Sure, there are absolutely going to be other mobile technologies (such as NFC, perhaps) that will push their way a bit further into the mainstream. But with QR Codes, the momentum has reached a tipping point. Here are a few tips to incorporate QR Codes into your marketing materials so your audience will scan.
1. Provide Instructions Near the QR Code
Yes, awareness of QR Codes has increased dramatically over the past few months. But there are still plenty of people out there who don't know what they are or how to use them. To assist those folks, provide instructions near the QR Code on your printed materials.
This could be done by simply including text (i.e., "Scan the QR Code with your smartphone") or by incorporating an image that displays a smartphone pointing to the QR Code, or an image that depicts how the QR Code could point to a smartphone that is displaying a website.
2) Give People an Incentive
When marketers first become familiar with QR Codes, they often rush too quickly to incorporate them. They'll skip over fundamentals, such as, "Why would my audience want to scan this?" Rather than just slapping a QR Code on your printed materials, develop a reason why you should have one. Will it make it easier for your audience to access a map or directions? Will it make easier for people to contact your company or make a purchase?
Include that reason somewhere on your printed materials to let people know what they'll gain from scanning the code.
3) Educate Your Audience Ahead of Time
Yes, QR Codes exist primarily to make print interactive. But you can use other media to increase awareness about them.