Seeing Custom QR Codes has become extremely common recently, but not many people know their name. I think I’ve heard them called “3D bar-code thingy” as much as anything. Regardless of what you call them, you see them on most advertisements nowadays and for a very good reason. A survey taken in May of this year showed that 35% of American adults have a smartphone. Those numbers are sure to increase, and custom QR codes will become more common.
The QR codes allow for someone with a smartphone to take a picture or “scan” the code. The most common use of the codes: to take the user to a specific webpage. I’ve become totally addicted to scanning bar-codes since Amazon instituted the scan search feature into their iPhone app earlier this year. Thursday night I was at a Barnes and Nobel looking at a book on electronics. In addition to flipping through the book to get a feel for it, I scanned the bar-code into the Amazon app on my iPhone which instantly pulled up the Amazon reviews on that book. I’ve also scanned items at Best Buy to compare prices with Amazon. The toughest part then is figuring out if you can wait a few days for the item to be shipped to you or if you need it now. 🙂 If you’re doing ANY type of print advertisement then you really want to make sure you have a custom QR code somewhere in your ad.
I’ll show a short YouTube video showing how to make your own custom QR code and then talk more about uses for the QR codes.
As we talked about in the movie, there are now a ton of uses for a custom QR code. Some of the options at the site shown in the video: Make Your Own Custom QR Code
Custom QR Code Uses
You can browse to a website.
You can bookmark a website.
You can make a phone call.
You can send a short message.
You can send an e-mail.
You can create a vCard (v2.1 or v3.0) with coordinates to add a contact to your device.
You can create a meCard to add a contact to your device.
You can create a vCalendar event to add to your calendar.
You can create Google Maps URLs.
You can create Bing Maps URLs.
You can create iTunes app and review URLs for iOS devices.
You can create special youtube:// URLs for YouTube app on iOS.
You can fetch and encode the latest tweet of a Twitter user.
You can overlay a Twitter profile image over the code.
You can create a mobile URL to tweet on Twitter.
You can initiate a chat to a particular Blackberry PIN on Blackberry Messenger.
That’s a lot of uses! I’ve used several other sites to make a custom QR code in the past, but I love this site’s options for destination as well as color customization. If there is a demand, I may do a future video on making a more advanced custom QR code. This site and video should be plenty to get you started. If you have any creative ways you use these codes, I’d love to hear them! Feel free to post them here.