Using QR codes within your print direct mail advertising material boosts the reader likelihood to remain engaged in the information about your product.

Advertising campaigns must ultimately engage users beyond simply taking a quick look at the product depicted on an ad page. A report published by Nellymoser recently shares numbers that prove the effectiveness of direct mail containing QR codes as opposed to direct mail marketing without them. In this first time ever study,

QR Codes Get Better Response For Direct MailNellymoser was able to track the response rates of both and the results are encouraging for mobile and print QR advertisers. This new form of user engagement is gaining in popularity and scope. A formal report was long overdue.

“In 2011, the use of QR codes increased by 300%.” (Tweet This Stat!)

At this time, about 10% of the pages dedicated to advertising in print magazines use QR code. Just a year ago, that figure was more like 5% of advertising pages. This is in an attempt to bring interactive use that engages the viewer in physical action that takes them to information and product pages. The physical act of clicking through or scanning in a code makes a natural connection between the user and the product.

The US Postal Service has seen a huge drop in mail advertising as it has become quite expensive and is not nearly as cost effective in return on investment as it used to be. Print advertisement in mailed magazines however, are regaining their success when publishers and advertisers have inserted QR code into their pages. Mailed print advertising can be enhanced when integrating them with new technological advances into traditional means.

The number of mobile action codes, such as QR codes, Microsoft Tags and digital watermarks, in the Top 100 U.S. magazines jumped dramatically in Q2 2012. A total of 2200 codes were printed during the quarter, up from 1365 in Q1 (61% growth). This is more than double the 1062 codes printed one year earlier in Q2 2011 (107%).

To understand how these mobile action codes are being used in magazines, Nellymoser surveyed every issue of the top 100 U.S. magazines by circulation in 2011 and the first six months of 2012. The study is limited to national titles readily available on newsstands. This eliminated publications that require a membership, such as AARP magazine and regional titles. “For the purposes of this study, we refer to this list as the Top 100 magazines.

To compile the data, Nellymoser analyzed every page in each issue within the Top 100 magazines. In Q2 2012, we counted:

  • 46,132 total magazine pages, up from 38,719 in Q1 2012.
  • 19,976 total advertising pages, up from 15,691 in Q1 2012.

As the chart below shows, 2200 codes were printed in Q2 2012 versus 1062 during the same period last year.

Action Codes By Quarter

QR Codde Action By Quarter

The report discusses the active engagement of readers who have the print material in one hand and a mobile device in the other. It doesn’t have figures or explanations describing why there is a higher rate of response when this is the case, but the simple explanation may lie in the simple fact that magazine readers are interested in what they are reading to begin with. Engaging them further with advertising via QR codes enhances the overall experience.

Target marketing is as critical for QR codes as it is for any other ad campaign. For example, a young woman reading a magazine geared toward weddings and brides will already be interested in the material. Add a QR code leading her to further information about wedding planning and you have one very interested reader. The same goes for any subject and any product. Insert your advertising and QR codes into the appropriate media vehicles.

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About the Author: Mike Barnes (21 Posts)

Always taking advantage of the latest Internet Marketing possibilities, Mike Barnes has become recognized for his innovations using Social Media, Text Message Marketing, QR code Marketing and Mobile Website Design and Marketing.