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As smartphones or similar device usage increases in popularity for automotive consumers to research vehicles, it's important to identify ways in which you can use the available technology to help drive qualified traffic to your dealership.

QR codes; also known as Quick Response Codes, aren't that new anymore, yet in my opinion dealerships are only scratching the surface on how they can be used as an advertising and marketing (yes there's a difference) resource to promote various programs at the dealership level.

Here are 3 ways that you can implement QR codes into your advertising/marketing efforts to drive more showroom traffic.

1. On Your Website

This may sound odd at first, but think about the impact you could have in driving traffic to your dealership if you placed a QR code on your homepage or VDPs that had a caption along the lines of, "Take us with you!" or something to that affect. The hope here is that when the customer leaves their home, your mobile optimized website is on hand and ready to go. The objective is to keep your brand and image at the top of that consumers mind the next time they open their mobile browser.

Alternatively, you could do the same thing on any of your fixed ops pages that leads the consumer to a mobile optimized coupon that they can bring in to the dealership for discounts on oil changes, repairs, or parts.

2. In Your Print Advertising

Kick things up a notch by assigning a QR code to every vehicle listing that you advertise. You'll want to make sure that they specifically link to the VDP for that vehicle and not just your home page. That would defeat the purpose.

Imagine your customer reading the news paper or automotive magazine and having access to more vehicle information on-the-go! At first thought, it may seem like this strategy would prevent the phone from ringing, but what your dealership visits increase dramatically. You see, online consumers want fast access to information; they don't want to jump through hoops to get it. Once the customer is on your mobile site, they'll have access to advanced features like "click-to-call" and maps integration for easy directions to your dealership.

3. On Your Business Cards

Here's one for you. Of course you've seen QR codes on business cards that either direct the user to the dealer's website or saves their contact information right? What about promoting each of your sales people with their own landing page on the site where their QR code leads? This works great for dealerships who have employees that speak different languages. Promote the fact that you speak different languages, or show off the personalities of your employees. This is a great strategy to show the community that human beings work at the dealership which will also be something unique you can do to set you apart from your competition. Just be sure to include a lead capture form on each of those landing pages.

There are undoubtedly a Novemdecillion (it's a word, look it up) ways to effectively and creatively use QR codes in your dealership's advertising and marketing. These are just a few that I thought of to get the juices flowing.

How are you using QR codes and what's working for you?

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