QR codes, short for “quick response” codes, have become an increasingly popular tool for brands in their social media marketing campaigns. With a QR code generator, it’s easy to generate your own QR codes that can trigger an associated action like opening a website or viewing a video.
While QR codes have been around since the 90s, they’ve had a major resurgence recently as social media marketing has continued to grow. In 2021 alone, QR code scans increased by 96% year-over-year.
So, what makes QR codes so valuable for social media marketing today? Here are some of the key benefits brands can enjoy by leveraging QR codes as part of their social media strategies:
Drive Traffic to Websites & Landing Pages
One of QR codes’ most basic yet powerful uses is to direct social media users to branded websites or landing pages. Rather than typing out a long URL, audiences can simply scan a code to access relevant content instantly. This makes it easy for brands to promote and distribute links across social platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and more.
Promote Special Offers & Discounts
QR code is a great way to distribute limited-time special offers and exclusive discounts to social media followers. Brands can create special QR codes that unlock deals when scanned and then promote these codes across their social channels to drive traffic and sales. This adds an interactive element that encourages social users to engage with the brand and feel rewarded.
Share Rich Media Content
Beyond just linking to websites, QR codes can also direct viewers to image galleries, audio files, videos, and other multimedia content. This gives brands a unique way to share richer content experiences on social media beyond static posts. Users actively view the content by scanning the codes, making for much higher engagement rates.
Power Social Contests & Giveaways
Contests and giveaways are always popular on social media, and QR codes can add interactivity to these campaigns. Brands can assign unique codes to each contest entry, which users then scan and submit, or create special prize redemption codes. This avoids the need for cumbersome data collection while adding a fun, tactile element for users.
Connect In-Store Shoppers with Digital Content
QR codes aren’t just useful online and bridge the gap between social media and physical storefronts. Brands can display unique QR codes in their retail stores, which shoppers can scan to connect with online content like discounts, product videos, reviews and more. This helps unify the brand experience into a seamless omnichannel strategy.
Simplify User Authentication
For contests, giveaways, and other gated social media content, QR codes provide an easy way for users to authenticate themselves. Rather than filling out forms, users can scan a unique QR code which signs them into the branded app or website. This frictionless user experience increases engagement and conversion rates.
Drive App Downloads
Want to promote your brand’s mobile app across social media? QR codes make it seamlessly easy. Create a download QR code for your app, then share it across all your social channels. Users can scan the code and get sent straight to the app store to download it, avoiding the need to search manually.
Create Interactive Social Games
One creative way brands use QR codes is to power interactive social media games and scavenger hunts. Users scan codes to collect clues, earn points, or unlock game content, creating a viral hands-on experience. This transforms static social content into something engaging and experiential.
Simplify User Signups & Registrations
Tedious signups and registrations often lead users to abandon brands. With QR codes, brands can instantly sign users up for webinars, courses, memberships, and more with a quick scan. Avoid registration form dropout and simplify the process for users.
Analyze Campaign Performance
With scannable QR codes, brands gain access to powerful user analytics they wouldn’t have otherwise. You can see exactly how many users are scanning your codes and where they’re being scanned geographically. This provides invaluable data to inform future marketing campaigns and strategies.
Overall, QR codes allow brands to create interactive, gamified experiences on social media that users genuinely want to engage with. They add a tactile, real-world element that helps bring digital campaigns to life. And with the ability to direct social traffic anywhere online, the possibilities are endless. As consumer QR code usage continues to grow, it will only become more vital for social media marketing in the years to come.
How do you create a QR code for social media?
Creating a QR code is easy and free through many online generator sites and apps. Simply enter the URL, content, or other action you want users to access. Customize the code’s colors, shape, and design. Download the generated code as a JPG or PNG to share across social media.
Where should you place QR codes on social media?
QR codes should be prominently displayed on all your social media assets. Place codes on your profile pictures, covers, posts, ads, and anywhere else followers will engage. Ensure the codes stand out and include a clear CTA prompting users to scan them.
How can you track QR code scans on social media?
Choose a QR code generator that provides analytics, like the number of scans and location data. Link the code to UTM campaign URLs to track conversions in Google Analytics. Use a branded URL or landing page to identify traffic sources easily.
How do you market QR codes on social media?
Make your QR code assets visually engaging with bold colors, exciting imagery, and eye-catching text overlay. Explain why followers should scan the code and what they’ll get in return. Promote the interactive experience the code unlocks to pique curiosity.
What’s the best way to optimize QR codes for social?
Keep codes simple with minimal surrounding elements so they’re easy to scan. Choose colors with high contrast from the background. Place codes prominently in image frames and videos. Use a shortened URL for brevity. Check scan success on different devices.