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The 10 Commandments Of 2-D Codes

Feb 19th 2011 at 5:26 AM

By Jamie Turner

 going to dive into 2-D codes, you should have a handle on the best practices. 1. Thou Shalt Assist Thy Consumer in the Use of 2-D Codes Even though the use of 2-D codes is increasing rapidly, most consumers are just starting to embrace them. It’s best to help consumers out a little with a line of copy that explains what 2-D codes are and where the consumer can download a code reader. Here’s the one I use all the time: “Scan the 2-D code for a special coupon. To download a code reader to your phone, open your mobile browser and visit” Other good 2-D code readers can be found at, and

 2. Thou Shalt Drive Consumers Through to a Webpage Designed Specifically for a Smartphone This one seems painfully obvious, but you’d be surprised how many companies drive people through to regular webpages. By linking your 2-D code to a mobile site, you’re enhancing the customer experience. A good customer experience equals return visits, which is what you’re looking for.

3. Thou Shalt Run Thy 2-D Code Promotion in an Area That Has Cell Phone Coverage Another classic mistake is running a 2-D code promotion in an area that has bad cell phone coverage. If you’re going to run a 2-D code promotion in a subway station, a rural area or an office building, you’d better check the mobile reception first.

 4. Thou Shalt Add Value for Thy Consumer The best 2-D code promotions give people something extra for their trouble. Sometimes, that extra value is simply an enhanced experience. Other times, it’s a discount or special coupon that rewards them for taking the time to scan your 2-D code.

 5. Thou Shalt Track the Traffic to Your 2-D Code Landing Page Marketing is about metrics and measurement, so be sure you track your results. One way is to measure in-bound hits using Google Analytics or some other analytics program. Another way is to partner with ScanLife, Microsoft or some other 2-D code provider to track data using their systems. Experiment to see which approach works for you.

 6. Thou Shalt Conduct A/B Split Tests Which landing pages work best? You can test your way to success by conducting regular A/B Split Tests with your 2-D code landing pages. Once you have a winner, use that landing page as the control and see if you can beat the results with alternate versions.

 7. Thou Shalt Not Bore the Consumer to Death with Lame, Uninventive 2-D Code Promotions The best 2-D code experiences inspire prospects or customers to come back for more. That’s what Starbucks did with its mobile app, and what the Smithsonian did with their MEanderthal exhibit. How are you making your 2-D Promotion sticky?

 8. Thou Shalt Test Thy 2-D Code to Ensure Proper Size and Usage It’s not enough to simply test your 2-D code on your computer screen. You need to test the physical proof of the ad, catalog or poster that you’re using it on. That way, you can be sure it will work on the final product.

 9. Thou Shalt Keep Thy 2-D Code Promotions Updated

 10.Some companies change out the discounts they offer via 2-D code every week. Other companies invent new and creative ways to use them on a regular basis. What are you doing to keep your 2-D code promotions fresh and updated?

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