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Canon develops multifaceted mobile initiatives to facilitate in-store shopping

Camera manufacturer and digital-imaging giant Canon U.S.A. Inc. is engaging shoppers throughout North America with a multifaceted mobile marketing program.

Canon tapped direct digital marketing software and service provider Knotice to power the mobile Web and 2D bar code technology. Labels containing a Microsoft Tag 2D bar code have been placed on select Canon products at retailers such as Best Buy and Staples.

“This is an exciting time for us as we’re just beginning to explore the many new communication channels afforded to us by the mobile environment and their impact on our branding efforts and sales performance,” said Michael Duffett, senior director of printer marketing in the consumer imaging group at Canon U.S.A., Lake Success, NY.

“We’re at the jumping off point today, so our efforts will only increase in this space as we learn and adapt to the opportunities and challenges offered by mobile marketing technologies—not to mention our customer’s evolving needs,” he said.

Canon Inc.’s Canon U.S.A. is a provider of consumer, business-to-business and industrial digital imaging products and services.

Knotice specializes in interactive digital marketing communications that can be addressed to a specific individual.

Canon fodder
Consumers or store associates can use a smartphone to scan a Microsoft Tag that launches a device-optimized mobile microsite.

The site contains user-generated ratings and reviews, video product demonstrations and detailed product information.

Rather than promote mobile Web initiatives that create competition solely on price, Canon wants to keep shoppers in store by blending the research and purchase phases of the retail experience.

“This system gives us a window into the shopping experience in-store that is currently unavailable,” Mr. Duffett said. “We can see what information shoppers are considering when making a buying decision.”

Knotice claims that its retail mobile services for Canon are effective, in part, because the entire platform can be in market throughout North America in as few as two weeks, literally in the time it takes to print and deploy the labels containing the Microsoft Tag.

Canon’s objective is not only to enhance the shopping experience for consumers, but to launch a scalable mobile strategy that blends the best aspects of the online and offline shopping experiences.


“In the case of Canon’s point-of-retail solution Knotice delivered shopper-friendly mobile Web content that is both optimized for each user’s device, as well as optimized to provide the right content and information that shoppers are looking for to help make a purchase decision, including user-generated ratings and reviews for the very Canon product they are researching,” said Bryce Marshall, director of strategic services at Knotice, Akron, OH.

“Using Microsoft Tag for the 2D bar code solution creates a smooth and seamless link from the physical store display to the mobile shopping aid,” he said. “For Canon and many other manufacturers and CPG marketers, interacting with shoppers at the point of retail through their mobile devices is a game-changer.

“Not only do mobile interactions using Web, apps, SMS and 2D bar codes provide cost-effective, scalable and fast-to-market solutions for marketers, but consumers are already primed for these types of valuable interactions.”

Final Take
Dan Butcher, associate editor, Mobile Commerce Daily