Archive for the ‘Blog’ Category

Nope, QR Codes are Far From Dead

Wednesday, November 27th, 2013

Do not be swayed by press releases that announce that the QR code is dead or dying. Every piece of technology will have its share of critics and QR codes are not spared.

To prove our point, here are four different reasons why QR codes are not dying.

1. Apple is focusing on the technology for their various apps. With Apple Passbook on iOS 7, QR code readers are now pre-loaded on Apple’s devices. This is one of the reasons why people think that QR codes are losing steam: the fact that both Android and Apple have snubbed putting QR codes on their devices.

Google is also putting a pre-loaded QR code scanning application in Google Now.


So right now, more and more people are going to have a scanning application built right into their phones. No more excuses not scanning that QR code just because you do not have the application!

2. QR codes give disappointing user experiences. For a very long time, marketers have made the mistake of not planning the content that they put behind QR codes. Eventually, users are turned off by the fact that they scan a QR code and got nothing worthwhile for their effort.

The good news is that this is all changing. Now that more and more marketers are educated about QR code use, they are spending time planning their content more than ever.

3. QR codes are put up in places where there is no Wi-Fi or Internet connectivity. The good news is that Wi-Fi is becoming increasingly available in a lot of places, so much so that it is everywhere nowadays. Also, recent QR code scanners now allow you to save URLs that you scan, so that you can come back to them later when you are connected to the Internet.

4. Manufacturers are now considering replacing barcodes with QR codes. A lot of businesses are not comfortable with putting QR codes when they already have barcodes on their products. But the truth is that you can readily replace your traditional barcodes with a QR code as it can hold more information than an ordinary barcode.

QR Code Tips for the Holidays

Tuesday, November 26th, 2013

If you are a small business owner, you might want to get QR codes for your holiday marketing.

Even big retailers are using QR codes for their marketing. And why not, it is a convenient way to give added value to your customers.

So how are you going to use QR codes for the holidays? Here are some ways to use QR codes to spice up the holidas for you!

1. Let your customers come to your store with a strategically placed QR code! The best way to increase foot traffic to your store is to lure customers with exclusive discount offer. Put a QR code on your Christmas mailings, flyers and other marketing materials.

2. Let your customers win something for Christmas. You can get a QR code to make raffle draws even simpler. With BeQRious, you can create a QR code that can randomly give prizes to whoever scans it. You can give away a gift item, discounts on their next purchase, a rebate, or free gift wrapping. It is all up to you. Put every prize on a QR code and have your customers scan these. They will “win” one prize with their purchase.


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3. Make gift wrapping more personal. Allow your customers to record a video or an audio greeting and have them upload it to YouTube, or some other site. Then put the URL behind a QR code gift tag that you include with your gift wrapping services.

4. Create a mystery Santa promotion. Have customers register for a mystery Santa promotion and put their names behind a QR code. Each of the participants will buy a gift from your store and select a QR code and put it on their gifts. When the promo period ends, they come back to your store and scan the QR codes looking for their gifts. Not only will this help you spread the Christmas cheer, but it is a good way to let people return to your store.

What other ways can you use a QR code for your Christmas promotions? Tell us all about it in the comments section!

Should QR Codes Be Allowed in Cemeteries?

Thursday, November 21st, 2013

Death is a solemn event, and when people die, people usually show the family respect.

One of the gray areas is technology. Some families request friends and family who go to a funeral or wake for a loved one to keep their smartphones away. Some people even take selfies at a funeral, with the deceased in the background and post them on social media. Smiling even when somebody died. A lot of people find these tasteless but people keep on doing it anyway.

So what about QR codes on tombstone markers? A lot of cemeteries have allowed families putting up QR codes on loved ones’ gravestone markers. However, is it appropriate?

QR code help visitors get to know a deceased loved one. Scanning the QR code they find on a person’s tombstone could take them to an obituary posted online, the dead person’s blog or even his or her Facebook page.

