How to make and scan QR (Quick Response) codes easily in social media is a topic rarely covered. QR codes are increasingly used in social media campaigns and seem to be invading all marketing spaces. In 2011 alone, QR code scanning increased by 300% and a growth of 60% per year for Facebook interactions and Twitter tweets. The main reason is the simplicity to access different types of information just by scanning them.
The graph to the left also indicates that over 60% of QR codes are used in relation to social media efforts, with direct social media links accounting for 15% of uses. Men, more than women, have gravitated to QR codes with half of users (about 20% of mobile users) and online searches coming from smart-phones. So businesses need to optimize information for mobile use and can use QR codes for social media by:
- Link to social media networks: especially Facebook and Twitter for B2C and Linkedin for B2B or personal branding. There are many links to generate QR codes for social media including QR Code Monkey, Likify and QR4, and our favorite QR Artist .
- Join: Either joining a mailing list or subscription to an RSS feed, video service or blog updates, etc.
- Exclusive content: Content to compliment an inperson experience or special offering such as special deals, vCards, etc.
- Current information:Continually updated information or providing an area that can maintain current information such as blogs, videos, photos, competitions, promotions, etc.
- Polls: get instant feedback on users ideas.
- Surveys: find out demographic and behavioral information.
- Call to action: Link to a landing page, a promotion, join a service or participate in some kind of desired user response.
- Analytics: Find out where and how people are accessing information through different QR codes for specific printed advertisements, promotions and web objects (images, videos, etc). Shortening links helps such as goo.gl or MyQR.co.
- Social proof: Linking offline and online engagements to build communities and expand influence and expertise.
- SEO and SMO:
- Social graphs: Social graphs show the influence of different web objects and how to increase web traffic through these searchable objects to promote even more sharing.
QR codes are mostly scanned in packaging, magazine and newspaper placement but also business cards or brochures accounted for about 13%. Other great uses for QR codes to help spread virality and link to social networks include the following places:
- In-Store: Using QR codes for company information, website, wifi settings, special offers, mailing list, etc.
- Signs, Menus and Business Card: Physical relationships between online and off-line environments top provide a direct link to special content or information so consumers can improve their knowledge of your business and services/products.
- Products: Placed on product tags and packaging or point-of-sale receipts, more information about deals and product information can help to sell products on-site or be saved to wish-lists.
- Events: Name tags, ticket stubs, printed material helps to create a social proof setting and allows clients to access more content/promotions during or after an event.
- Print ads: Add in a call to action, information on company location or advertisement story, or offers/rewards.