QR Codes in Social Media Marketing

Social Media is here to stay. Time will tell how it will evolve, but for better or worse, social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter have created a system for establishing an online presence in an interconnected fashion that is fundamentally easier than maintaining one's own webpage and networks. It is for this reason that those without a social network presence are the exception. Of course, this applies to organizations, brands, and groups as much as it does individuals.

Engagement is the name of the game for many modern brands which are attempting to appeal to the modern, connected consumer. As is always the case, the easier it is for a consumer to connect, the more likely it is that they will do so before losing interest. While browsing the internet on a traditional computing platform, it is as easy as offering a one-click access point. In the real world however, brands must use marketing to compel a consumer to make a significantly greater effort in order to engage. QR codes are a perfect bridge between worlds – they do not require that a consumer remember a social media URL (which may be more complex than a brand's website to begin with) in order to engage – they require no more than a simple scan to land a consumer on a brand's social media profile.

Consumers can be further courted by providing incentives to visit a brand's social media presence. Simple calls to action can be effective, such as encouraging passersby to share their experience with a new product or service.

It is not uncommon for businesses to offer customers membership in reward programs, but this has traditionally involved either a lengthy signup process, (which can hold up lines at retail stores and otherwise inconvenience people) a requirement that a customer fill out a form and mail it, or that a customer visit a website to complete registration – an action that can be very easily performed with a mobile device and a QR code to scan.

Some locations are ideal for QR code implementation in that they involve forced downtime, and opportunities for activity can be reason enough to visit a social media profile. Public transportation often offers riders more time than they know what do to with, and a QR code in an advertisement can be a compelling escape. Likewise in movie theaters prior to a film, in waiting rooms, or anywhere that tends to see long lines form.

Fundamentally, the strength of QR codes in social media marketing is the ease by which a consumer can actually access a profile – without any medium-to-long-term effort. It is for this reason that when brand representatives are in the field, they should never be without prominent QR codes on all brand-related items.

See a list of massive brands using QR codes.