Mobile Commerce Daily is now Retail Dive: Mobile Commerce! Click here to learn more!

New York magazine, Crumbs Bake Shop debut QR codes with incentivized campaign

This is the first time that New York magazine has used QR codes for a marketing program. The initiative is being used to build up hype for the magazine’s New York Deals program, which is a list of edited deals and offers that is emailed out every day to opted-in consumers.

“For the New York Deals promotion with Crumbs we wanted to make sure we leveraged the print magazine as well as our digital properties,” said Francesca Sacasa, project manager of business development at New York magazine, New York.

“We included a URL on our print ads, but also provided a QR code so that people could easily find the promotion page on their phones,” she said.

“The QR code allowed us to set up one-step shortcut right to the deal page where you can get your cupcake voucher. The thinking here was to encourage conversions by making the process as smooth as possible.”

Sweeten the deal
Copy at the top of the mobile-enabled print ad reads, “Get a free cupcake from Crumbs Bake Shop when you sign up for New York Deals.”

Underneath, a call-to-action placed next to the prominent QR code encourages consumers to scan the QR code to redeem their cupcake. The URL is also promoted.

When consumers scan the QR code, they are directed to the page on New York Deals’ mobile site to view the offer.

From there, they can click through to either sign-in to their New York Deals account or sign-up by syncing the site with their Facebook account.

Consumers then fill out a quick page of information, which includes their name and email address. Users can then opt-in to New York Deals.

Additionally, buttons at the bottom of the page encourage consumers to share the content via Facebook and Twitter, which helps New York magazine draw in consumers.

The offer is then emailed to consumers. The offer can be used at any Crumbs Bake Shop location in New York and expires on April 30.

The deal can be redeemed by printing out the email and showing it at the point-of-sale in-store.

Savvy readers
New York magazine also recently debuted a new iPad application that lets users read a digital edition of the weekly magazine. The app also live streams content from New York magazine’s Web sites (see story).

As consumers continue to use their mobile devices in tandem while reading publications, it is important for publishers to weave interactive opportunities into both print and digital media.

In this case, New York is smart to offer consumers an incentive – a free cupcake – as a way to boost participation in its New York Deals program.

Additionally, by collecting emails and driving newsletter sign-ups, New York can target consumers in the future and build a stronger one-on-one relationship with readers.

“We are always mindful that 20 percent or more of our traffic is mobile and half of social media engagement is on mobile devices,” said Ken Sheldon, executive director of audience development at New York magazine.

“Therefore we try to ensure our promotions are mobile-friendly in terms of rendering and that our social media contests work on mobile devices as well,” he said.

“We prioritize efforts that would go on the appropriate devices. For example, iPad visitors to our websites will often see intercept promotions for our iPad apps tailored to their iPad screens.”

Final Take
Lauren Johnson is associate reporter on Mobile Commerce Daily, New York