Couponing company Valpak is tagging its direct mail pieces with quick response (QR) codes, beginning with its July mailings scheduled to reach homes July 7. The company is partnering with three TV networks for outside-the-envelope QR code promotions that will run in Valpak mailings from July through September, as well as enabling local advertisers to add QR codes to their listings inside envelopes.
QR codes for Valpak’s July mailings will promote TNT’s Rizzoli & Isles series, and August mailings will support HGTV’s Design Star show.
Michael Vivio, president of Cox Target Media, said the company has signed a TV network for its September mailings but declined to identify the broadcaster. He added that Valpak will distribute 120 million direct mail pieces over the three-month time period.
The campaign is the company’s first to integrate QR codes nationally. Valpak partnered with mobile marketing company Sparq.me on the initiative.
“Of the consumer interest, [QR codes] allow us to provide a richer experience and reinforce that we’re out there in the marketplace as a total solution for advertisers,” said Vivio. “We’re able to provide in-home [marketing] with a very well read product and then link digital with it.”
Consumers can scan the QR codes to enter an online sweepstakes related to that month’s featured show. Additionally, the QR codes will direct consumers to a sample video of each program. Winners of July’s sweepstakes will receive a trip to New York, and August winners will be sent $5,000 for a room makeover.
Sparq.me will collect QR code interaction metrics and share that data with Valpak, which will reveal that information to its advertisers, said Vivio. He said Valpak will not share with advertisers consumers’ personally identifiable information submitted via the online sweepstakes without consumers’ consent.
Paige Hardwick, VP of on-air strategy and creative services at HGTV, said via email that the network “will be comparing the interactions of the QR code consumer against the online entry consumer, measuring this new tool against our previous promotions which have been online only.”
Consumers who enroll in a sweepstakes more than once during the eligibility period will be obligated to opt-in to Valpak’s email marketing program.
Valpak tested QR code integration during its “Kitchen Bakeover” sweepstakes that ran from February 21 to April 8. Vivio said the pilot program ran in Atlanta, Chicago and San Francisco.
The test “proved that our consumers — especially in the 25-to-44 [year-old] demographic, which is where our partners and we want to be — interact with QR codes to a surprising extent,” said Vivio.
The QR code campaign is the latest in a string of digital integrations for Valpak. In March, the company partnered with mobile application developer Metaio GmbH to deliver location-based digital coupons via the developer’s augmented reality application Junaio. Last November, Valpak launched deals site Valpak Deals.