Special QR Code Report
Why QR Codes?
The Hidden Value
How To Use a QR Code Effectively
The following report will answer the question ” what is a QR Code ” in easy to understand comparisons.
After you read this report you will:
- Discover the hidden value behind the 2D barcode phenomena that is sweeping the US
- Most likely be shock at the numbers and blistering trends
- Understand how to use QR Codes effectively
- See how easy it is to measure the results they provide
- Realize the competitive advantages that will soon be yours for the taking
- Be able to think up of any ideal use and it will be brought to life for you!
- Why having a Mobile site presence is necessary
In plain English, you will soon understand why you want to utilize QR Codes in your print, media, business, marketing, display and or advertising campaigns. A competitive edge will soon be yours for the taking.
What is a QR Code?
For example, those single line bar codes you see on can goods, boxed goods or products that the check out clerk scans totally your groceries and in-store purchases are UPC codes. They are single line one-dimensional codes that revolutionized the world of check-out and check-in automation.
Surprisingly, a guy named Wallace Flint experimented with the use of automated checkout and inventory control back in 1932. One may conclude Wallace was by far ahead of his time back then.
However, it wasn’t until 1974 when Marsh’s supermarket in Troy Ohio scanned the first check out an item using a UPC code. It was 8:01 am and the scan registered a 10 pack of Wrigley’s Juicy Fruit gum. (Remember that if your ever on the show Jeopardy). The revolution in automation and inventory control was on.
UPC codes began speeding up check-out times and eliminating pricing errors. After all, those gifted clerks use to hand enter all your purchases without ever looking at the register keys.
Today QR Codes provide many similarities to UPC codes. Instead of the clerks dazzling those back in the 70’s with the wonderment of how they were able to enter the price into a register without looking at the keys, we are now the clerks.
We no longer will be required to type in gobs and gobs of text into our smartphones and mobile devices. We simply aim our QR Code reader at the QR Code and Walla abracadabra lickety split we are where the code has our land in a blink of an eye. ( More on this later ).
If you recall, the UPC code has evolved and morphed into many uses today. From automatic inventory re-order control systems, instant pricing changes, postal tracking, driver licenses to check-ins at concert venues, stadiums, trade show events, movies, and arenas. The evolution of scan-able codes continues.
Today we see a new level of what I like to call the 2D UPC code but really it’s not. A QR Code is a 2D barcode known as a Quick Response code. It may act like a UPC code in many ways but its purpose does not control inventory, register price nor check you into a game or event. Its purpose is to respond quickly and to take you to the online destination or app with a simple point of a QR code reader from a smartphone. Thus eliminating the need to punch keys. Sound familiar?
A QR Code is an answer to speeding up your online experience. Just like the long lines at the grocery store of the 70’s the QR Code looks to get you to an online destination quicker and a whole lot faster.
The main difference is QR Codes will warp drive you to an online virtual destination. The best news is, we are still in the infancy stage of development.
The first QR Code was put in use back in 1994 to scan components at a higher speed. It was created by a company called Denso which is a subsidiary of Toyota.
Over time use caught on and just like the UPC code, QR Codes took on a life of their own. Not long ago, simple uses include taking one to an online landing page or video but with evolution, the landscape is changing fast. Today, mobile marketing companies, mobile web developers and app builders and making the codes fun and exciting to use in ways that will definitively continue be in play for years to follow.
The evolution of QR Codes will take us to places, apps and uses we seldom thought possible. Buckle up.
Why Use QR Codes?
Before we venture into the “off the charts” numbers, we want to ask the question “ Why use QR Codes?
One reason is simple, most humans are lazy. ( Oops, who just said that )? But studies show this fact is true. The point being, why would you want to meticulously type in line after line of text into a browser window, search or address book? When you may simply aim your QR Code reader ( Downloadable app ) at the QR Code and within seconds be at your destination or the where the QR Code takes you. Keep in mind these are for use on Mobile devices such as Androids and iPhones, etc.
Our personal view is “ QR Codes are to the virtual online world as the television remote control is to TV “. Think about it, imagine getting off the couch every time you want to change a channel. Are you starting to see an important trend here?
Another reason is, humans are by nature, curious beings! Imagine a QR Code on an ad print display on a subway train, tram or even on a vehicle wrap. What do you think the user with a smartphone, notepad or Android device is going to do? They are going to point, scan and check out where the QR Code leads them.
Now imagine printed QR Codes on storefront window posters, out-of-home advertising and yes commercial printing like business cards, postcards, and company brochures! Imagine QR Codes on t-shirts, promotional items, trade show displays, huge building wall scapes, and billboards?
