This mobile marketing technique has now found its place for mainstream use.
Aside from newspapers, cereal boxes are likely the most read form of “literature” at the breakfast table, and the manufacturers of those products are realizing that they can get a lot more out of the space by using QR codes.
This form of mobile marketing provides a virtually unlimited opportunity to expose the consumer to content.
In 2011, for example, Kellogg’s discovered that its packages could be made to be significantly more entertaining by adding the barcodes which could be easily scanned by individuals who had their smartphones handy – and they assumed that most people do. When consumers scanned them, they were redirected to a video. Most recently, it involved an video of a sunrise scene, saying “it’s morning somewhere”, as a part of the brand’s push to become a snack for any time of the day.
QR codes are not only appealing to consumers, but also to mobile marketing companies, as they can redirect to any kind of online content, from websites and to landing pages, to video or apps. They are inexpensive to create and to implement, and can be customized to include logos and URLs. Though they have been popular in Japan for some time now, it wasn’t until very recently that they became widely embraced in North America and parts of the rest of the world.
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It has been within the last year that quick response codes have been tiptoeing their way into the mainstream.
According to a recent Forrester Research survey, approximately 75 percent off online American retailers are now using QR codes in one way or another. By April 2011, almost 20 percent of all of the smartphone users in the United States had scanned at least one of these barcodes. This is an increase of 14 percent over the statistic in May 2011.
Another research group, comScore, showed that over two in three people in the United States and Europe who had ever scanned a code had done so with the intention of gaining more information about a product.
On the other hand, it is the smartphone users in Japan who have the greatest likelihood of downloading a special offer or a discount coupon by scanning QR codes.