend.”
Find a list of current devices that feature NFC technology on DG3’s website at: http://www.dg3dmark.com/mobile-engagement/NFC-enabled-devices.html
You can learn more about DG3’s Mobile Engagement offerings and how their Digital Marketing Specialists can create a campaign that fits your goals at http://www.dg3dmark.com/mobile-engagement.html
About the Author: Joe Lindfeldt, Vice President of Strategic Development, DG3 Worldwide
Mr. Lindfeldt is a Director of Diversified Global Graphics Group, Executive Vice President of Strategic Development, and Chief Marketing Officer. He is primarily DG3’s “Technical Visionary,” responsible for identifying and cultivating the key skills and competencies that will assure DG3’s future success. He works closely with North American Sales, Interactive, and Managed Services business units, developing and presenting technology solutions for major clients. In addition, Mr. Lindfeldt works with Senior Staff on potential acquisitions, and takes a lead role in global strategic planning efforts. Most recently, he worked on the creation and successful launch of the DG3 Digital Marketing business, which in 2011 experienced significant growth in client visibility, technology development, and revenue.
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