The biggest new trend in mobile marketing is Quick Response Codes, or QR Codes for short.
These square bar codes can be scanned by a mobile phone to provide additional information to the prospective buyer. Let’s take a look at some of their uses, as well as the steps necessary to get started using these along with the dos and don’ts!
The first thing you have to think about is how to create one. There are two options, each has it’s pro's and cons. QR Codes can be generated for free or also by using a paid service.
The process for free QR Codes is fairy easy, you enter the web address of a mobile friendly page containing the information you’d like to display, and the program generates a QR Code for your site. You save the image file and use it wherever you’d like. The downside is that the code is always linked to that specific page. This technique isn’t recommended for places where the linked information will need to be changed (like property signs). The free methods also require you to have your own mobile friendly page.
Paid QR Code alternatives generally offer more flexibility. You can reuse a QR Code, and change where it points to, or change the content of the mobile page. Some of these paid versions allow you to easily create a mobile friendly webpage (without requiring you to be a web developer). The paid versions generally also offer an easy way to track how many people are scanning your codes.
QR codes have an undeniable wow factor, and they are a user-friendly way to get people to your website. The massive growth of the mobile web and its growing importance for real estate investors is to have visibility. The tactics how you get a mobile audience to your site are many and we see QR Codes being a leading method to accomplish this objective.
There are some inexpensive services such as Clikbrix.com that can track how many hits you get from these codes. You can put these QR codes on your business cards, real estate signs, or even on your car. Mobile prospects can simply snap a shot of your code with their smart phone, which immediately takes them to your website where they can find all the details of the houses you have for sale.
The QR code provides one less step to getting people to your site. You have the visuals with the sign and then it connects you to you. People have an insatiable appetite for information, and you can give them many pieces of information at one time such as videos, pictures and contact information.
When using QR codes, keep the following rules in mind:
• Never create a QR code that points to someone else's content.
• Be sure to scan the code yourself so you can see what others will see
• Use a QR code that you can change after publishing.
• Make certain the code is large enough to scan.
It’s still very new technology for the real estate industry and not everybody knows what QR codes are. You have to explain it to them. Put under the sign " Scan this code for more information"
The choice comes down to free but limited or paid and flexible. You’ll ultimately need to weigh the pros and cons for each method and decide which works best for your needs.
What are the potential uses for QR Codes?
This is a good first place to start with QR Codes. The code can point to a mobile website with additional information about the property. Adding options to share the information via email (this is included on several of the paid QR Code generators) and a contact form to collect prospective buyers contact information are great options to include. Including images of the house, or a property walk through video can be effective as well. Walk through videos don’t need to be fancy. Many Real Estate professionals find it easy enough to shoot video on their cell phone or an inexpensive Flip cam. These codes allow you to provide additional property information to anyone who happens to pass by.
QR Codes can be effective on business cards. These can direct scanners to a list of all your properties, your Facebook or LinkedIn page or a short video of you explaining what you do. There are a lot of possibilities, and it pays to be creative with it. Make sure to keep your audience in mind. Who do you give your cards to? What additional information would you like to make easily available to them?
Property Profiles :
You’re likely already passing out property information to people who visit your properties. This is a great place to add QR Codes to provide even more information. The code can point to a photo tour of the house or give them an easy way to share property info. In general, the use case here is very similar to how you’d use QR Codes for property signs. The key is to figure out what additional information would be valuable to prospective buyers and give them that. Different information works best for different property types. It pays to think through what information a prospective buyer wants. Put yourself in their shoes and use that insight to create an informative mobile page linked to a QR Code on your sales literature.
If you are thinking of getting started with mobile marketing, QR Codes make getting started easy.