One Washington state cemetery, however, is not buying it. Arlington National Cemetery is saying QR codes are not welcome there, and the policy was upheld by a recent advisory committee meeting.

The committee did not explain their decision.


Too bad, we think that Arlington would be a great place to have QR coded tombstones. It would provide people with a deeper sense of history, especially if they find a veteran’s grave with a QR code on it. They will be reading a piece of history told from the viewpoint of someone who actually lived it. These stories are very valuable. This would be worth more than a history lesson!

Instead of just their birth and death years and their name, you could read up about the wars they fought in!

What’s more, you have to take into consideration that a family might want to put up QR codes on their loved ones’ tombstones as this would help keep his or her memory alive and share how he or she lived life!

Library’s History Associate Wins History Award with QR Codes

Wednesday, November 20th, 2013

Kaitlin Barber is a Richwood, Kentucky native who works as a local history associate at the county library. Barber is responsible for linking Richwood’s historical attractions, markers and buildings to the Boone County Public Library’s online encyclopedia using QR codes.

The QR codes, when scanned, will take people to the corresponding pages of the encyclopedia where they could learn more about the places where they found the QR codes.

Completed in December 2012, Barber says that the project started out as a class project. Barber is enrolled at Northern Kentucky University under its history master’s program. Barber says that the QR codes aim to give people information about their city and their history, as well as to connect the community with their history and ancestors.

For her effort, Barber recently received the Kentucky History Award from the Kentucky Historical Society.

We know that this is not the first of QR coded towns. We have already reported on a lot of places that used QR codes to help visitors and residents learn more about the place. Some put up interesting insights, content and yes even history behind the QR codes.

But this one is different in a way. The Boone County Public Library already has the information in its encyclopedia. It was all a matter of making it accessible to the public. We seriously doubt that there would be a good number of the visitors and residents that would visit the library to get more information about the city.


Hence, the QR code helped put the valuable information out. A visitor at a historic building would see the QR code and can instantly access the county’s encyclopedia without leaving the site. Hopefully, from there, they would be encouraged to check out the other entries as well!

What we are saying is that if you are working on a similar effort, you might not need to spend a lot of effort coming up with content. You might be able to use some existing ones if you know where to look. Or you might work backwards, by first looking at what content is available and using these.

Turners Falls Now Uses QR Codes

Tuesday, November 19th, 2013

Robert Sakai worked with QR codes for his thesis. He made use of QR codes to help inform people about Turners Falls, its history and its present.

Sakai provided the seed for the town’s QR code efforts.

Now you could see the QR codes at some of the town’s buildings, providing information about the places, buildings and attractions where they are found.

One such QR code is found at the doorway of Nina’s Nook on Avenue A. Scanning that particular QR code would give you a video where you could see Nina Rossi, the owner, reading a poem.

Lisa Davol who is the interim director of Turners Falls River Culture says that these QR codes should be available at more locations in the future. They have worked hard to put up the content for these QR codes, which have been posted at some locations for quite some time now.

Davol also revealed that they plan to give residents and travelers printable QR codes. This way people can help spread the word about Turners Falls. For example, somebody going to college would be able to print out these QR codes and post them at their dorm miles away. A fellow student would scan the QR codes and access the information on that QR code, and hopefully would be encouraged to visit the town in the future.

So these QR codes not only serve as tour guides to visitors who are in town, but it would also serve as ambassadors of the town to attract more visitors.

The QR codes could help promote the town’s advertising, arts economy and events.


The project is dubbed as Turners Falls Encoded. There are six different QR codes that are now available:

  • Tracks of Turners
  • Starting in Turners
  • Treasures in Turners
  • Carts in Turners
  • Experiments in Turners
  • I Would…

We have seen QR codes used in towns and cities to promote tourism, but usually, these QR codes act as tour guides to visitors to that city. Turners Falls could probably be the first one use QR codes that are aimed at out of towners! This is a new idea that you could copy!

