Have you seen these funky looking scan codes on packages or doors to a few more hip retailers in town? It’s a QR scan code that, scanned with a smart phone using one of several apps available, will automatically connect your customer to any website or other digital file you would like to provide. The one to the right or the one below will both connect you to the main page of this blog…but I could also use either to provide a link to a presentation, my contact information, an email, my Twitter feed…whatever you would like! Think about the potential applications for this technology…particularly with the ever increasing ubiquity of smart phones. Here’s how to use it.
First. Download a QR scanner for your smart phone and give it a try. iPhone users can try Bakodo or iCandy Mobile for free. Others include QuickMark ($1) and Optiscan ($2). For Android, Barcode Scanner is an option.
Next. Visit one of the QR code generator sites on the web to see what is possible and try out your new toy. I like QRstuff.com. They offer a very customizable QR code generator (with your own colors and 11 different types of digital media links, as well as a print option to create stickers or cards with your QR code and other product ideas. Other QR code generators include Kaywa and iCandy. There are plenty of others. If you find one you like better, please let us know in the comment section below.
Again, Microsoft has its own tag generator for which they say over 1 billion tags have been generated in the past four months. My advice is to include both until a standard is determined. Generate Microsoft Tags at http://tag.microsoft.com/.
Finally… get CREATIVE! Think of the ways you would like to connect with your current or potential customers. What kind of information would they find useful if it were easily accessible?
- Print QR codes on stickers with links to your website, Twitter feed, or Facebook page.
- Develop a book of QR codes that link to additional information or great reviews about your products.
- Encourage people to “Check In” and write a review on Yelp! with an easy link to your page.
- Print QR codes on your business card for a truly interactive experience.
- Attach a “Buy it Now” link that would allow a customer to scan and enter their purchase information right from their smart phone.
- Provide a link to your mobile app or website and encourage your user to bookmark it while they’re there.
- Build your own custom landing pages targeted directly at a particular audience or for a specific product.
- In short…get creative!