Sunday, February 21, 2010

My Assesment of Scanlife in Esquire

I am not a fan of proprietary barcodes or the content they are connected with. Scanlife's EZcode is a matrix code (or 2D bar code) created by ETH Zurich and was exclusively licensed to Scanbuy in 2006. EZcodes are not open like QR codes although they have been successful in getting early placements in widely distributed publications. Most other Scanlife campaigns I've seen lead users directly to a video.

Featured in the March issue of Esquire in the style pages, EZcodes give readers the opportunity to buy clothes out of the magazine if they scan the code associated with the product. Users are directed on their mobile phone to an uneventful landing page where they have the option to buy as well read style tips linking to Esquire's regular website. I was ultra unimpressed
. This is a step forward for the sake of awareness but there are many more opportunities outside the closed doors of Scanlife.

Here is a screen shot of the landing page for the suede boots. Blah! It can't even read, "Buy THEM now." Where's the connection here? I could go on and on about this but I'm going to save it. Tappinn will speak for itself.

The First Newspaper in India to Use QR Codes

The Indian newspaper Mid-Day has become the first in the country to use QR Codes as a way to give readers a more interactive experience. Although the QR code was only used once to begin with, the newspaper plans to roll them out more frequently as readers become acquainted with the technology. So far the QR codes direct readers an mp4 video.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Blackberry Loves QR Codes.

Although most Blackberry's aren't optimized for web browsing like devices such as the Iphone and Google's Nexus One, they have seen the value in QR codes to exchange information in the mobile world.

Blackberry messenger 5.0 has included a QR code reader in the latest software update. Users can now share QR codes containing links, phone numbers and other contact information. Better yet, they can read Tappinn QR codes in magazines and retail stores using the phone's camera and the BB messenger app together.

Welcome to the future, Blackberry. Please ditch the keyboard and get bigger screens too!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

HTC Legend With Android 2.1


Gizmoto..............."Not only is HTC's Legend their best-looking Android phone to date, I'm going to throw my hat in the ring and say it's the best-looking Android phone period. Created from a single piece of aluminum, it's more than MacBook-esque"

"Running Android 2.1 with HTC Sense, it's got a 3.2-inch AMOLED screen with 320 x 480 pixels, capacitive but of course. The camera is 5.0-megapixels with autofocus and flash; there's a 600 MHz processor and 512MB ROM (with microSD card slot), 384MB of RAM. The battery is 1300 mAh, so a bit less than the Hero, and the usual Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and GPS are included"

The Green Cow Uses QR Barcodes and Pay-Per Performance

The Green Cow, eatery and catering company, has decided to use QR Codes to promote their menu and build Facebook friends. The quaint New Jersey establishment bordering the Hudson River serves a variety of cuisine between breakfast, lunch and dinner. Nestled on the corner of Essex and Hudson, across the street from Goldman Sachs. The Green Cow sees a ton of foot traffic which they are hoping QR codes will help convert.

"Almost everyone we see now has a smartphone!" says, Shobaum, Green Cow manager. "Why not give them the opportunity to share our menu on their phone!? Not only that, we have made it easy for those same smartphone users to become a fans of us on Facebook and read our Google reviews!"

Green Cow used the Tappinn platform to create the content or "Smart Site" used for the campaign. They built pages centered around each portion of their menu linking other pages back together. Basically the site functions like an app but works across all mobile platforms so an Iphone user can view the same content as a Nexus One user without having to download separate apps. The platform also generates the QR code that smartphone users can scan to be directed to the content. Even more shocking was what the cost to build the Smart Site. ZERO, NADA. The only charge is when people actually engage with the QR codes, and it's pennies. What a Phenomenal concept! QR code pay-per performance marketing is the future.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Nokia n900 Pictures

Here are some pictures of the new Nokia N900. This device will be rockin Maemo OS with a firefox mobile browser available. We've heard a lot about Firefox mobile, this looks to be the first device we will see with it.

Not sure about the stylus. Soooooo 2005!

ITG WindowsXP Phone Looks Sick

The ITG xpPhone is set to be the world's first Windows XP phone. It's being released in China first so we'll be able to get a glimps before it hit's the U.S. I'm interested in this Windows XP OS. Here are some more pics

Samsung "Wave" Pictures

Build Social Voice InThe Retail Enviroment With Mobile Content

Retailers need to wake up and smell the roses. I don't get it! Instead of RUNNING from the wireless/mobile revolution, they need embrace it! Give it a big sloppy kiss!

