One of the newest and most intriguing ways marketers are integrating mobile with the traditional power of direct mail is through QR codes, or Quick Response codes. These two-dimensional barcodes can feature PURLs that drive users from printed material to the Web via smartphones. QR codes can turn a printed direct mail piece into an interactive mobile call to action, allowing static messages to become a quick-scan hyperlink to just about anything online.
Why Mix Mobile and Direct Mail?
The Nielsen Company recently predicted smartphones will overtake feature phones next year. Although smartphones first became popular among business people, today many new buyers select them for personal use. Additionally, faster mobile web connectivity is growing, and mobile web search is becoming one of the most common uses for these devices.
Marketers, of course, have been watching the growth of smartphones with a keen interest in how best to use this technology to connect with consumers. Increasingly smartphones are becoming an integral part of the daily lives of consumers. Many people don't leave home without them and view their smartphones as very personal devices. While the relatively new field of sending marketing messages directly to consumers' mobile phones has its place, many people are worried about privacy. A recent study indicates young adults would rather receive marketing messages via postal mail. The study, titled "Finding the Right Channel Combination: What Drives Channel Choice," conducted by ICOM, surveyed consumers from 18 to 34 years old and found these young adults overwhelmingly preferred to learn about marketing offers via postal mail rather than online sources. The study also found only 25 percent of respondents perceive getting more postal mail compared to a year ago, while nearly three times that amount said they're getting more email. There is a great opportunity to gain these consumers' attention and interest by using direct mail.