Everybody is excited about the new QR code technology and the potential of reaching target audiences. However, the big caveat is that if your QR codes land on a non-mobile platform, you will do nothing more than frustrate your target audience and they may avoid your future QR Codes, whether done correctly or not. With mobile commerce expected to grow by 40% a year through 2016, customer engagement and satisfaction need to be your top priorities for the mobile experience. Despite the boom in mobile, almost half of the online retailers out there today have yet to develop a mobile marketing strategy. If you want an advantage in today’s market, create a mobile plan NOW, beginning with QR codes and mobile landing pages!
If you’re new to QR codes, read my earlier blog, “QR Codes and Why You Should Care”, and think about it before developing them for the first time. A typical smart phone today is five times faster and has 10 times the storage space of a top-of-the-line desktop computer from just seven years ago. But, if mobile customers scan the QR code and are sent to your regular web site designed for desktops (that isn’t designed to be viewed on a mobile device), they are force to pinch, squeeze and move horizontally or vertically in order to view your site. How frustrating! What a let down!
Some examples of QR codes done correctly can be found through mobile landings sites at Barleans, Aubrey Organic and ReNew Life. ReNew Life took it a step further when they created a landing page for their new “3 Day Diet Start.” They used mobile middleware to determine what type of mobile device customers are using and serves up the best page views for that particular device, thus creating the best experience. Try it yourself by going to www.3daydietstart.com, first from your Desktop, and then try it again from your mobile browser.
So, where do you start with mobile marketing?
First, evaluate your current mobile maturity level. You will have to develop in-house expertise, beyond the basics of smart phones and how to use them. Consider working with a mobile technology partner who can assist you in developing your mobile marketing strategy, along with multimedia and technological solutions that are right for your brand. Some of the key steps in developing a strategy are first to understand your audience/consumer and their mobile use. Determine your goals and what the action steps will be to reach those goals. The top four goals of most companies today are to increase customer engagement, improve customer satisfaction, build loyalty, and to be innovative within their industry. Choose the right technological approach that will accomplish those goals, and not leave you frustrated by getting half the solution correct. You will have to make key decisions, such as whether to build in-house or outsource. And, to be cloud based or internally hosted. Most importantly, seriously consider choosing a partner that is on the cutting edge of technological advances, understands marketing and not just tech talk, can provide analytics to help you understand your audience and ROI, and takes the time to understand you, your business, and your customers.
Geoffrey Robinson is founder of Digital Earth Network, a leader in the emerging world of mobile and digital marketing content and associated applications. Geoffrey was the former founder of Eye Force Productions, a web based advertising company, and has an extensive professional background, particularly in the Natural Foods industry, in sales, marketing, business operations, consulting, Point of Sale technology and other related verticals.
Posted on WholeFoods Magazine Online, July 15, 2011