Brands and Retailers that sell out of physical (brick and mortar) locations have opportunities unlike ANYONE in this new era of social marketing. Think about it, shoppers are now carrying around the internet in their pockets! Give them the opportunity to share YOUR content while they are in the store! Target products and allow them to easily become a fans on Facebook from their phones. Walking into a retail store should be like stepping on the moon, a galaxy of wireless content swirling. The possibilities are endless.

Retailers need to create a wireless information superhighway within their walls, beaming with Wi-Fi and mobile engagement touch points such as QR codes. Give shoppers digital content to take with them or share on social networking sites. THIS is the future the the retail environment. ENGAGE the mobile user! MOBILE MOBILE MOBILE. I'm out of breath.

The"connected" shopper can be lethal for your brand if you can harness their power. GAME CHANGER. Call them Mr and Mrs Viral. Focus on creating digital content that they can share from the store and you won't regret it. NO, I'm NOT talking about apps!

There is a HUGE reason that we haven't seen retailers latch on to this concept! It hasn't been EASY enough to create the type of mobile content needed to engage the shopper. Tappinn is a platform for retailers to create/publish unique mobile web pages (Smart Sites) FAST and EASY using QR codes as hyperlinks in the physical world. Mobile advertising is too focused on apps right right now. Marketing is all about delivering the EXACT message ant the EXACT time. Creating "Smart Sites" for products for the retail environment that can be updated and managed is the only way to deliver VALUABLE FRIENDABLE SHAREABLE content to shoppers so they will engage with you in the future while sharing you in the present.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

South By Southwest Festival Using QR Codes!

South By Southwest (SXSW)2010 offers a unique experience of music, films and technology. The festival and conference runs March 12-21 on Austin, TX. This year SXSW is giving attendees an easier way to keep track of who they connect with at the shows. Each person will be given a badge with their photo along with a QR code. The QR code acting as a "follow me" button for smartphone users who scan the code with their phone. Once the QR code is scanned, it automatically stores the users information on their my. SXSW, a social site tied to the event. SXSW say's this should cut back on amount of paper waste left behind in the wake of event by eliminating business cards . Also, it's a more seamless way of making connections within a mass of people.

I am thrilled that SXSW decided to QR codes. We will be paying close attention any feedback attendees have regarding the new technology. QR codes have a variety of applications and this is just another example of that.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Ralph Lauren QR Codes

Mars Tappman. Alien from Planet QR

Meet Mars Tappman, QR's first alien to arrive in the US. We found a home for him at the Tappinn office where he will be offering his insights on new forms of mobile communication. Mars was born 3000 years ago so he's seen some changes in the advertising world. He's a phenomenal addition to our staff!

The Red Wings Use QR Codes in Programs and They Didn't Call ME

WHAT! They didn't call me!? Being a Michigan native, I assumed that I would be the first to know about any decisions made about QR Codes by the Red Wings. Lol.

The Detroit Red Wings have stepped into a new light in my eyes. They become the FIRST professional US sports team to use QR codes. The code is featured in their game program and leads users to a video posted below corresponding with the page. The COOL thing about launching something like this in a sports arena is the ability to get everyone's attention. The Red Wings did just by broadcasting an instructional video about QR codes on the big screen. I LOVE it. That's the type of support QR codes need to get rolling.

I'm pretty pumped about the step forward in the QR world BUT let's look at what the Red Wings should have done. My questions is, where's the friggin CONTENT?

The QR code directs users this video, THAT'S IT. According to Nicole Yellan, the Red Wings social network director, there are many more videos to follow. She seemed quite happy with the performance of video media in this type of atmosphere sighting a statisitc that I didn't understand. I'm just thinking about how I would even be able to HEAR in a noisy arena atmosphere to enjoy the video on my Iphone.

The Red Wings SHOULD have created a Smart Site with the video links being just ONE element. They could've included exclusive content about players w/stats and locker room photos, each one being sharable on social networks. NOW we're talking! This could've been executed easily through Tappinn's Smart Site Platform. Not only that, the tracking analytics associated with each page would help the Red Wings make future decisions in the mobile space based on performance.

My only hope is that the Red Wings consider putting together they're next QR code campaign on Tappinn. Think 2010 is off to a rockin start for QR codes. You ain't seen nothin....

