An Easter Surprise, Using QR Codes for Instant Sampling

April 25th, 2011

Which Wich

I’m a big fan of QR codes and similar technology. Maybe it’s my failing memory brought upon by encroaching middle age, but the ability to snap a photo of something rather than remember a URL is a big win in my estimation. In fact, we included 22 Microsoft Tags (similar to QR codes) in The NOW Revolution, so we could direct readers to a treasure trove of additional resources that expand and enhance the book.

I also really like the on-the-spot and in-the-moment potential for QR code usage. I had an excellent experience with a program of that type this weekend at Which Wich here in Bloomington, Indiana.

The fastest growing chain in the U.S. in 2010, Which Wich is a quick service sandwich restaurant that features uber-customization of your sandwich, and a unique ordering system (you mark a paper bag with your detailed preferences). Their sandwiches are excellent, as are the house-made salt and black pepper potato chips, and I’ve eaten at several Which Wich locations around the U.S. Until Saturday, however, I’d never tried a Which Wich cookie. But now I have. Here’s how it happened:

  1. I saw a sign promoting the Which Wich Facebook page. So of course I checked it out on my phone while waiting for our sandwiches
  2. I saw a Facebook wall post from the company about a QR promotion
  3. I showed my wife, who commenced operation “Find the QR Code”. She spotted it in the collection of customer-decorated paper bags that are present in all locations, and I snapped the code (nice bunny ears)!
  4. I instantly received a coupon, and redeemed for a free cookie

Which Wich QR CodeWhich Wich Coupon

And it was GOOOD. Based on this one, simple use of QR technology and instant sampling, the chances of me ordering a cookie next time at Which Wich went from 0% to 100%. That’s just smart business.

The only part of this program I would change is that their Foursquare page didn’t mention the QR program whatsoever. That’s a missed opportunity for integration and amplitude.

Otherwise, nice job by Which Wich demonstrating how on-premise use of QR technology can create real-time sampling and a subsequent increase in average order size downstream. Well played.

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