What’s a QR Code?

Do you know what a QR code is? If you answered no, you’re not alone. QR codeshave becomeapopularadvertising tool so let’s run through the basics.

What is a QR code?
A Quick Response (QR) code isa type of barcode. Shaped like a square, the code contains a pattern of black square dots and stores information for users to access when they scan the code using a mobile device.

Here’s an example of a QR code for an NFL promotion on Pens.com.

How do I read a QR code?
If your smartphone doesn’t already have a QR code reader installed, there areseveral free QR code readers that you can download. Check out the options in your AppStore or choose fromthis list. Hover your reader over the code andyou’ll see its contents in a few seconds.

Where can I get a QR code?
A search for “QR Code Generators” onlineor on your phone will bring upa number of free sites that let you create QRcodes. You can choose to link your QR code to a url, text, phone number, SMSor a vCard. Once you enter your preferred link, you createa code which you can download, print or email. It takes less than a minute to create your QR code.

How can I use a QR code to promote my business?
QR codes area greatway to connect your customers with your company, whether it’s to read content on your web site, receive a promotion via text message or to call you without having to dial your number. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Includea QR code thatlinks to your email or phonenumberin your email signature.
  • Post a QR code that links to your company web siteon signs outside yourbusiness so customers can get information even when you’re not open. Restaurant owners, this is a great way to post your menu without having to re-print every time you make a change.
  • Add a QR code that links to acustomer survey on your invoices to get valuable feedback on how you’re doing.
  • Print codes for special offers or complimentary services on materials you give out at tradeshows.
  • Put a QR code that links to your onlinebio or LinkedIn profile on the back of your business card.
  • Of course, we can’t forget to mention printing the codes on your promotional products! National Pen can put a QR code on any of our full color products, but scanning a pen could be a little tricky! We recommendchoosing a flatproductlikethe Full Color Magnet, Spiral FlipPad or Sticky Notebook. Calendarsand planners are also good options.

The options for using QR codes are only limited by your creativity! So give it a try. If you have ideas to share about how you’reusing QR codes, we’d love to hear them.