Once here and there now they’re everywhere!
QR codes are becoming an increasingly popular way for people to link the physical world to their digital one. QR which stands for quick response has been by all standards a slow adoption in the West. The code was created by a Toyota subsidiary in 1994 for use in inventory. Currently they are being used in advertising campaigns across the globe.
Using a smart phone to “read” the code the user can be introduced to a digital experience of the designers choosing. Some of the most popular readers include BeeTagg, Scanlife, Shopsavvy, and, Red Laser.
Important things to consider when creating a QR code for marketing purposes:
- What does the user get for scanning the code (reaction= reward?)
- If sending your user to a website, is it mobile friendly ?
- Can the user scan the code?
For example is there Wifi or 3G/4G service where your code will be read? (the subway doesn’t have cell service!)
If placing a code on a billboard are their laws in your state against driving and using a mobile device?
Here are some creative uses for QR codes:
1. Need some Facebook friends? Twitter followers? Maybe you just need to get a QR shirt?
2. Use on your business cards. No typing required! Allow new connections instant access to your webpage, blog, video, or Vcard all with the ease of a scan. I’m always on the lookout for interesting business cards and I have a few that over the years I have held onto for no other reason than they are different. (hey I’ll take creative inspiration where ever it my come from!) This business card has an embossed QR code which makes it stand out.
3. New York City has embraced technology by using QR codes on their work permits. Allowing quick access to important documents and city codes, all while standing on the construction site!
4. Want to comparison shop while on the lot of your car dealership? QR codes are making it even easier to get a better understanding of the car you are about to buy. From simulation driving videos to fuel economy learn all you would ever want to know about care through the use of QR code technology. At a recent conference I attended the FORD Motor Company was sponsoring a scavenger hunt using QR codes. This perfectly explains the Reaction = Reward. They had hidden five unique codes throughout the event one was clearly visible at their main station the rest were not so obvious. If you found and scanned all five codes you received a prize. It was clever.
5. Want to learn more about political candidates? CNN used QR code technology during the most recent Republican Presidential Campaign. A scan here took users to debate extras. While I may not have been that interesting in getting anything extra during this debate, the code was an interesting way to engaging a TV audience. I look forward to seeing if more networks follow this lead and begin incorporating codes into their content.
6. Need a job? Get creative!