The QT on QR Codes

Have you seen these strange symbols yet?

QR Code for Preston Creative

Scan This!

Are you wondering what they are? They are Quick Response codes, or QR Codes. No big secret in Asia and Europe, until now, QR Codes have been on the QT in North America.

However, with the proliferation of mobile devices in North America, QR Codes are becoming de rigueur as a marketing tool.

They are a 2 dimensional code scanned by QR Readers. Readers are available on most smart phones now. You can also download from iTunes, or from service providers. Invented by Denso-Wave in 1994, they were originally used to track vehicle parts, but are now used different ways.

QR codes appear in art by the artist, Fabrice de Nola , and there is a comic book designed entirely from QR Codes.

QR Codes in Marketing Promotions

As a marketing tool, they’ve been used in both traditional and online campaigns. They are an interactive tool you can use in print, such as on business cards, newspaper ads, direct mail response campaigns, trade show displays, posters and menus. They can also be used in online campaigns, and placed on websites and emails.

QR code used in newspaper ad

I found this QR Code in the Help Wanted section of a newspaper

Once scanned, your QR Code can lead  your audience to:

Or they can simply be a way to communicate your contact information.

You can capture information by providing:

  • A mobile page with a contest entry form
  • Newsletter sign-up form
  • A survey

You could also look into a service provider that provides the Code and tracking information. Some providers you may want to investigate are:

These companies also supply the QR Readers.

If you want to generate a simple, free QR Code, like mine, you can go to http://createqrcode.appspot.com/

To learn more about QR Codes:

Give QR Codes a try in your next marketing campaign.

What do you think about QR Codes? Share your musings in the comments area.

Social Media Marketing: Restaurants

The first in a series of posts about Social Media Marketing for Restaurants

By day, I work for a marketing communications company. The clients are primarily franchises, and they are mainly restaurants.

Though using Social Media is catching on in restaurant marketing, I notice that many clients are hesitant to use Social Media Marketing in their marketing mix. Their reasons:

  • Their customers don’t use Social Media
  • They don’t understand it or how it can help their business
  • It’s overwhelming and don’t have the  time to plan and implement campaigns

Social Media is  Just for Kids

In conversations I’ve had with various clients, one misconception is that the “social web” is just for  kids.  This is not true. Take a look at the stats:

  • The September/October 2010 edition of Canadian Restaurant News, reported that 50% of restaurant patrons are between the ages of  25 – 54, and that 52% of patrons are female.
  • The average age of a Twitter user is 39.  The average age of those on  Facebook is 38 (Source: Royal Pingdom).
  • 42 million women in the USA engaged in social media networking at least once a week (Small Business Trends).

Clearly the average restaurant customer does use  Social Media in one form or another, whether that form is Facebook, Twitter, Blogs, YouTube or a combination of these and other Web 2.0 applications.

Whether you serve kids or middle aged adults, integrating Social Media into your marketing mix is something that you shouldn’t ignore.

Need help with  your Social Media Marketing? Want a custom Facebook Business Page Designed? Contact me at ginaprestonmarketing@gmail.com