Is it just me, or has anyone else noticed that mobile phone service providers are as aggressive as the stereotypical used car salesman?  Just yesterday I had a salesperson enter our showroom (in spite of the “No Soliciting” sign on the door!) and unsuccessfully pitch how spending $60.00 more a month would tremendously improve my phone reception, my coverage, and by extension, my life.  Now, I am not immune to the allure of the latest technology, finding myself beguiled by television commercials for the newest, cutting-edge smart phone, I just haven’t been willing to make the investment.  In my mind, why buy a smart phone when I am presently tied to a dumb service plan; I may have unlimited everything, but it won’t do me any good if I have no bars standing in my front yard, phone in hand, extended heaven-ward praying for a better signal.

My pitiful plan aside, I am intrigued by all an iPhone or Android can do.  For instance, users with the appropriate app on their phones can take a picture of a QR (Quick Response) matrix barcode and be automatically redirected to a company’s website.  While initially designed to track parts for the automotive industry, the practical applications are limitless.  I first saw this used on a commercial real estate sign where the link took you to all the pertinent information about the property, including photographs, the realtor’s contact information and all-important asking price.  Recently, the design team at Wraps for Less and Orlando Signs and Banners have included QR codes on many of our finished products, from signage to vehicle wraps – all you need is a flat surface.  Trailers and food trucks with QR codes can post menus and daily specials, delivery vans and box trucks can link potential customers to retail locations, and installation vehicles can direct traffic to a list of services provided.

According to a study taken during June 2011, 14 million mobile users scanned a QR code or a barcode.  58% of those users scanned from home (i.e., print media) and 39% scanned from retail locations.  53% of these mobile users were men between 18 and 34, who have historically been an elusive demographic to market to.  When you consider the growing popularity of 4G mobile devices, these numbers will only increase exponentially.  In fact, Santa is on the QR code bandwagon as Macy’s has incorporated the distinctive pixilated box shape in the center of their trademark red star in their holiday campaigns.  In this economy, staying current and ahead of your competition is what will keep your business viable and relevant.  Contact the friendly professionals at Wraps for Less and Orlando Signs and Banners to see how we can help you use this box to think “outside the box.”

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