As the digital mobile marketing platform continues to evolve, the fashion industry has been taking serious strides to keep up. A smart new tool that fashion brands hoping for more customer engagement have been adopting is the QR Code.
In existence since the 1990’s and originally designed for Japan’s automotive industry, these black and white 2d images allow smartphone users to gain a deeper connection and a more dynamic interaction with a brand via digital links. Upon downloading a QR scanner application onto their mobile phones, and then scanning a QR code, offline users are instantly linked into the online world as they are led to specific sites unique to each code. With the explosion of smartphone mobile users the world over, the number of brands adhering to this latest means of marketing only continues to grow.
Fashion brands have employed the QR Code marketing technique in-store at their retail locations in order to enhance the customer shopping experience. QR codes are also printed in promotional materials- flyers, advertisements, posters, billboards and the like in order to drive more customers their way.
Fashion brands in the digital marketing trend
Ralph Lauren was one of the first fashion brands to pick up on this digital marketing trend in 2008. Ralph Lauren printed QR codes onto their hangtags, catalogs, in-store signage and billboards. Customers scanning QR codes were sent to the brand’s website, where information about available colors and sizes, as well as style tips were to be found.
Red Valentino, the youth-oriented diffusion line of Valentino, on the other hand, used QR codes to entice potential customers to avail of a 10% discount upon purchase of their products.
Diesel employed the QR code technique to strengthen their social media platform. Customers who scanned codes found on the brand’s products in-store were sent to Diesel’s Fan Page.
Calvin Klein took a more risks approach to the matter, deciding to print a QR code on all its billboards. Those who scanned it were sent to a daring, skin-baring video advertisement online.
Lacoste filled their window displays with QR codes. Customers who scanned them (even when the stores were closed) were able to avail a 15 percent discount, as well as play certain games on their smartphones.
Even the New York Fashion Week was made more interesting with the help of these QR codes. L’Oreal teamed up with Glamour Magazine to convert a select number of taxis into roving shops. By scanning QR codes found onboard, passengers were able to go on a shopping spree without leaving their cabs.
Though there still exists a lot of debate regarding this relatively new tool’s bottom line effectiveness, it has been said that like all things marketing, the QR Code’s success relies greatly on each brand’s execution and implementation tactics. If seamlessly fused with the brand’s DNA and marketing strategy, this may just be what some fashion brands need to revitalize their customer approach and efficiently reach today’s mobile generation.