If you have even glanced at an advertisement in the last year, flipped through a magazine or walked by your favorite store, then chances are you have seen a QR Code. Maybe you assumed the little square was a misprint, but in fact, it is a window into the interactive advertising movement.
QR (quick response) Codes are a 2D matrix bar that is able to store alphanumeric or numeric characteristics. This is where smart phones come in handy, as there are apps capable of reading these codes, sending you directly to a URL (or other data), to find additional information, promotions, sales, advertisements, and more. (Source: Mashable.com)
So, where are these QR Codes? In short, everywhere. You can find them in print advertisements, fine art exhibits, store fronts, even wrapping paper. Chances are, your favorite brands are using them as well, everyone from McDonald’s and Pepsi, to Ford and Starbucks (who is starting to use QR Codes for payment). A 1200% increase in scanning from July to December of 2010 would suggest that these codes aren’t going anywhere anytime soon. If you have a smart phone, pull it out and download a QR Code reader (there are free ones) to check out this interactive graphic, courtesy of JumpScan and Mashable to see just how much QR Codes have grown in the past year, and how it could in turn, be a new interactive way to reach your audience as well.