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Ruby Tuesday gives app downloads a lift via QR codes

Ruby Tuesday is loading up its static magazine ads with calls-to-action that encourage consumers to download the company?s mobile application.

The QR codes are placed on Ruby Tuesday print ads that are running inside magazines including the January 2013 issue of Elle. The Ruby Tuesday app is available for iPhone and Android devices.

"Most users cruise magazines with a mobile device in hand or close by making it easy to scan a QR code to get an increased level of engagement with the brand is brilliant, and in most cases it is what is needed to make it easy to engage with the end-user," said Bobby Marhamat, founder of Hipscan, Menlo Park, CA.

"In addition to that you are able to send the user to the appropriate app store based on their device, which again cuts down the time a user needs to spend looking for an app," he said.

Mr. Marhamat is not affiliated with Ruby Tuesday. He commented based on his expertise on the subject.

Ruby Tuesday did not meet press deadline.

Scan to download
The magazine ads promote a print coupon for $10 off of two entrees at Ruby Tuesday. The offer is good through February 11, 2013.

Calls-to-action along the bottom of the page encourage users to download the company?s new app by scanning a QR code in the lower right-hand corner of the page.

The app is available for iPhone and Android devices, which is also illustrated on the page with graphics for each device.

When users scan the QR code, they are directed to a mobile site that users can click through to be directed to the correct app store.

Although the landing page does explain some of the benefits from downloading the app, the print-to-mobile experience might be more streamlined if users were dumped directly into the app store. This could also help the company accumulate more app downloads.

In fact, Mr. Marhamat said that clients can see up to a 25 percent increase in app downloads by directly dumping a user into the correct app store.

Users can then download the app to their device.

Via the app, consumers can stay up-to-date on Ruby Tuesday news and check-out the brand?s menu.

The app is also loaded with offers to drive in-store traffic and uses notifications to let users know when a new offer pops up.

Offers can be viewed by syncing the app with a user?s Facebook account.

Consumers can also find directions to their nearest stores by using their device?s GPS or by typing in their ZIP code.

The Ruby Tuesday print ad

App download
Nowadays, consumers often multitask while consuming multiple pieces of media, including magazines.

Giving users an way to take a direct action on a print ad is a great way for marketers to incorporate new technology into static pages.

In this case, Ruby Tuesday is able to take a piece of traditional marketing and add a mobile component that can be used to track how many app downloads the campaign garners.

"A QR code campaign helps build loyalty by allowing the end user to instantly engage with your brand," Mr. Marhamat said.

"Tie your QR code to a coupon, an online ordering system or a mobile newsletter and reap the benefits of a highly engaged clientele that interacts with your brand, sees a direct benefit and will keep coming back for more," he said.

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