Browsing all articles from December, 2012

Custom QR Code on Pizza Restaurant Menu

Main Line Pizza in Wayne, PA, uses one of our custom QR Codes on the front of its take out menu.  The menu was mailed to most local area residents.Main-Line-Pizza-menu


Another QR Code Fail

Location, Location, Location!

While a great cause that I gladly gave a buck to, this container was a qr code FAIL!  If you really wanted to donate money via scanning the qr code, you had to hold your smartphone at just the right angle to get the code scanned, because the plastic container blocked it!  Would have been a lot more effective if the qr code was put a little higher on the sign!

It would have been nice if the Humane Society had included a text marketing element also.

humane society


The Humane Society is a great charity that we love to support, but scanning its qr code was not easy given its location. Also, adding a text message marketing element to it would also have helped those folks that don’t have a smartphone.


QR Codes for Generating Email Addresses

Van Heusen did a good job with its qr code.  It’s a Custom QR Code in that it used the lower right for its name.

Ever wonder how Custom QR Codes are able to be scanned with logos incorporated in them?  Today, only about 60% of the overall qr code is actually used to generate the location for the scanner.  Hence, savvy advertisers can brand their promotions with their own logo in the middle or the lower right hand portion.

While Van Heusen did a good job with the presentation and also included a text message marketing element for feature phone users, I’m not wild about trying to solicit email addresses from text marketing or qr code scans.  Entering an email is difficult on a mobile phone and many errors do occur.  Not saying you shouldn’t do it ever, just not something I would recommend doing straight out the box on the first interaction with the consumer.van huesen


I know that retailers love to get email addresses, but concentrate on text message marketing instead when reaching consumers via their mobile phones.


Insider Tip on QR Codes and Text Marketing

When you use a QR Code in your promotion, there are some things that you should do and some things that you shouldn’t do.  So, when I sat down at a table in the food court at King of Prussia Mall during my Christmas shopping on  Christmas Eve, I was pleased to see this attractive custom QR Code from Puma.  My only regret was that my company didn’t make it.

The table top advertising was effective, because it was colorful and could be read from both sides of the table.  Moreover, when you are having some food at the mall food court, you have some down time and have time to scan a QR Code.

Puma did a lot of things right with this Custom QR Code.  It used its iconic black Puma logo in the qr code and it used a nice red background to make the animal logo stand out.  It also gave the viewer an idea of what he will get when he scanned the qr code — in this case an added incentive to save 20% on your holiday shopping when scanning the qr code.  To get the 20% off, however, Puma also would be able to obtain your email address for future promotions and that’s very valuable to Puma indeed.

The only thing that I would have liked to have seen Puma do was to add a text message marketing element to the promotion.  Remember, that nearly half of Americans still use feature phones and couldn’t scan the cool qr code if they wanted to.  Plus, when you take a qr code scanner to a mobile website, there is also going to be drop off and errors in inputting an email address, as emails are notoriously long and prone to fat finger input.  Therefore, by adding a text message marketing promotion, at least Puma would have been able to also obtain the mobile phone number of the consumer.

Custom QR Codes not only look cool, but they also have a 2.3x greater scan rate.

Custom QR Codes not only look cool, but they also have a 2.3x greater scan rate.

The Puma promotion was not the only qr code promotion that I saw on Christmas Eve at the King of Prussia Mall.  I also saw this large qr code advertisement in several locations on the walls of the mall.

This qr code promotion is pretty drab and doesn’t offer much of an incentive for giving feedback to the mall owners.  I would have liked to have seen it promote a free mall gift certificate to be given out each month or something to offer an incentive.  There isn’t much incentive for the user here and I doubt this gets a lot of scans despite having a large presence on the walls.

One thing that the King of Prussia Mall did right, however, is that it included a text message marketing element in it to capture feature phone users or those who prefer texting to scanning.

king of prussia

TEXT SAVVY: This QR Code was not custom made, but it did include the mandatory best practice of including a text message element to it.