The VivoCity QR Code Experience

Thursday, November 14th, 2013

In Singapore, VivoCity used QR codes in their campaign to help them stand out during the Great Singapore Sale.

Vivocity is the island nation’s biggest lifestyle and retail store. For the Great Singapore Sale, they needed to compete with more than a hundred shopping malls in order to get noticed. So they planned to have an engaging marketing campaign that would stand out. They also wanted a campaign that would help expand the company’s reach in social media.

According to Sophie Chen on CampaignAsia, the company aimed to:

  • Increase the number of in-store visitors
  • Increase the number of likes to their Facebook page
  • Use QR codes to increase engagement with customers.

So what did the company do? They hired Dog Digital to help them create a campaign that would involve four big QR code mascots that were garbed using the company’s colors. These life-sized mascots walked the malls during the GSS and allowed shoppers to scan the QR codes.

People who scanned the QR codes got the chance to win discount coupons, as well as different prizes in the daily contests and draws. They also got entered into the grand draw, which gave out bigger prizes.

People were also invited to like the company’s Facebook page after they scanned the QR codes. People who did like the Facebook page also got double the chances to win in the grand draw if they shared information regarding that to their friends on Facebook.


So what happened?

More than 8,600 people scanned the QR codes! The scans resulted to getting more than 300 people to visit the store and collect their vouchers. On the other hand, close to 850 people entered the grand draw.

But what about their Facebook page? VivoCity Facebook page almost doubled its initial 6,039 likes to more than 10,400!

All that from a campaign that revolves all around QR codes! So be sure to plan your QR code campaigns carefully and thoroughly and you will succeed much like VivoCity!

QR Codes News Tidbits

Wednesday, November 13th, 2013

QR codes are now widely used for a lot of applications.

This is the reason why QR codes are no longer just a marketer’s best friend, but also of ordinary people. We have been reporting about how companies, schools, and individuals are using QR codes for different purposes. Here are two more:

Barkley Bridge Elementary School Uses QR Codes

In Hartselle, Alabama, the Barkley Bridge Elementary School is now very much a part of its outdoor classrooms.

There are eight different learning stations at the school and all of them have QR codes in them. These QR codes are protected by a waterproof cover. Students can expect these QR codes to provide more information once the school activates its wireless Internet connection.

The QR codes would give students more information about the topics featured in the school’s outdoor classrooms.

According to Joy Thomas, the coordinator for the outdoor classrooms, they are planning to make Wi-Fi available for the entire school. By then, the students will be provided with iPads or use their own mobile devices.


Royal British Legion Use NFC and QR Code to Urge People to Donate

The Poppy Appeal is getting some help from QR codes and NFC. Proxama PLC and PayThru have teamed up and put up collection tins and posters all throughout Birmingham. These tins and posters all have a near-field communication smart tag and QR codes on them.

People who wish to donate would just need to scan the QR codes or tap the NFC-enabled phones and tablets to the posters and tins. They will be taken to a secure page where they could donate.

The Poppy Appeal from the Royal British Legion wants to raise around GBP37 million for 2013. The money would be used to support the Armed Forces and their families, both for those in active service and those who are retired.

QR Codes Survive the Onslaught of Competitors

Tuesday, November 12th, 2013

After only a few years, QR codes have proven their worth. Not just to educators and marketers, but to people who are looking for ways to connect the offline world and the online world conveniently.

However, we will be the first to admit that it has not been smooth sailing. Not before, not now. There are still businesses that are using QR codes wrong. And these leads to consumer experiences that is enough to turn people off.

Using QR codes, done correctly, can help you attract new customers and wow your current customers. But because a lot of people are doing it wrong, what we see are epic fails being reported in mainstream media. This has lead people to think that QR codes are on their way out.

How many times have we seen headlines declaring that QR codes are dead?

But the simple truth is that QR codes are very much alive and very useful. One proof is that there has been a lot of competing technologies that have come out to challenge QR codes. For one there are similar tags and barcodes that work the same way as QR codes do. But these tags, even Microsoft Tag, cannot topple QR codes.

