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Why Have QR Codes Become So Popular For Marketers?

You’ve probably seen QR codes in marketing in many places.

Restaurants, Amazon drop boxes, grocery stores.

They look like this:

QR codes are not new, but lately, they’re gaining popularity in marketing simply because they’re an easy way to communicate or connect an audience to information, quickly — with very little instruction.

What Are QR Codes?

But what is a QR code, and why is it gaining popularity now… in 2021, when we’re seeing such innovative marketing technologies?


First, let’s define what a QR code is.

A QR code is a bridge between the physical and digital world.

It’s a code, that you use your mobile phone to interact with.

Technically, “QR codes” or “Quick Response codes” are a type of barcode that can be read by a mobile device.

QR codes allow you to connect your audience in the real world to nearly any digital experience. But what does this really mean?

QR codes have become very popular for marketers over the past year as all newly released smartphones have built-in QR readers so there’s no longer a need to download a QR reader app.

The Recent Growth In QR Code Usage

A recent study found that over 30% of marketers are now using QR codes in their campaigns, which is a 300% increase from last year.

In fact, since the global COVID pandemic, QR Code usage has grown even more quickly.

And the reason that they started to gain even more popularity recently, is because the technology, although novel — was far too advanced for it’s time.

QR needed a tool to interact with it.

A QR reader (aka. Mobile phone).

It wasn’t until recently that mobile phones came with built-in QR readers, allowing consumers to scan QR codes without needing to download an app.

This, coupled with a global pandemic which forced to allow businesses to communicate information with customers in contact-less Covid-19 environments, led to the perfect QR storm, dramatically increasing the usage of QR codes in business environments over the past two years.

Advancements in QR Code Technology

As with most technology, that sees massive growth, there’s innovation.

And Flowcode is one of the more interesting innovations in the QR code space.

Think about it like QR 2.0. (Marketers pay attention).

A Flowcode is an enhanced QR code that uses next-generation technology to connect the real world to the digital world instantly.

They are privacy compliant, ultra-fast scanning, and allow for a customizable design that includes adding colors and logos.

With Flowcode QR codes, you can update where your QR code scans and the code’s design at any time.

This is by far one of the easiest pieces of software to use, and allowed non-technical marketers to spin up customized QR codes in seconds.

QR codes have become a popular tool for marketers because of the versatility they offer. You can set a Flowcode QR code to scan to almost any digital experience including:

  • Your website.
  • A phone number or text message.
  • Download an app on the Apple App Store or Google Play.
  • Customer contact collection.
  • Your social accounts.
  • Promote your latest video.
  • Scan to a coupon or discount.
  • Sending and receiving payment information.

Many marketers are even adding QR codes to their direct mail, billboards, and other postings to track who is engaging with their content, and what campaigns are most successful.

Yes, that means that Flowcode QR provides data analytics for all your QR codes to help you optimize your marketing spend.

You can’t improve what isn’t measured, and a data rich QR option, makes implementation as a main marketing tool, that much more viable.

QR Code Case Studies

In closing, as the saying goes, good artists copy, great artists steal.

Here are some incredible examples of brands using QR codes to engage with their audiences in different ways to get the creative juices flowing.

1. Stewart-Haas Racing and Hunt Brothers Pizza to Create Fastest QR Code Experience in Sports

As part of the interactive activation, the Flowcode is a “Scan to Win” experience giving viewers both at home and at the track instant and direct access to win prizes. The grand prize is two tickets to a NASCAR Cup Series race of the winner’s choosing during the 2021 or 2022 season. There were several other smaller prizes offered throughout the season.

The “Scan to Win”, brought viewers into the experience and increased viewer engagement and interactivity.

2. JLo Beauty Makes 2021 the Year of Direct to Consumer Retail in the Shopping Capital of the World

The experience, which kicked off during Jennifer’s performance during Dick Clark’s Rockin’ New Year’s Eve special, featurd JLo branded and ultra-fast scanning Flowcodes, wrapped on the MTA S Shuttle subway in the heart of NYC.

The activation gave consumers instant and direct shopping access to her new skincare line using Flowcode.

3. How QR Codes Power New England’s #1 Party Destination

Ballard’s Beach is a famous beach on Block Island, Rhode Island. We are the number one party destination in New England. Ballard’s has live music everyday, two live bands on the weekends, seven bars, a full service restaurant, a hotel, twenty-four VIP cabanas to rent, and three tiki bars. Ballard’s has it all and there’s no better place to spend your day with your family or friends.

They’ve implemented Flowcodes to enable instant access to booking reservations, ordering food, renting VIP cabanas, all without needing to wait on a server, or call into a front desk employee. This experience has saved money on printed menus, reduced wait times for guest inquiries, provided data and insights on customer behaviors and increased revenue.

The Future of QR Codes

QR Codes today are a game-changing technique of combining the physical and digital worlds.

Now that consumers have gotten used to them, they’re not going anywhere.

Want to know the best ways to use your QR code?

Check out Flowcode’s Best Practices or CLICK HERE to make your FREE Flowcode QR.

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Guest Post By Cletus McKeown

Cletus McKeown is the content strategy lead at Flowcode. He is an audience growth specialist with 10 years’ experience developing compelling content and developing effective partnerships to reach new audiences in cost-effective ways. He has a proven track record of increasing search rankings, gaining followers, and organically reaching new audiences.

This is a sponsored post by Flowcode. All opinions documented align with the views of the team at


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