Lesson to be learned:  Always include a text message short code promotion when using a qr code.  You’ll want to be able to reach 100% of the mobile phone users, not just those that scan qr codes.



17% of Time Spent on Web is from Mobile Phone

In 2012, 17% of all access time to the internet came from a mobile phone, according to this study by research firm gfk.  That’s a 5% increase over the 2011 numbers as Americans continue to chew up more and more data on their plans.  Accesses to the internet from tablets were also a big winner as it doubled from 3% to 6% last year.  Look for both of these trends to continue in 2012.

With more people accesses the internet from a mobile phone, it is becoming increasingly important for businesses, especially local businesses, to have a mobile-optimized website for the 17% of total time that is spent on the internet from a mobile device.



Top 5 Tablets Under $500

With Christmas right around the corner, last minute shoppers can find the perfect tablet for $500 or less.  Here’s our list of the best, affordable tablets.

5. Amazon Kindle Fire    Price: $159 and up












Starting at just $159 for the 7? LCD Display, Wi-Fi, and 8GB of memory, you can’t find a better deal.  Save both your money and time by ordering directly from Amazon.  Other models include features like 4G LTE and larger screens.


4. Google Nexus 10         Price: $399










The beautiful 10 inch display and a 2560-by-1600 high-resolution make the Nexus 10 very pretty to look at.  With Wi-Fi and 16 GB included,Google has created a beautiful competitor to the iPad.


3.  Microsoft Surface      Price: $499 and up








Microsoft’s entrance to the tablet world debut’s their newest Windows 8 operating system.  Although the base price only includes the tablet itself, it’s 32 GB memory and 10.8 inch screen, on top of its other unique features, make it valuable.


2. Samsung Galaxy Note 10.1      Price: $499












Wow. The features associated with this tablet, like the S Pen, make this the most creative tablet on the list.  The possibilities are endless with the Galaxy Note and it rightly deserves its place on this list.  This is the biggest competitor to the number 1 tablet under $500.


1.  Apple iPad (&mini)    Price: $329 and up














Apple’s iPad, and new iPad mini, are the most reliable and well known tablets on the market.  They get the number 1 spot because although the other tablets are innovative, you cannot get better quality.  Despite the hype surrounding the Apple brand, these tablets live up to their name.


How NOT to Place Your QR Code Effectively

Through QR Codes, the bridge between mobile media and viewer is only a scan away.  While QR Codes can be placed on products, packaging, and virtually any surface you desire (even food!), the question “where?” is crucial to its success.  Let’s take a look at a few examples of where QR codes are effectively wasted.

Sure, a billboard seems like a great place for a QR Code. A large space for placement and thousands of people will have the opportunity to scan.  On the other hand, not many people can scan a QR Code while driving 65 mph down the highway, putting the scanner in danger.  Billboard QR Codes have a higher rate of causing accidents than they have scan ratings, making them a poor choice for QR Code placement.



Soul of a Shoe

When purchasing a pair of shoes, do you typically base your decision on what the inside looks like? Chances are the outside styling and inside feel are the determining factors.  But hey, if you don’t mind sticking your phone where you’re sweaty foot has been, soul QR Codes were made for you.


bikni-300x170Bikini Bottoms

While creative, and eye catching to say the least, placing a QR Code on the bottom of Great Britain’s female volleyball team’s uniform will not get any attention from a QR scanner.  Maybe between matches they will receive a scan, but in the middle of a game? If men had QR scanners within their cornea, this would be a perfect placement.



bus  Transportation

Another clever, but unsuccessful attempt to place a QR Code is on the side of a bus.  Unique? Yes.     Eye catching? Absolutely, But taking the time to scan at risk of missing a ride doesn’t appeal to most public transportation passengers.  And like the billboard, with texting and driving laws now being enforced, few scans will be converted without a dangerous situation arising.




