We are happy to share the news that we will soon be releasing enhancements to our QR Code management system – QReate & Track.
To help support our growing community of QReate & Track customers, we are releasing enhancements that will help users better organize, manage, and report on the QR Codes that they create and track.
Here are a few of the features that will be included in this upcoming release:
- Folder Management: Customers will be able to create and manage folders to better organize and store their QR Codes. For example, folders could be used to describe campaigns, product types, and more.
- QR Code Folder Assignment: Customers will have access to new fields that allow them to assign new QR Codes and existing QR Codes to multiple folders.
- Cleaner Navigation: With the growing popularity of QR Codes, our customers have been creating them more frequently than ever before. Thus, users now have the ability to access QR Codes via the Collapsable/Expandable folders, as opposed to searching a long list of each code on the left-navigation menu.
- Trash Feature: For various reasons, users may want to inactivate or remove a QR Code after a period of time. These codes will now be displayed in the Trash folder to keep them out-of-sight by default.
We have already received some positive feedback from customers regarding these features. All users will have access to them by the middle of next week.
Throughout Business Transformation: A New Path to Profit for the Printing Industry, I strove to identify ways that printers could grow their business by offering marketing services and solutions to their clients.
Once a service provider lands a deal on a campaign that involves multiple channels or touch-points, the opportunities for providing additional value-added services rises.
For example, by helping a client understand that you are going to help them increase the effectiveness of their marketing campaign (as opposed to simply being the component that prints their materials), you can start having the discussion about how you are going to measure their efforts.
Thanks to advancements in technology, this is not that hard to do. Comprehensive marketing program measurement metrics and analytics can be made available through marketing dashboards.
Through the dashboard, marketers can:
- See who is responding within seconds of the visit
- Use up-to-date collected results for ROI calculations
- Create graphical representations of results that update automatically
- Improve sales lead effectiveness via automatically delivered lead e-mail messages
- Gain immediate access to raw data for other corporate systems or processes
If you are a service provider, I’m willing to bet that your customers might smile when they hear that they’ll have access to features like those.
Are you ready to share that good news with them?
While it sure can be fun to generate personalized URLs and QR Codes and then put them on a piece of printed material (direct mail, flyers, brochures, etc), the real enjoyment can come from the time you spend actually tracking and measuring how things are working.
Here are four metrics that may help you do this effectively:
- The number of people that scanned or clicked: Half the battle of launching a successful marketing effort involves simply getting someones attention. How can you make your message stand out from the clutter of other messages that the recipient may have received? Well, pay attention to the group that at least takes some action on your response mechanisms. Even if they do not actually respond to your questions on the landing page, the act of scanning a QR Code, typing in a URL, or sending a text message involves effort. That bit of effort may indicate a bit of interest in your message; thus, those people should be treated differently than those found a home for your printed materials in their waste basket.
- The number of people that responded: Yes, we love these folks. They took the time to visit your response page, enter some contact information, and perhaps answer a few questions. Make sure that you are ready to embrace these leads as quick as possible. Of course, pay attention to the data that they provide to you! If they shared preferences on how they prefer to be contacted or in what they’re interested in, make sure that you respect and honor that.
- Where are the responders in the sales pipeline: At some point, leads are handed off between marketing and sales departments. However, marketing’s job is to support sales the entire way through the pipeline. Thus, marketing folks should have the ability (and the desire) to see where the leads they’ve generated have moved down to in the sales funnel.
- Actionable intelligence from the responders feedback: We often tend to look at each response and lead as its own entity. This is good and understandable. However, we should also look at the data from a high-level perspective. Take the time to look for trends — when do people click? When do they respond? What answers are being provided/selected by the majority of folks?
Answers to these four metrics should certainly help us to grasp whether our current printed materials are effectively reaching our audience. But more importantly, they should also help us to create and launch better marketing efforts in the future.
Mobile is certainly a channel that businesses are paying more attention to with each passing day. Investments are being made to help companies use mobile for external-focused tasks (i.e. finding prospects, communicating with customers). But it also can provide benefits to internal processes.
Here are two areas that companies could look at when figuring out how existing business processes could be improved thanks to mobile:
Raise your hand if your company’s database of customers and prospects is perfect………… Not there yet, are we? Certainly, we all are willing to say that our efforts would be more successful if we had better data. Our marketing campaigns would deliver greater ROI; our sales-cycle would be shortened, etc.
One way to develop a better database is to make it easier for your employees to populate it. Can your sales reps easily update a contact’s record from their mobile device after they’ve left an on-site meeting? Do they have the ability to add prospects to the system the night of a trade show, or are they waiting until they get back to the office next week?
In cases like those, mobile can certainly be the channel that contributes to a better database.
Travel budgets may not be the same as they once were. But that doesn’t mean that travel to conferences, trade shows, and other events has stopped. Rather, in many cases it means that the bosses and management folks are traveling, but they’re leaving the worker-bees at home.
In those cases, how easy is it for your traveling team to access key reports? Can they hop on their phone to check on the sales pipeline without actually placing a call? Can they view a status report on open projects without chasing down representatives from each department?
Of course, being able to view critical reports quickly truly applies to all employees. Because mobile phones allow us to access channels such as email and social media 24-7, we may find that we are expected to do just that. In those cases where the minutes are absolutely precious, ensuring that your team can easily access the right information will earn a lot of goodwill — and increase productivity.
There are still many things that need to be addressed in a QR Code campaign. Shortening the URL, tracking the campaign, and ensuring that you direct people to a mobile-optimized site are all things that will help your QR Code campaign succeed. I have to admit, after years of touting QR Code capability in the US it is great to see its rise in use. With that said, we now need to focus on doing it right. Not because I said so, but because by doing it right you give your company the best opportunity for success with a QR Code campaign. When you use QR Codes properly, you have a greater chance of reaching your goals and objectives.
Let’s start with what not to do. Here are some common mistakes with QR Code campaigns:
- Generating QR Codes that are not trackable: If you can’t measure it don’t do it. That’s my marketing motto. Make sure your QR Code generator tool has tracking and reporting capability.
- Generating QR Codes from long URLs:
Example: – http://www.gotomywebpage.com/fun/8785gu866090/gyugyhhgihihi/ – This creates a dense code which is not as easy as to scan as a shortened code like – www.qr2.it/short or www.ilnk.me/w45f
- Not personalizing QR Codes on Direct Mail: Did you know you can take a Personalized URL and generate a personalized QR Code? http://johnfoley.DomainNameHere.com – When the QR Code is generated that QR Code will go to the PURL and the recipient will see their personalized page..
- Not optimizing the place you drive them for the mobile experience! The mobile experience is different, and it is no fun for the mobile user to navigate a web page that was designed to be viewed on a laptop. The user will be stuck scrolling around in their mobile browser, trying to read your website that probably has more text than an IRS document. You get the message? You need to think Mobile Content. Check out iFlyMobi as a great tool that can help you create the mobile experience.
QR Codes are a great way to reach the mobile audience for your business. Doing it right gets you better results. Let’s work together to continue the journey of best practices and ideas using mobile media for marketing.