If you’ve noticed these new bar codes appearing on products and advertisements, you’re not alone. An increasing number of companies are using QR codes to direct consumers to their websites. And, yes, we have the ability to create your QR code and help with your QR campaign! Please keep reading to learn more.
Quick Response (“QR”) codes were developed by the Japanese in the mid-1990’s. If you want to read more about their function and their history you can see the wikipedia article. QR codes have become very popular as a way to get multimedia-rich data to end users. Consumers use their smartphone camera to read the QR code and then view a website with relevant content. For an example of this use of QR codes, scan here: (to learn how to scan, keep reading!)
You can also use a QR code to embed data onto your printed material. For example, you can add a QR code that holds text-based information like your phone number, address, or directions to your business. When a consumer scans this QR code, your information will appear directly on their phone. Each QR code can store 4.296 alphanumeric characters.
Share your contact information…they can save it to their address book.
Share your phone number…they can click on it to call you.
Share your cell phone number as an option to text…they can text you in one easy step.
For an example of this use of QR codes, scan here: (to learn how to scan, keep reading!)
Is this QR thing just a fad? We don’t think so. As of 4th quarter 2010, the USA was number one in terms of overall QR scans according to 3GVision.
How do I scan a QR code? (Or, what am I supposed to do with this thing?)
When a QR code grabs your interest and you want to learn more, you need to scan it with your smartphone. This is the only way to read a QR code. No smartphone, no scanning.
First, download one of the free QR code readers listed below to your smartphone. While others exist in the marketplace, these are our favorites.
Once the reader is downloaded, open the application on your smartphone and aim your phone’s camera at the QR code. The QR code reader that you just downloaded will act like a scanner and read the QR code. You’ll be able to see the QR code come into focus on your phone’s camera. Be patient and hold your hand steady.
Once the QR code reader has captured the data in the QR code, it will display the information right on your phone. The possibilities here are endless! You might see someone’s contact info pop up, or you might be directed to a web page or product demonstration video. Don’t worry…your phone won’t automatically take you to a web page. It will give you the option to follow the link.
Most companies using QR codes are trying to entice you to scan them. They are purposefully vague because they want to lure you into scanning. If they told you that the QR code led to a product demo, you might already “know” that you’re not interested. By simply printing the QR code with little description, the companies are hoping that you’ll be curious enough to scan. We know that this strategy is working because the number of scanned QR codes is steadily rising.
Free Readers for Popular Platforms:
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QR Code Reader
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QR Code Scanner Pro – Free
Size of a QR Code:
To ensure that consumers can easily scan your QR code, we recommend printing them at least 1/2 inch square. We’ll work with you to make sure the QR code is an appropriate size for your printed project.
QR Code Uses:
- Place a QR code in a printed ad and have it take the user to a video of that product being used
- Direct consumers to a YouTube video
- As a restaurant, host a special wine tasting and use QR codes to show videos of that wine being made
- As a real estate agent, have the QR code take the potential client to a walk-through of the home you are selling
- You can use a QR code on a business card for people to get your information directly on their cell phone
- Incorporate QR codes on lawn signs
- If you are a real estate agent, a potential client can find out more about the house you are selling
- If you are a contractor, a potential client can find out about what kind of projects you have done in the past with photos
- If you are a political candidate, a voter can learn more about your campaign message
TIP: The most important thing to remember is that the QR code MUST direct people to a smartphone-friendly web page! Otherwise, they will not be able to properly view your information.