REI, the national outdoor retail co-op, is now using QR codes on the back of its direct mail catalog. When the code is scanned, it resolves to a retail store locator page, which helps to support the promotional message of “100+ Stores Nationwide.” Offering information such as this works well for a catalog, because often times a consumer will want to visit an actual store to try on clothes or test out equipment found in the catalog, before making a purchase either on line or over the phone.
With respect to code instructions, which appear underneath the code, REI does a good job informing consumers of what the code is, where to get a free reader app and what to do once the app is installed.
Question for REI marketing: Are you using QR codes in store and in other advertising channels/mediums, as well? My guess would be no, they aren’t, and what a lost opportunity is that.
Although I am not a direct marketing or catalog marketing specialist, I see a lot happening on this back page, maybe too much. While I know the company wants to promote several items all at once, I don’t know if this is the right setting to introduce the company’s use of 2D technology. Granted, the 2D space is still so new, no one for certain can say one way or another that this is or is not the way to introduce the technology but, from a general marketing perspective, I don’t believe it is. I would rather have the information and introduction compete with less. Then again, what about an old fashion A/B split test to find out. Think about that last point.