Most of you probably know what a QR code is. For those of you who do not, it looks like the image on the left (and you have probably seen them everywhere lately). More and more we are beginning to see these odd-looking things on advertisements, business cards, brochures and other direct mail pieces.

So what exactly is a QR code?

QR codes are 2-D barcodes that can be scanned by your smart phone's camera using a downloaded app. Once the code is scanned, a Web page, contact information or another form of info will open up on your device. Real estate agents like place these on posters in front of homes for sale. People can drive up to the sign, scan the QR code, and then receive more information on the home.

How can I use QR codes in my marketing?

Once you determine the type of information you most want people to have quick access to, you can begin to build your QR code campaign. There are several free QR code generators available to use. Click here for an example. If you need help with your campaign, contact us here.  Here are some creative ways to incorporate QR codes into your marketing:

1. Use QR Codes for more Social Media follows!  Create a mobile-friendly Web page with a link to your Facebook or Twitter pages. Set the page up so that people have to click "Like" or "Follow" to have access to the page. You can place this social code on the back of business cards, brochures or pretty much anywhere!

2. Place QR codes on your business cards.  Business cards are small and sometimes easy to lose. Save a prospect time by placing a QR code on the back of your business card. When the client or prospect scans the code, they can download your contact information as a vCard. Now they will have your contact information stored in their smart phones regardless of whether they lose your card.

3. Use QR codes for special promotions! Think of a special promotional offer your company can provide to its clients or prospects. Now integrate that idea into a QR code that links the promotional offer to a landing page with more details. You can put the promotional code on signs, T-shirts, cards, handouts, and other places!

4. Get more email sign ups.  Create a landing page that leads people directly to your newsletter or email marketing sign up. Include reasons why the person should sign up for your marketing on the landing page to ensure the best results.

5. Place QR codes on labels or table tents. Whether you own a restaurant or have a booth at a convention, QR codes make a great edition to any display. You can print them out as sticky labels to be placed on menus, wine bottles, receipts and more. Additionally, you can put them on table tents or poster boards so that passersby can scan them at their leisure. Again, be sure to give people a compelling reason to scan your code first!