I’m not sure if this is creative or delicious, but considering the vanilla frosting, I’ll probably eat before I have the chance to scan the code.  Putting QR Codes on food is appealing, but it comes down to the hunger level of the consumer to whether it will be scanned.  Maybe it can pique the curiosity of a few scanners, but personally, I will digest it before I have the chance to open my scanner.


Now that we’ve seen a few creative, but ineffective QR Code placements, let’s look at a very effective one.


From the start, it’s clear that this QR Code sticks out from any of the others.  This QR code is a custom QR Code, including a picture and a caption embedded within the code.  Custom QR Codes receive 2.3x as many scans as regular QR Codes, making this one more likely to be scanned.  Besides the fact that it is customized, it is placed on a business card.  A business card is a surface that is stored for later use, as the recipient may want to reference back to it in the future. Unlike product or product packaging, it is less likely to be thrown away.  A business card also makes the QR Code more personal to the scanner, attracting them to scan to see what more they can learn that isn’t printed on the card.


Top 25 Follows in Mobile Marketing 2012

Author Bob Bentz    Category Media     Tags


Following a year of connectivity on Twitter, we put together a list of 25 influential Twitter accounts that mobile marketers should follow.

  1. Mobile Marketer @MobileMktrDaily–’s Twitter site. Provides great daily news stories in marketing, media, and commerce
  2. Mobile Marketing Association @MMAglobal– Twitter of the MMA. This global association seeks to expand mobile marketing and related technologies
  3. HubSpot @HubSpot– HubSpot brings all aspects of marketing to one place. Get the latest news, tips, opinion, software, and more
  4. Mediapost Publications- @MediaPost – Publishes the most up-to-date articles on marketing, media, mobile and social
  5. Mobile Marketing Watch @MobileMW – Mobile advertising, mobile marketing, and platform news. The Pulse of the Mobile Marketing Community
  6. Bo Woloshyn ? @BoKnowsMarkting – Bo uses twitter with his tips for marketing and communications, specifically, how to attract more customers online
  7. ClickZ @ClickZ– “The original digital marketing rag and still the best.” ClickZ is a great source for digital media marketing
  8. Ad Age @Adage – The global source for advertising and marketing industry news
  9. Imedia Connections @iMediaTweet – This “connection” for interactive media and marketing focuses on mobile publications
  10. Pete Cashmore @mashable – Founder of, a website dedicated to social media news
  11. Jennifer Preston @JenniferPreston – Social Media editor of the New York Times @nytimes
  12. 360i @360i – Expert digital media agency.  Innovators in search engine and social media marketing
  13. Charles Arthur @charlesarthur – Technology editor at the guardian @guardian and author of Digital Wars
  14. Dave Knox @daveknox – Digital media specialist and author of
  15. Fred Wilson @fredwilson – A VC. Principal of Union Square Ventures
  16. Jon Battelle @johnbattelle – Founder of Federated Media @FMP. Media/Technology author
  17. Jeff Bullas @jeffbullas – Social media and Digital media marketing insights and founder of
  18. Amy Jo Martin- @AmyJoMartin – Founder of @DigitalRoyalty. Author and expert/educator on social media marketing
  19. Harvard Biz Review @HarvardBiz – Latest and greatest posts from plus more marketing posts.
  20. Douglas Idugboe @douglasi – Digital Media and Social Web Evangelist.  Technology enthusiast and author
  21. Digiday @Digiday– Frequently updated content in digital media and mobile marketing industires
  22. eMarketer @eMarketer – Digital and mobile marketing, media, and commerce powerhouse
  23. Webtrends @Webtrends – Digital marketing optimization; Analytics across mobile, social & web
  24. Jason Houck @JasonPromotesU – Social media specialist.  Blog at
  25. mobileStorm @mobileStorm – Tips and tricks for implementing mobile strategies into marketing
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