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QR codes, a step-by-step guide

QR code technology was created in 1994 by Japanese corporation Denso-Wave, initially QR codes were developed to track parts in vehicle manufacturing, though we have seen a resurgence in recent years in the realm of advertising.

I always thought Wiki code, would have made a better ‘less techy’ name for the common QR code, either way if you would like to know how to make them, follow the guide below and you’ll be creating them in no time.

According to statistics, the most popular operating system used to scan QR codes in Australia is a bit of a tight rope between Apple iOS and Android. The Apple iOS (iPhone) being the most popular, followed closely by the Android 4.0 (Linux system).

As the popularity of QR codes in marketing grows in Australia, as will the reliance of using this medium as a quick and easy way to move dynamic content and material.

Why use QR codes?
We talk a lot about the social media revolution, think of QR codes like the content revolution, it’s a crisp and creative way to extend your customer’s experience with your brand and more importantly it’s a way to do the same thing with someone who is NOT your customer…yet!

Hint: if you’re looking for a career in marketing or communications and you want to show innovation, why not creatively incorporate a QR code in your application/resume, it’ll be a sure winner.

Tell the story
You can’t always be around to elaborate on your material, so use something that most people have on them all the time…a smartphone.

You can use QR codes on any number of signage, brochures, packaging, etc. just be sure not to use them ‘just because’. With no value add or by giving nothing to a fellow QR code scanner, you take away a possible experience, so always ask you self, ‘Why should I include a QR Code?’.

The end is near, for ‘paper forms’
Even in today's world with all the gimmicks, why do people ask you to sign up on paper? Make life easier for both you and the person signing up and instead, have them scan the QR code, which takes them to a form and a special offer; easy right?

Breathe life into print
Whether you’re building a website, a brochure or simply a one paged publication, it’s all about the user experience. What if you want to deliver more images, video or something more compelling? A QR Code part of the copy may just be the easiest and cheapest way to do this.

Here’s the point: the best reason for using QR codes is to extend the content experience and engagement with your brand. Learn to leverage this for your business and you’re well on your way to building some real digital marketing.

Step-by-step guide to create QR codes that you can track
1. Go to the website http://www.snap.vu/ and sign up to an account

2. Click on the tab named "New web snapcode".
3. In the textbox marked "Web Address (required)" enter the URL that the QR code needs to link to.
4. In the textbox marked "Your Reference" enter a link reference name.
5. Click on "Create snapcode".

6. Then right click on the URL link for the newly created snapcode, and select "Copy shortcut".

[[START FROM STEP 7 (below) IF YOU DO NOT WISH TO TRACK THE QR CODE]]

7. Now go to the website http://www.qrstuff.com/
8. Select the [1] Data Type i.e. website URL.

9. On the [2] Content Section, right click on the "Website URL" textbox and paste the copied link.
10. Select QR Code [3] Foreground Colour and select the [4] Output Type.

QR code size:
Though you can get away with having quite small QR codes, the recommended size for a QR code is a minimum dimension size: 32 × 32 mm (1.25 × 1.25 inches)

NOTE: Make sure you test the QR code to check if it goes to the right link.

THE MORAL:
URLs are old school, and QR codes are new age. With mobile technology advancing all the time, people have a thirst to consume information faster than ever before. QR codes may just assist you in delivering just that. And remember, be sure they add value!

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For the record:
QR Codes are useful but are NOT the next biggest thing. 
My reaction when a client insists they are:
Hosted by imgur.com
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