Long Island Pulse Magazine is now using 2D barcodes and gets it right from start to finish.
First, look at the magazine's home page (see top image below). On the top of the page, above the navigation bar, there is an image of a 2D code with the tag line "Do You 2D?" Plain and simple. People who are not familiar with 2D and want to learn more can click on the image and be taken to a page which fully explains 2D (see bottom image below). On this page, LI Pulse explains what 2D barcodes are and how they can now be found in the magazine. Additionally, in five easy steps, the magazine explains how and where to download a reader app and how to scan codes.
While a number of publishers are making use of 2D barcodes for editorial and in-house advertising purposes, I have yet to see any one of them make reference to the codes on their websites, and I don't know why. The communication process should go both ways, from print to digital and digital to print, this way all bases are covered. Should someone see information on 2D online then they will purposely look for it in print, and vice versa.
Second, when I read through the magazine's media kit, in the section titled "Vertical Platform" 2D barcodes was listed along with web, video, eblasts, events, experiential, street team, contests, texting, etc. Here too, I have yet to notice other publication's media kits making mention of 2D as a platform for advertisers.
What this is showing me is that LI Pulse's publisher is firmly committed to using 2D in the magazine and wants the latest in technology to be available to its readers/subscribers, as well as its advertisers.
Third, in the front of the magazine, there is a section that basically takes the information from the website and explains to readers what 2D is all about. Smartly, the publisher makes use of the same "Do You 2D?" logo to tie print and digital together, which is perfect brand management.
Fourth, in looking through the magazine, there are a number of 2D codes displayed and all of them have a very appropriate and relevant calls to action. For example, there is an ad for a jewelry store and the code resolves to a product page with the ability to purchase. There is an ad for an event at a local bistro and wine bar and the code resolves to an RSVP form. A local summer fair has an advertisement and the code resolves to discount coupons. Whether each advertiser came up with their own scan resolve and offer, or the publisher helped them develop an idea, there is little doubt that readers will want to scan and take action.
In summary, this is the way a 2D campaign or program should work. Fully integrated between print and digital and with full disclosure (i.e., informing and educating readers on the technology). Also, to know that there is commitment from the top down goes a long way in getting everyone in the organization on board with the program.