QR codes are fun. They look cool, and make it easy to put a ton of data in front of a user without having a hassle. It's just encoded data, and anyone can do it, but the tricky part comes down to measurement and access. Measurement has been solved a few ways, but the most common is to encode the data with a 3rd party provider and then have them tell you analytics on the usage. The problem is all your user experience is dependent on someone else (if you're the type of company controlling your own mobile website, this sucks).
The next part is access. Not all phones get pre-loaded with software that will scan a QR code, and the ones that do, most people don't know about it. Did you know that Blackberry's Messenger program (BBM) version 5 or greater can scan codes? It sure can.
They built it into BBM to make it super easy to add someone (or a group) to your BBM contact list so you can ping them---BUT, this will also redirect to a URL, etc if scanned (depending on the code.)
- Open BBM (if you have ver 5+)
- Use the menu key and select Scan Group Barcode
- This will give you an instruction screen (which you can cancel forever by clicking a box) and then it will activate the camera!
- Hover the camera over a code---no need to click--- and VOILA!
- DiBox pops up with "Do you want to go to X"
Now this could have been SO much better if RIM had simply made a shortcut on the main home screen for Scan Barcode jumping directly to Step 4 above, but they didn't. (Maybe the next Blackberry OS update will have it...) Oh well, you still don't have to futz around with BeeTagg or iNigma or any of those 3rd party programs.
If you have an iphone, god bless you, there are tons of free readers that do the same thing. Android? You probably already use cool stuff like this all the time right?
Want to make your own code? Use Google's API by changing the URL at the end of this QR Code Maker link... Want to make a code you can re-direct later? Check this out: 4QR
Need help with a mobile marketing program and want to use QR codes or something else super cool? Get in touch with Mike Brown at MyThum Interactive