Marketing and branding are essential to the long-term success of your business. Quick Response codes (QR codes) are one small tool that can have a big impact on marketing your business to the general public. Surprisingly, most people don’t know what they are.

QR codes are small barcodes that hold up to 7,000 alphanumeric characters. From a business angle, a basic use of QR codes would be to embed a URL that brings the customer to your web site.

The technology is free and helps to get potential customers interacting with you. It also provides them with vital information regarding your business. However, there are additional ways you can use QR codes to market your business.

Gain Online & Foot Traffic
A brick and mortar business might place QR codes by the register or on sales receipts. These tactics will help drive traffic to your web site. Give the customer an incentive by putting up coupon codes that can only be accessed through the QR code. Train them to do this by having weekly specials accessible only through the QR code.

Social Media Outlets
QR codes work well with social media networks such as Facebook. Generate a QR code with a link to your Facebook page. This increases traffic to your Facebook page and generates more “Likes” for your page. Your customer’s “Likes” are shared with their friends who may just stop by to see what you are all about.

Offer Incentives
The best things in life are free – or at least at a reduced cost. Creating coupons, discounts, and sales encourages your customers to purchase your products. To use this strategy, you need to create a page on your website to hold the coupon or discount information.

Once this is done, create a free QR code with the URL to this page in it. Post this QR code on your advertisements, flyers and product information to encourage your customers to participate in your incentives.

Direct Marketing Strategies
Most companies send out flyers, emails or newsletters to potential customers hoping to entice their business. Adding a QR code to this print media creates visual interest and gets your customers to interact with your flyer.

Your QR code can direct your customers to a microsite set up for them, a landing page, or your blog. It is important that you are directing your customers to a specific page instead of just your homepage. Your customers need to know what it is you are specifically trying to sell them.

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