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Benefit rewards New York shoppers via QR codes

Cosmetic brand Benefit is driving consumers to its two New York boutique locations via a mobile bar code initiative that gives users the chance to win beauty-themed prizes.

Benefit is spreading the word about this initiative in stores as well as with on-the-street marketing. The mobile bar code efforts also ties into Benefit’s social media marketing.

“The campaign is set up in a way that drives consumers from traditional media into the store,” said David Javitch, vice president of marketing at Scanbuy, New York.

“Getting potential shoppers into bricks-and-mortar [stores] is critical, and QR codes are a great way to do that from something targeted like direct mail,” he said.

Mr. Javitch is not affiliated with Benefit Cosmetics. He commented based on his expertise on the subject.

Benefit Cosmetics did not respond to press inquiries.

Beauty mark
Benefit Cosmetics is educating consumers about mobile bar codes by distributing the printed materials on the street.

Benefit Cosmetic employees are handing out print marketing materials in New York that feature a mobile bar code. The employees also explain what a QR code is, and the print mailer prompts users to scan the code using their mobile device.

Once users scan the mobile bar code, they are taken to a mobile-optimized page.

In order to enter the sweepstakes, consumers must “like” Benefit’s Facebook page, showing how brands such as Benefit are using mobile calls to action to create campaigns with multiple digital components.

Once users “like” the brand, they are sent an email that corresponds with the email address that their Facebook account is linked to.

The mobile-optimized email includes a QR code with a coupon attached that consumers must bring to a Benefit store in New York to redeem it. A link in the email directs users to a unique mobile Web site with the mobile bar code that can be activated by a Benefit employee in-store.

Each mobile bar code ties to a coupon that consumers can use towards Benefit products. Additionally, the mobile bar codes could be tied to the grand prize of $1,000 of Benefit services, including waxing, tinting and makeup application.

Mobile incentive
This is not the first initiative from Benefit to equip its stores with mobile technology.

Most recently, Benefit began using in-store tablets to educate users about its products and services (see story).

By using its employees, Benefit is able to show consumers first-hand how to use the technology while using its brand as an example.

Additionally, the mobile bar code initiative uses multiple digital initiatives including email, mobile Web and social media to create a well-rounded mobile campaign.

In particular, the tie with social media makes sense for Benefit as more consumers are accessing social media via mobile.

Similarly, Bath & Body Works used mobile bar codes to increase its social media following via a mailer (see story).

“The QR code takes someone who is already interested right to the content in a matter of seconds –  plus it gives the marketer intelligence on what media is driving interest,” Mr. Javitch said.

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is editorial assistant at Mobile Commerce Daily, New York