QR codes or Quick Response codes are two-dimensional bar codes that can store more information than traditional product bar codes. They are read by smartphone apps that when scanned or taken a photo of, performs a specific action such as opening a website, automatically sending a text message or dialing a number.
Non-profits recognize potential of QR code campaigns
As Idealware pointed out, QR codes are a growing phenomenon. Marketers have started to utilize these codes to entice consumers in information sharing. For example, a blood drive in the area can include QR codes in posters that when scanned sends viewers to the blood drive’s website, requesting for participation. Non-profits are also starting to see the potential and have used QR codes to mobilize constituents. The Big Wild, a Canadian Conservation group, for example, used QR codes for a petition drive. Together with a catchy tagline on their poster “Do Something Small to Save Something Big”, the QR code opened to a mobile-friendly petition page aimed at saving Flathead River Valley, providing an easy and simple way for people to take action for a cause. Netwits Think Tank covered more case studies of how non-profits have effectively utilized QR codes.
Here are five reasons why non-profits should use QR codes to raise awareness:
- QR codes are FREE and EASY to generate: Contrary to popular belief, QR codes are not complicated to develop. Sites such as Kaywa, Delivr, and QR Stuff can create QR codes for free.
- QR codes are cost-effective: QR codes serve as an additional dissemination channel, enabling non-profits to share information across platforms at low cost.
- QR codes are creative ways to increase awareness and build engagement: In today’s information overload society, non-profits can utilize QR codes’ creative usage to stand out from the noise, increasing the chance of stakeholder participation.
- QR codes engage mobile audiences: With 14 million people in the US reportedly scanning just in June 2011 alone, QR code usage is projected to increase. Non-profits can take a slice and tap a growing market with the use of QR codes.
- QR codes are effective in youth engagement: Of the 14 million people that reportedly scanned in June, half the scanners are between the ages of 18-34 with those ages 25-34 most likely to scan twice. This proves that QR codes serve as great tool for non-profits that target the younger demographic.
Once QR codes are generated, usage and participation are only limited by the imagination. For non-profits, QR codes serve as a low-cost and creative tool in raising awareness and building engagement. For tips on how non-profits can utilize QR codes to raise awareness, visit my webinar here.
About the author: Vanessa Co has more than five years experience working on Public Relations and Strategic Communications for the World Bank Group. Vanessa specializes in online production and digital communications. She is currently pursuing her graduate degree from Georgetown University’s Masters of Professional Studies in Public Relations and Corporate Communications. You can find Vanessa on Linkedin.