This type of advertising works, it peaks the curiosity button that is hard-wired into our human psyche’. The user simply gets there fast without any typing. HOWEVER your landing page, app, survey, coupon, site or another great idea which is designed for use on a mobile device, therefore, you want to ensure your site or app is Mobile friendly! More on this later.
Another reason, before we get to the numbers, is QR Codes offer exact measurement of responses for the advertisers. QR Code tracking is a huge benefit for business use. Remember the UPC code alerting the retail or grocery store that their inventory stock is low? QR Code tracking provides the answer to the who, what, when and where equation of the QR Code scan. Raw data that helps advertisers reach their intended target markets, enlist subscribers or gain valuable feedback to name a few.
What is the value of QR Code tracking? In theory look at what the Neilsen ratings did for advertisers targeting network television campaigns before and after cable came along. Many wise advertisers understand a key to all successful advertising in the new digital frontier boils down to measuring and testing.
For example, imagine your running a print or media campaign using QR Codes. Imagine you’re adding QR Codes to vehicle wraps, transit advertising, trade show displays, printed collateral, storefront window posters, event backdrops or on online ads.
You will know which media produced the most hits, the location of the hits including the demographic information of the hits all of which will allow you to maximize your ad spending with QR Code printed media and display.
Where do I get a QR Code and a QR Code reader?
Believe it or not, QR Code generation is FREE! Yes free. You may do a search for ‘QR Code generators’ from your smartphone under apps and a host of viable QR Code generating sites will appear. When you find a site you simply enter your website URL, for example, and your QR Code will appear in milliseconds for your use and download.
If you have a smartphone, go to apps and search for ‘QR Code readers’, many are free and download in seconds. We recommend using i-enigma ( super fast ) or check out all the other trusted sources to get your downloadable QR Code reader app today. We believe within the next year most smartphone will come with QR Code readers already built in. For now, the process to get yours is fast and easy. Just search, locate and download.
NOTE: It’s always best to read the REVIEWS and FEATURES. You may want a simple QR Code reader or one with lots of cool features.
What do the QR Code numbers look like?
OK, Buckle up, you have an idea of what QR Codes are now let’s look at the numbers!
According to ComScore over 14 million QR Codes were scanned in the United States alone in the month of June of 2011
Now think about this.
That equals a little over 6% of all mobile phone users. Given the response, we tend to hear a lot “What’s a QR Code” goes to show those companies, corporations, businesses, and people who are utilizing QR Codes are getting a lions share of this market.
We like to call this a major competitive advantage.
Besides over 14,000,000 QR Scans in the USA alone in the month of June, the following statistics will have you running to deploy your QR code print ad and Mobile Marketing campaign by tomorrow.
The demographics of the users were:
- Approximately 60% were Male
Looking to reach this market demographic with your advertising campaign?
- About 54% of the scans hit the 18-34 audience!
Now if you’re an advertiser, think about this age demographic for a second. It is proven this age group has disposable income and besides tweens is an impressionable audience.
- Over 36% have an average household income exceeding$100k!
What a shocker. Even we didn’t expect this raw data to produce such a high income demographic for QR Code usage. Are the trends and numbers starting to make sense?
According to 3G vision news:
- QR Code usage increase 80% in the second Quarter of 2011 over Q1
This doesn’t take rocket science here to see we are on the path of evolution! We are in a QR Code solutions market that’s exploding. A place that makes sense for all businesses and advertisers to begin using QR Code marketing in print, media, and display.
- Quarter 2, the United States led the way in users
Goes to show, QR Codes are starting to take off in the United States many years after they were in use overseas for years.
- The United States is ranked 3rd in overgrowth of use at 80.2%
The US is growing in usage at a quarterly clip of 80.2% and this is ranked third?
- In as little as one year global growth in QR Code usage has jumped 10 fold!
Do you see how these numbers have potential to benefit your business, service or person if you were to employ the use of QR Codes in your print, outdoor media, and display marketing?
- 60% of Online ” Search ” is migrating to Mobile
This means static non-mobile based websites, designed online presence will be rendered ineffective in the near future. Your company will want to have a specially designed mobile landing page/website to accommodate the ever expanding mobile user base. Currently, 3 in 5 local searches on a mobile phone result in purchases ( Smart Briefs article ). Most company websites do not have a mobile platform site to capitalize on QR Code use let alone command traffic based upon future search trends. It’s OK, a great affordable solution will be offered near the end of this Special Report.
