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Marks and Spencer Dabbles With QR Code Marketing


QR Codes have been around for ages in Japan and yet, it took the technology more than a decade to come to this side of the world. But all this is thanks to the fact that we didn’t have mobile technology like what we have today a decade ago. Now that it has made its way here, we are finding more brands attempting their own way to dabbling with the technology. Insofar as we can see, there are more bad ways to use a QR Code than fantastic ways.

Some branding experts have applauded a Toyota print ad recently because the advertising team did a fine job in bringing consumers to an interactive, creative and fun way of engagement. The QR Code was said to be of the right side, placed prominently on the advertisement (instead of placing a small, tiny, obscure QR Code in a small corner of the page, like they are ashamed of the code being there in the first place) and it unapologetically invited consumers to come explore the ad further.

Yes, unapologetic, that should a word advertisers should remember if they want to use QR Codes in any of their mobile marketing campaigns. It pays to be bold and creative.

Anyway, according to Nielsen, eighteen percent of United Kingdom’s consumers regularly use and scan a QR Code and that figure is an encouraging fact for anyone who is interested in using mobile technology as one of their main marketing efforts. But uptake for consumers in other parts of the world seems to be much faster, said another report.

A more recent report tells us that Marks and Spencer might be walking down the same path as they have placed a large QR Code on the window of their Briston store as a part of their Mother’s Day campaign. Placing it prominently on the store window helps because you don’t have to step a foot into the store or be holding a flyer or brochure in order to scan the code. It is large enough so that people who are walking past can scan the code too.

The QR Code leads consumers to a specifically-design mobile-friendly landing page – a good thing! How many times have we been sent to an ‘unfriendly’ page (a conventional made-for-personal-computer kind of website, for instance your usual website) and get all confused because the page is, first of all, not completely in view and second of all, the texts, images and flash is so tiny it is impossible to read.

We cannot emphasize enough the importance of a good landing page and it seems that Marks and Spencer did the ‘right’ thing. The other problem with mobile marketing campaigns is that there is no call to action. We need to tell consumers what to do when they are at the site and then end it with a persuasive call to action.

Isn’t it that, after all, our main reason for launching the promotion?

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