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Weather Channel Using QR Codes

I got a few call about this! The Weather Channel is officially the FIRST mainstream TV channel to use QR codes. Of course Google is behind it. Go figure

The TappInn's, QR Codes First Family.

Just put this together. Dope. These are the Tappinn's, the worlds first QR Code family.

Google Buzz Impresses ME

I've been reading a lot of negative buzz about Google's new service, Buzz. People are calling this Google's attempt at social media trying to compete with Facebook and Twitter. WTF?! Buzz looks NOTHING like either one of those social sites. Adding GPS into the mix was a game changer as has evolved into social networking sites like Foursquare and Loopt that are GPS focussed. Google maps is GOOGLE MAPS. I think they will be able to find ways to use that to their advantage in the mobile arena. You don't need to know the person to ask them about a restaurant that they are eating at but would just like to see their opinion. There is an enormous demand for this. People don't need to be friends someone to find a review or opinion useful. Anybody who compares Buzz to Facebook or Twitter is misguided.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Smart Sites and QR Codes For Every Mobile OS Platform. Most Apps are CRAP.

Apps aren't the answer for MOST brands when it comes to mobile advertising. If you are considering investing in an app for your brand as the future of YOUR mobile advertising initiatives, STOP! Mobile content needs to be formatted for ALL mobile devices. Apps are cool but involve way too much time and money to develop and are often agency FLUFF. Consumer brands need to put their effort towards CONTENT. Not only that, they need to focus their efforts on a much broader philosophy. Mobile content needs to be ever-changing, location based, and shareable on social networks. Delivering unique content based on location and demographics needs to be easy and fast. Often apps are controlled by the software company who built them allowing little to no flexibility for the brand. The mobile terrain is difficult to navigate with such a static outlet. Look at the option of a Smart Sites/ QR Code campaign. This gives brands the ability to change content in real time and manage 100's pages specifically focussed on targeted groups.

Smart Sites are "micro" web pages formatted for ALL mobile browsers. These sites are content rich and drama free. NO banner adds or spam, just targeted, shareable information. Smart Sites are giving advertisers the ability to be flexible and transparent with shoppers, which is exactly what they deserve. Using QR codes as hyperlinks in the physical world to access Smart Site content will dominate the next couple years as the new territory of opportunity in advertising. The mobile web just turned 6 years old! It hasn't even started 1st grade yet!

Tappinn Smart Site Building Platform makes publishing mobile content to the web is a breeze. Create and deploy sites in minutes! Create catalogs of Smart Sites for each product and attach QR codes to packaging, displays, signage, magazines and newspapers. Engage shoppers in the retail environment with QR codes linking physical to digital. Allow shoppers to TappInn to your products and share them with the world.

TappInn QR Codes Wake Up Print Advertising

Print is DEAD. I'm sure you've all heard. DON'T BELIEVE IT! Print is NOT dead but the advertising revenue model IS! Wireless connectivity has evolved to where it can HELP magazines and newspapers if they are SMART. Sure, there is far less print media distributed today that there was 10 years ago. Sure, ad revenue from print has plummeted. Sure, the internet is everywhere. SURE SURE SURE. Let me tell you my friends, PRINT will be a cornerstone of the NEW "anywhere" media revolution. Call it a physical PROP in a virtual world. Print will be the dominate carrier of QR codes and other forms of technology to that will help market to the emerging mobile culture. Augmented reality and QR codes all need touchpoints to reach the masses and PRINT will offer that, in droves. Once print advertisers can find ways to interact with smartphone users via the mobile web they will open the door to all kinds of opportunities to create "viral print". Click-able print hasn't existed until now. Advertisers need to focus on engaging magazine readers by offering them value by digging deeper and engaging the ad with their mobile smartphone. Think about giving readers the ability to SHARE your ad from a magazine in a supermarket. Connecting mobile digital content with physical media is what TappInn is all about.

Monday, February 8, 2010

TappInn QR Code "Smart Site" Platform

TappInn is the first online Mobile Ad Content/ QR-Code Deployment Platform. Create and publish authentic, mobile "Smart Sites" instantly! "Smart Sites or (Smart Ads)" are targeted, unique pages that can be accessed through QR codes on mobile smartphone devices. These sites are spam free, most are location based with unique information exclusive to the location. The content is fast, simple and easily shareable on social networks. Manage and track robust campaigns with 1000's of codes and pages. Create catalogs of mobile "Smart Sites" for product packaging and displays. TappInn makes it refreshingly easy to create and clone QR codes w/ (smart sites) on all forms of physical media, especially print. The platform is designed to create smart mobile content, run robust analytics and engage the world with QR codes.

