You may not have heard of QR codes yet, but if not, you’ll begin to see more and more of these square-shaped zig-zag, dotted, maze-like images.
Short for Quick Response (they can be read quickly by a cell phone), QR codes are used to take a piece of information from a printed or displayed image and put it in to your cell phone. You are seeing QR codes in magazine advertisements, billboards, web pages or even on someone’s t-shirt.
Once it is in your cell phone, it may give you details about that business (allowing users to search for nearby locations), or details about the person wearing the t-shirt, show you a URL which you can click to see a trailer for a movie, or it may give you a coupon which you can use in a local outlet.
The reason why they are more useful than a standard barcode is that they can store (and digitally present) much more data, including url links, geo coordinates, and text. The other key feature of QR Codes is that instead of requiring a chunky hand-held scanner to scan them, modern cell phones can scan them.
Your business, no matter how small or large, can use QR codes many ways. You might place one next to every product on your web site containing all the product details, the number to call and the URL link to the page so they can show their friends on their cell phone. You could add one to your business card containing your contact details so its easy for someone to add you to their contacts on their cell phone.
Add them to any print advertising, flyers, posters, invites, TV ads, etc., containing:
* Product details
* Contact details
* Offer details
* Event details
* Competition details
* A coupon
* Twitter, Facebook, MySpace IDs
* A link to your YouTube video
Most importantly, as more and more people do more and more product and information searching on their mobile phones, QR codes will put you in a position to give them the information they want about as quickly and easily as is possible. Make sure you are in front of this emerging trend, instead of trying to play catch-up months or years down the line.