How QR Codes Can Be Used to Increase Fan Engagement
by Mitch Tor | Last Updated: Feb 17, 2022
For some, the Olympics offer a perfect way to unwind from a long day and catch up on everyone’s favorite sport - curling. For others actually involved in the planning process of the games, it can be quite stressful. Pair a monumental international event with a pandemic and you have a recipe for a logistics nightmare. The 2022 Olympic Games have been appropriately nicknamed “The Logistics Olympics” for these reasons and more. Luckily, the Olympic Committee and those in charge are equipped with QR code technology to aid in some of the specific difficulties facing this year’s event. Let’s take a look at how officials are keeping the games safe and running. Going for the Gold with QR CodesWith the recent surge in COVID-19 cases, athlete safety has been a pressing concern to ensure the success of the 2022 Olympic Games. With the help of contact tracing and QR code technology, the games are armed with a powerful tool to keep athletes and spectators alike safe. Each athlete is given a unique QR code for entrance into the games. If an athlete tests negative for the virus, the color of the QR code will display green. Athletes and citizens are then allowed to enter any Olympic venue if the QR code indicates they are free from exposure. The color of the QR code can change however, if the athlete is exposed to the virus throughout the duration of the games, restricting access to certain facilities depending on the level of exposure. Officials hope this technology will be helpful in keeping the athletes safe, assisting in a smooth progression of the Olympics. Contactless PaymentsOn top of ensuring everyone’s safety, QR codes are also being used during the Olympics for contactless payments using China’s new digital currency, E-CNY.To make a purchase, a QR code pops up at the merchant’s point of sale for the customer to scan when checking out.. This technology has been in development for quite some time and the Olympic games will be a test run for the digital currency before it sees widespread deployment. More Than Just the OlympicsThe Beijing Olympics isn’t the only place where QR codes are being used to amplify the experiences of the sports world. The NBA recently launched a QR code campaign to enhance the All-Star weekend in Cleveland, Ohio. Scattered in 10 locations throughout the city are QR codes, which when scanned, bring people directly to a non-fungible token (NFT) of All-Star court art of the past and present. The QR codes are a fun way for the NBA to engage with the community leading up to the All-Star game and market the NFT collection associated with the weekend. While not as operationally imperative, the NBA has been able to find other engaging ways to integrate QR code technology into the spectacle of the sport. Engraved in the base of the Milwaukee Buck’s 2021 Championship ring is a QR code that when scanned takes users to highlights of the team’s 2021 championship run. All of these examples show how QR code technology can be used to elevate the fan experience to help in both the operations and marketing of events. Consumers are becoming more familiar with QR code technology, which leaves the door open for marketers in how they engage with audiences on mobile.