Wireless broadband internet teamed with the evolution of the smartphone, has opened the doorto a NEW consumer. This "connected" consumer will engage heavily with QR codes in the retail environment or wherever they are prevalent. Web-based smartphones are selling like crazy and will only continue. Brands need to focus on delivering content to mobile devices! PERIOD. Banner ads and apps will NOT be the future of mobile advertising. Connecting physical and digital through QR codes and "Smart Sites" will enable the consumer to do more with your content and ultimately be the driver of YOUR brand message.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Omega Duratrans at Kenjo

The colors on the Omega Watch olympic duratrans look amazing! I was blown away when I stepped into the store. Beautiful duratrans!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Coolest Video I've Ever Seen (seriously)

Google has launched a series of videos about the creation of the Nexus One. Super cool.

Canvas Wrap Signage in Retail Stores

This look has always been a popular in the art world. Awesome in the retail environment.

Verizon's Palm Pre Targets Moms

These could be the FIRST smartphone ads targeted at Moms EVER. I dig it!

Premium Backlit Printing by The Duratran Company

Premium backlit printing by The Duratran Comapany. There's a reason why they work with the top luxury brands in the world.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Tag Heuer and The Duratran Company Work To Service Macy's

The Duratran Company and Tag Heuer have been partners for over a year now. Together they have been servicing signage requests from the top retailers in the world. Through the Duratran Company's signage ordering platform, Tag Heuer can deliver custom duratrans, posters and window vinyls to their accounts FAST. How Fast? Most orders are shipped within 48 hours with many orders shipping the same day! Not only does The Duratran Company's signage order platform run robust reports to manage 1000's of their retailer's signage, it allows sales reps for Tag Heuer to place duratran orders under their own unsername and password for their accounts. This cuts out an enormous step in the process creating a faster, smoother experience. When the visual managers for Tag Heuer log in they can see the signage requests from their sales reps and with one click can forward them on to The Duratran Company. This is an outstanding system that is about to get better.

Today the companies announced that they would be adding the department store giant Macy's into the mix. Macy's will have direct access to The Duratran Company's order platform to place Tag Heuer visual requests. "This it going to help everyone" said Casey Ford, CEO. "Macy's will enjoy incredible service and Tag Heuer will enjoy more sales.

Visuals are often overlooked by brand managers as a key ingredient to effective retail marketing. Tag Heuer acknowledges the importance of this and are encouraging retailers such as Macy's to order products that will assist sales of Tag Heuer watches. They understand that "1 size fits all" signage doesn't work and you have to be flexible when fielding requests. The Duratran Company gives Tag Heuer that advantage.

Wi-Fi Retailers. Where Are They?

I'm SHOCKED that retailers have not embraced smartphone users and the mobile web by offering shoppers free wi-fi within the store for a faster web experience. I walked into the Gap today in mid-town Manhattan and couldn't get wi-fi to my Iphone. WTF? Are they afraid, or just not concerned with my need to connect? More and more shoppers are using the mobile web to research products WHILE shopping. Why wouldn't retailers look to enhance this experience by offering them a fast way to explore products online while in the store? Every retailer should offer free wi-fi and embrace the mobile web within it's walls. It would give them the opportunity to create custom content that could ONLY be found in that particular store, a unique advantage over E-tailers.

Today marketing is all about delivering the RIGHT content and the RIGHT moment. What better place to offer unique digital content about products then in the actual store. This content needs to be formatted for ALL smartphone browsers and not just be some fancy fluffy iphone app. The content also should be easy to share and offer some sort of value. (mobile coupons, ect) Think about this... a store could makes it easy for smartphone users to Twitter or Facebook products while in your store. The ideas are endless!

There is an enormous opportunity for brick and mortar stores to capitalize on the mobile web and the connected shopper. Engaging consumers while in the store with valuable, sharable content about their products IS the future.
Where do you fit in? Are you giving away wi-fi to your shoppers? Is your content formatted for the mobile apocalypse?