True, we may have chosen to dig in and presented you with the complete history of the Quick Response code since 1994 to its current evolution over time but we believe by providing this report you now understand:
- What a QR Code is
- See their hidden value
- Why they make sense to include in print and advertising
- Why a mobile presence is a must if you want to survive
What uses exist for QR Codes?
The first uses were simple ones.
They would direct a user to a website or landing page.
Today the uses continue to grow exponentially through innovation and applications ( apps ).
As you see from this screen shot of a Mobile website landing page, the applications are as simple as touch and go. A Qr code may link directly to a mobile landing page where you may book an appointment, buy online, find directions and just about anything you may imagine.
With today’s technology, you may point the QR code reader at a QR code on a concert poster, a Las Vegas strip show or a hotel ad and easily be a few clicks away from buying your tickets online to book a room. QR codes provide the ease of use to get the users where you want them to go in an instant rather than having to type in long lines of text.
You may even run specials on mall posters or directly on your menu and deliver the user instant coupons or easy to order solutions with one touch applications.
Some uses include static and dynamic direct QR Code landing on:
- A website
- Mobile website
- Movie trailer and buy tickets
- View and book hotel rooms
- Rent cars
- Order food
- Take surveys
- Opt-in forms
- Online stores
- Interactive user guides
- Consumer goods information
- Specific landing page
- Introduction video
- Product information content
- Artwork painting information
- Photo information
- Explaining significance of a historical site of document
- Contact information to address book apps
- Downloadable coupons
- Daily specials
- Real Estate signage for video walk through and set appointments
- Trade show speaker bios and rebroadcast links
- Back of Trucks vehicles for information
- Social media pages/likes
- Blogs and RSS feeds
- Your only limited to the creative mind
As you see the list of users and apps is growing by leaps and bounds. One of our favorite QR Code apps is ” imagine you’re a Realtor”. ( See Hidden value example one below ).
Hidden Value behind QR Code example:
The Realtor QR Code app. Imagine your a Realtor.
Imagine getting a call to show a home or commercial space. Imagine how time-consuming this task is.
Now imagine if you place a QR Code on the specific properties sign! A user scans the code, gets a virtual tour, may leave an offer, request a walk through, fill out an application and provide contact info.
Your day just became 5 times more efficient not to mention your bottom line is going to be more profitable because you’re dealing with per-qualified active buyers/lessees.
When the Realtor receives a request via a QR Code he or she knows the buyer is active and interested and most importantly may be per-qualified.
NOTE: We do not share this with many people because this is a competitive advantage we offer to our clients. You’re receiving this because you signed up for this free report.
Everything is possible with QR Codes. All it takes is an idea and some smart programmers, mobile web developers, videographers, ( or you using your all in one video camera ), graphic designers and other creative people working to create the magic for you.
What’s the downside to QR Code marketing?
The only downside we see is an improper presentation, mistakes in printing and issues with re-sizing.
Mistakes occur when a QR Code solution provider or 2 level bar code printer does NOT perform a test print first. Test prints will ensure the barcode works on different QR Code readers and functioning properly.
Other mistakes happen when the matrix code is improperly incorporated into an ad, display, poster or other media designs. Avoid this by allowing the code to breathe. Remember great designs start with white space.
A typical example of issues:
Let assume you want to run outdoor advertising of your Fall Fashion line on the side of buildings or on a billboard around given markets. You want to insert a QR Code that leads to a video clip of the runway models showing off the new line with your logo watermark gently visible on the video with a link to learn more or place your vote.
Now let’s assume the QR code is generated to land on this dynamic video which includes subtle music, voice-overs, and interactive buttons. When this QR Code is blown up 100 to 200 times normal resolution the original file becomes distorted thus causing your giant QR Code ( relative to your design ) not to function.
Ever clicked on a broken link? Landed on a URL 404 error? Imagine what a glitch like this would do for your campaign if the barcode failed to deliver.
Therefore, knowing how to properly re-size QR Codes for print on all types of out-of-home, in-store POP, trade show display and commercial printing will be vital to your marketing campaigns success.
The design experts at www.bigprintinglasvegas.com understand how to re-size barcodes properly, as do other printers with QR Code printing experience.
If you’re using QR Codes on your commercial print collateral you want to avoid glossy finishes. Use a matte finish. It will allow for a super fast scan.
