Wednesday, August 17, 2011

QR Codes Demystified

Posted on Wednesday, August 17, 2011 by International Coach Federation

QR codes (or quick response codes) are popping up all over marketing campaigns—and chances are, you’ve seen them on the packaging of your favorite foods in the grocery, on pages of the magazines you read or even on the back of a peer’s business card.

These simple codes may prove to be the next technological wave of marketing future.

The basis of a QR code is to capture the intended audience at the peak of interest. They are basically two-dimensional bar codes, similar to what you would find on a clothing tag at the department store.

QR codes can be scanned using a scanner or reader on your smartphone—and they instantly take you online (be it a Twitter page, YouTube video, website, profile, etc.—anything with a dotcom address.)

If you own a smartphone and haven’t yet downloaded an app to read QR codes, do so today! There are numerous free options; simply search for “qr code reader.”

So how can you use a QR code to market your small business? There are three basic concepts you will need to think about to use these codes effectively to connect and engage your audience.
  1. Content. Where will the QR code take your audience? How will it be used? What is your customer call to action?
  2. Position. Where will the QR code be placed? Where will it be used?
  3. Share. Don’t just wait for people to stumble upon your code—find a way to share it! (Perhaps via email or social media.)
When it comes to actually creating your QR code(s), there are plenty of free options available online. Simply search “qr code creator” in your favorite search engine.

If you are looking for creative ways to use QR codes, check out this article by Fast Company.

Are you currently using QR codes in your marketing ventures? If yes, what ways have you found most effective? If you aren’t, how would you be able to incorporate a QR code in your marketing plan?

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