According to Wikipedia, a QR code is a “matrix barcode (or two-dimensional code), readable by QR scanners, mobile phones with a camera, and smartphones. The code consists of black modules arranged in a square pattern on white background.”  They were created by a company called Denso-Wave. The “QR” stands for “quick response,” and their goal was to create a high-speed way for information to be decoded, or as Denso-Wave says, “Code read easily for the reader.”

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WHY QR CODES FOR BUSINESS:

QR Codes have been used for multiple purposes, from tracking manufacturing parts to representing entire books. Because of the incredible growth of smartphone app usage and the quickly growing number of smartphone users, QR codes have and will continue to become a way for marketers to reach their audiences through extending the internet to objects and locations in the real world. One mobile scanning company saw a 700 percent increase in 2010 in mobile scanning usage. These codes can be trackable, so you can manage response rates with a higher degree of precision. They can also open the end user up to much more information (i.e. mobile videos, virtual tours, websites, giveaways), replace expensive print material, or be a new way to use print marketing altogether.

Places where QR codes have been deployed up to this point include: billboard adsgiveaways, in-store displays, foodevents and ticketingstadium displaysbusiness cards, contests, direct mail campaigns, websites, email marketingcoupons, and tons of other crazy stuff.

HOW TO GET STARTED USING QR CODES FOR BUSINESS:

Here are some ways to get started with scanning and creating different QR Codes.

Android Platform: BarCode Scanner; QuickMark for Android (Both FREE); Google Goggles works for QR codes as well (FREE)

iPhone: QuickMark is my favorite iPhone app for reading QR codes ($.99);  NeoReader(Free); QR Reader (Free); Google Goggles work for scanning as well.

Blackberry: ScanLife Barcode Reader (Free); QR Code Scanner Pro (vibrates when code connects AND Free); NeoReader (Free)

Here are some QR Code Generators:

ScanLife: I like this one because it allows you to track and create multiple different types of codes, as well as change the info that you already have on a code.

Kaywa: Like above you can choose to embed a URL, text content, or contact information.

Goo.gl: This is Google’s trackable link shortening tool that creates a QR code for each link you make. Limited only to website links.

What thoughts do you have on using QR codes in business? Comment below!

Magneti aims to be the most effective and innovative growth marketing team in the world.