Featured: How mobiles are giving print media a new lease of life

qr-codeThe marketing industry has long been predicting the death of print media, with social networking sites and live news updates online fast replacing the newspapers, magazines and advertorials that many of us are used to. It seemed like there was no hope for the ailing giant – until the turn of century, when mobile phone developers discovered they could implement pre-existing QR code technology into smartphones. Now you can find them everywhere – posters can be scanned and take the user straight to a website or product page; contact details can be transferred instantly to a mobile’s address book; commuters in South Korea can even do their shopping by scanning product codes on the walls of Seoul City’s underground system.  

How can QR codes benefit your business?

Realistically, print media will always be necessary to some degree, particularly for small businesses whose demographic may not all be entirely tech-savvy. Before QR codes, marketers would use URLs in their adverts, with limited success – while businesses did see a minor increase in online traffic, too many people were at risk of forgetting the URL before they got to a browser. These days, even self-declared technophobes own a smartphone of some kind, and so even those customers and clients who would usually just hold on to a flyer are now more likely to scan their way to a company’s homepage.

Equally, self-employed business owners and entrepreneurs can now use QR codes to establish themselves quickly as a useful connection. Rather than adding one more card to the collection usually acquired at networking events, your new contact can now simply scan your business card using their phone, and instantly add your details to their address book – even with a note describing who you are and a link to your website, if you choose.

Updating your print media

Making your printed marketing smartphone-friendly is a fairly simple process; here we’ve lined out where you need to go to get yourself set up.

Step 1: Create a QR code. There are QR-makers across the internet that can produce barcodes for different functions, but for one that just links to a URL, check out Kaywa for free, instant generation.

Step 2: Test your new QR code. Android owners can do this with the Barcode Scanner app, available for free on Google Play. Just hold the scanner over the image and watch it load up your browser and send you to your website!

Step 3: Create your new marketing materials. You can leave this relatively similar if you already have an established brand aesthetic, or you can start from scratch and simply edit one of the professional designs or sale at TemplateCloud.com, owned by printing company Flyerzone.

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