Episode 26 - Reach New Customers Through Partnership Marketing




Today we're going to talk about something a little different, and also quite exciting, in terms of advertising opportunities related to Amazon. This Fall, Amazon took a rather distinctive and innovative step for an e-commerce giant when they entered the world of direct mail and introduced their first-ever product catalog.

The first toy catalog that they produced was unusual because it included embedded QR codes. This allowed shoppers to use the Amazon app to scan the product images in the catalog, which would then take them directly to the product page, where they could simply click the cart to complete the sale.

Our guest for today is Ryan Millman, the co-founder and CEO of UnDigital, an online platform that connects advertisers and retailers for package-advertising partnerships. This blend of direct mail and digital is not at all new to Ryan, so in today's episode, we're going to dig deeply into the topic. Listen in to find out what Ryan has to share today, about this innovative and effective marketing tool that's so easy to deploy that literally anyone can do it.

Something that we are utilizing very effectively with advertisers on the digital platform is the ability to produce a catalog of your products, a small catalog with QR codes placed into the packages of complimentary retailers in our marketplace, and basically have the same level of success that Amazon is having.
— Ryan Millman


  • Ryan gives the background of UnDigital, and the kind of work they do.

  • How Ryan sees Amazon's use of scalable images directing people to their product pages playing out, moving forward.

  • The way that Amazon is going to benefit from their innovative, new product catalogs.

  • Ryan sees this as the beginning, and as more and more companies adopt QR, it will become more commonplace to the consumer.

  • How Ryan sees retailers in the marketplace having the same level of success that Amazon is having, with QR codes in their catalogs.

  • How Ryan sees this kind of strategy playing out for smaller retailers, or brands that don't have the benefit of an app with such a high rate of adoption.

  • Being relevant to the end user is really the goal of marketing.

  • Ryan explains how the codes can be used in a brand's catalog, in the form of product inserts, to drive either repurchasing or the purchasing of  a new product.

  • You can go about measuring the conversion rate, the impact, and the cost of a particular product with QR codes.

  • QR codes are similar to the behavior of any type of digital marketing campaign.

  • Ryan explains why this would be a good alternative form of advertising and marketing for products, based on the acquisition costs.

  • At UnDigital, they don't want any of their advertisers to take on large buys without knowing how things are being performed. So they recommend testing very small quantities initially, even with really large retailers.

  • Why this marketing channel package advertising is really so powerful.

  • Ryan explains that this kind of advertising, with QR codes inserted into the packaging, is a great fit for most product category types, and it's likely to play really well with the next generation of buyers.

  • Ryan foresees a widespread adoption of this kind of advertising, even in places like restaurants and food stores, in the coming years.

  • Ryan's recommendation for the best-use scenario for QR codes inserted into packaging.

  • With an iPhone, you don't even need to have the app. Simply open the camera and hold it over the barcode. It will open the URL  that you've placed within the QR code and you will be directed right to the product page and the shopping cart.

  • For Android, you will still need to download a QR scanning app.

  • Ryan gives some great tips to bear in mind when deciding to use this kind of marketing.

  • In Ryan's opinion, marketing success comes down to the ability to measure what you're doing, to find results, and to scale what's working.

  • There is a really powerful element of partnership marketing for smaller retailers and lesser-known brands, with this kind of advertising inside the packaging.


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