Imagine your gloss finish printed collateral is being displayed in a brightly lit interior or sunny outdoor area. Imagine you nail your design and have provided a good call to action. You have the users curiosity at a peak and they are eager to scan your code. The glossy finish begins to reflect the bright lights and glare. This unneeded noise is causing the user to become frustrated. They move on.
Marketers and Advertisers understand there is a golden window of 3 seconds or less to engage an audience. When the glossy glare of the print causes the QR Code reader to fail the scan in under 3 seconds the user moves on. You just lost a valuable view, landing and potential customer.
However, it is noted that commercial print collateral is portable whereas outdoor display advertising tends to be static. You will have still have an opportunity for the user to scan your code when they review your commercial print collateral at a later time. Once again, this is why measuring response and tracking results is a key resource to utilize when QR Code marketing is in play.
At BigPrintingLasVegas.com, we enjoy offering the added service of providing QR Codes on Vehicle, Truck, Bus, and Transit Wrap printing.
The key here is to design the wrap so the QR Code doesn’t wrap around curves or other vehicular obstacles. Good wrap designers ( one of the hardest designs to pull off ) find the flat areas of the vehicle and design the wrap from this perspective.
Add one to the rear of the truck tailgate or on the side panels of a van. Use your imagination. You will catch scans in traffic, at a light or while parked in busy areas. When you add QR Codes to the side of the vehicles make sure they are up high enough to clear traffic if possible.
You may even be bold and place them on the roofs of buses or trucks when in cities with high rises and large hotels like Las Vegas.
The key here is to utilize a matte over lam or better yet, wrap the vehicle with gloss but cut in a matte lam to cover the QR Code area.
Size doesn’t need to be a factor here, keeping the design of the code in proportion utilizing Vector Art files allows the 2d barcode to stand out when increased to special or magnificent sizes. Remembering to include proper visibility placement ensures the Qr Code will get scanned by the curious mind when in traffic, parked, displayed or at a job site time and time again.
Imagine if you’re a plumber, the code could be designed as a short intro and book an appointment? Like we shared, your imagination is our only limit.
The last and most important downside is:
Most QR Code use in advertising do not have a Mobile Friendly version of their website and or landing page that will maximize the response rates. Mobile websites are worth their weight in gold as the shift to a mobile device societies on the go seek instant fulfillment of both QR Code scans and search.
Having a mobile friendly version of your web presence will offer you a massive advantage over your competition. This will be a must in the coming years. Big Printing Solutions recommends you contact hi5mobilemarketing. Ask for Kevin and get a mobile presence/application as soon as possible so you don’t get left behind.
Think about it like this, a mobile friendly version of your online presence allows users to quickly access the information you present, respond fast and engage your business with orders, rentals, and services almost instantly.
How do I get the most out of using QR Codes?
We already know that human curiosity will draw attention to your code. We know that the growth of QR Code use is exploding so in order to maximize your use of QR Codes does the following:
- Gently incorporate a QR Code into your designed advertising
- Allow it to breathe, remember the old white space rule
- Make sure it stands out and doesn’t get lost in the ad clutter
- Use Shoot me. See where I go and other calls to action
- Use color but do not over do it ( yes colorful codes read )
- Use matte finish whenever possible
- Be creative, what you think up is possible with app designers
- Include measurement and tracking functions
Best of all have fun, create buzz and stand out in the crowd today.
QR Codes are not limited to advertising alone
We believe social media members will be sporting QR Codes on t-shirts leading them to their social page ( with the privacy of course ), like buttons and yes we believe its only a matter of time until we see people sporting interesting QR Code tattoos.
QR Code use is only limited by your imagination.
What do you want your QR Code to do? Tell us at Big Printing Las Vegas today at (702) 900-2334 or visit our QR Code mobile app provider Hi5mobilemedia ( hint, shoot the QR code at the beginning of this special report ) and we will make you happen before the competition even knows what happened.
Remember, if you’re looking for an expert QR Code barcode printer? Then go to back to http://www.bigprintinglasvegas.com today and request a quote or call our experts.
We want to make the impossible possible with you.
If you like what we do, then we will appreciate a + 1, share and likes from you. You’re always free to comment on our blog or link your blog to ours. We enjoy creativity on another level!
Thanks for reading this report!
May you see the hidden value QR barcodes provide as a marketing tool or for personal fun.
Look for more special reports and information of interest in our newsletter.
And by the way, don’t worry, we are just like you. We do not like clutter in our email in-boxes either. Big Printing Las Vegas will only send out newsletters and reports when the time is right to get you information that will provide added benefits to your organization or self.
By Jay Castellano
Big Printing Las Vegas