There is near-field communication. But NFC is still not as widely available on smartphones as its supporters would like it to be. In contrast, it is possible to scan QR codes using any smartphone as long as you have a QR code scanning app downloaded to your phone.


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And then there is image recognition, wherein an image is programmed to resolve to a URL of your choice, helping you bring content just by using your company logo or packaging artwork. And lastly, there is augmented reality where you could add certain elements to your immediate environment. For example, you could have an animation crop up on an AR code. Or read about a certain place just by taking a snap shot of the building.

All of these technologies have been sharing the space with QR codes, and hopefully, marketers can find a way to make these connected techs work together!

This Independent Developer Will Help You Pay with Your Phone

Friday, November 8th, 2013

Mobile payments is big and it is seen to be getting bigger in the next few years. This is the reason why corporate giants are racing to get a piece of the pie. And by corporate giants, we do mean the biggest ones in the world.

There’s ISIS, Google Wallet, Lemon, Square, as well as a host of other services backed by banks and telecommunication companies. Plus there are those that are still in the works, such as Flint and Clinkle, a project backed by Richard Branson of Virgin Group.

But there are also some smaller players in the industry that is worth noting. One of them is Minh Tran.

Minh Tran is behind CardSwapp Lite. The free app that is available on both Android and iOS.

CardSwapp Lite lets you pay with your Paypal accounts if the merchant or seller has the app installed on their smartphones as well. All you need is to scan a QR code and you are done.

It can also be used for paying your bills. If your biller has a QR code on the statement, you can just scan the QR code and enter the amount you want to pay and the bill is paid.


If you have an event, you can just put a QR code on your posters and people can buy tickets directly from it!

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What makes CardSwapp different is that it started out as an app that lets you share business cards. Then it was used for comparison shopping, letting you check prices at other retailers simply by scanning the barcode. The payments feature was only included in October 2013.

We have also reported that Paypal has been planning to come up with updates to its official app, letting people pay just by scanning a QR code or inputting a special code. But if you cannot wait, CardSwapp Lite might prove to be a good alternative.

Are Your Pets Ready for Some QR Code Bling?

Thursday, November 7th, 2013

Pet lovers would just love Posh Pet ID.

Posh Pet ID is actually collar tags that have QR codes on them. When scanned these QR codes take people to a hosted page where they could find information about the owners. So if Fifi gets lost, you can be contacted by whoever finds her!

Each collar comes with the QR codes and a charm. On the QR code plate, the words “Help me, I’m lost!” is printed and tells the finder to scan the QR code. You could also inscribe your pet’s name on the front of the plate.

The charms are optional. But it would be difficult to resist these charms because they are patterned after popular designs including bicycles, moustache, clover, golfer, skull and seashell. With 36 different designs, you could easily find a charm that matches the personality of your pet.


The collars itself is a work of art. You can have a selection of materials from leather, to faux python, to rhinestone-studded, to argyle and others. You could also choose your own colors!

These tags make it easy for you to prettify your pet and also keep them safe! But this is definitely not the first.

BeQRious has reported about dogIDs here.

Admittedly, however, dogIDs are much simpler than Posh Pet ID, but they do provide the QR code functionality in ScruffTag. The QR codes on the ScruffTag would take scanners to an online profile on, making it easy for finders to locate a lost pet’s owners.

There is also QR coded tracking technology for pet owners. If you are in the habit of hiring people to walk your dog, you could use the Pet Check service to track where they are. The technology uses QR codes and a mobile app. The walker would need to open the Pet Check mobile app and then scan the QR code when he or she comes to pick up your dog.


The scan will activate the phone’s GPS and you can track where they are by viewing an online map. This way, you could see where they went, how far they have walked and even where they stopped.

When the walk ends, the walker would need to scan your QR code again. This will send you an e-mail alert that your dog is now safely back at your home.