22 January 2011

The QR Revolution starts to get attention

* Written and published originally for Dealer Specialties

On the way back from the 2011 Manager’s Summit, I used Delta’s text based Check-in system. You check in online, and they text you a link for a dedicated mobile page with your boarding pass and a prominently displayed Aztec Code that is scanned by readers at the TSA Check Point and at the Gate. Until the point of writing this, I thought the code was a QR Code, but I’ve since learned they are close cousins.

While boarding in Atlanta, I handed my phone to the person at the gate, she scanned it, and handed it back. Waiting on the Jetway, I overheard the lady behind me asking her husband how I checked in with my phone. I turned around, and started explaining system, and how the QR Code was the newest manner of coded information. You would have thought I had invented it. I did proceed to embark on a brief discussion of how my company and my customers use them as well, and this seemed like something I should do here on the Dealer Specialties Blog.

The QR Code allows us to encode a variety of information and post it on a website or directly on your vehicle’s window label, to be scanned by potential customers. The code can link them to Vehicle Videos or an Inventory Link. Once on the link, they will have access to all the information about the vehicle. It gives them a chance to save that site to their phone, to forward it to a friend or family member, ultimately one additional way to move the information about your inventory around online.

Other, outside the box uses could be QR Codes that link your customers to your dealerships blog, customer feedback/testimonial page, or your Facebook presence. Many dealers have expanded their online presence to include these social based outlets and this is another great outlet to drive traffic there.

There are sites that will create a QR Code for your identity, or dealership, and offer a mobile link to all of your sites form one location. You can offer customers direction to your Facebook, Twitter, Blog, Website, Inventory Page, Blog, Service scheduler, or any other location you need to get them to. www.itsmyurls.com is one example I’ve seen used multiple times.

You can put QR Codes on your service receipts to drive traffic to a survey, where you capture additional contact information to push specials and increase customer retention. Even put them on direct mail campaigns to drive traffic to sites that you have control over or share QR Codes on your Facebook page to drive traffic to specials.

The books wide open at this point, but it’s certain that the QR Code is a must have method of customer oriented marketing. In a world where the dealer providing the most information wins, the QR Code is one of the quickest ways to share a great deal of information with next generation oriented customers.

If you can’t help but want to know the more technical details involved, I’d suggest downloading a QR Reader for your SmartPhone and scanning the code below.


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