QR Codes in Print Marketing

With the tight competition in the print media industry, how can you leverage QR Codes?  What are QR Codes anyway?

QR code stands for a “Quick Response” code.  They are 2D barcodes that contain any kind of information that can redirect scanners to online information. These codes are accessed using a smartphone device.

A QR Code is a two-dimensional type of barcode that Denso Wave developed, a Japanese barcode developer, in 1994.  These codes are generated using an online code generator. In the 1960’s the economy of Japan entered high economic growth. During this time, supermarkets and convenience stores thrived and were selling a wide range of commodities ranging from food to clothing.  To keep up with the demand for checkout counters, the use of cash registers was implemented.

Due to manual inputting at checkout and sales, cashiers on the checkout counters experienced numbness in their wrists and developed carpal tunnel syndrome.  As a solution to the problem, the Point of Sales (POS) system was developed, and the use of barcodes was incorporated.

Originally barcodes only held 20 alphanumeric characters and that was not enough to hold all of the item’s information.  Enter Denso Wave. They developed a new type of barcode that could hold all of the information and could be scanned in any scanner orientation.  Therefore, the rise of the QR code in 1994. 

They are generally used in advertising, business, health care, and education.  Aside from these sectors, the restaurant industry has begun to employ them as an interactive restaurant menu.

You will find QR codes on brochures, flyers, posters, billboards, items, products, business cards, and even online websites, and blogs, like this one.  You will even find them being used on TV.

There are two types of QR codes: static and dynamic. 

Static QR codes are free and permanent. This type of QR code is not modifiable and cannot be changed. It is usually used to link email addresses, URLs, texts, WIFI passwords, and social media links. Static codes have three features:

It is a one-time use code

It has limited data storage space

It is free to use

Dynamic QR codes are modifiable in content and can store more data even after you printed it onto the paper. They are more accessible to real-time scan monitoring, and locations of scans.

Dynamic QR codes have the following features but are not limited to these features:

Multifunctional, as it allows multi-URL directories

Editable and enables you to create/remove URLs even if your QR code has been printed or deployed

They are trackable so you can see the analytics

Has google analytics integration

Can have a password-protection feature

Will give you an email notifications of scans

Has the Google Tag manager feature

Integrates with other software like HubSpot.

API integration available

Businessmen and marketers are thinking of new and unconventional ways to reach prospects and customers. QR codes are one of the solutions you can use to gamify your business operations.

Business establishments that are using high-tech equipment in operating their business, have a higher chance of attracting more customers.  Technologies improve customer service schemes, the cost, and the time used in the order process.  

QR codes in print ads can be used in improving and enhancing your products and services.


  1. Service business

If you are in a service business such as freelance firms, salons, repair shops, schools, transportation, etc., QR codes can be useful in handing out your business cards, campaigns, resource materials, etc.

  1. Merchandising business

Business establishments such as grocery and convenience stores are slowly adopting new means of selling products and informing scheduled sale bonanzas. With the use of QR codes, a store owner will no longer need to purchase barcode scanners and use smartphones in scanning a product’s QR code.  In this way, stores save time in scanning QR codes as it works instantly due to a flexible scanning interface, unlike traditional barcode scanning.

  1. Manufacturing business

By adding QR codes to products, customers can scan the code and view the manufacturer’s website to gain more information on how the product is made and what other products the manufacturer is selling.

With the use of QR codes, payments can be made easier.  You can offer fund transfers without the use of credit cards.  Barcodes have been a part of the inventory system for years.  QR codes enable you to track and keep up on products sold or materials used. QR codes can be used in production, and information about the machines used such as production capacity, power status, and maintenance warnings are used. 

Have you considered using QR Codes in your print marketing or other applications?

Alexander Clark Printing is helping change business printing one ink spot at a time. 

Printed documents run business.  Words on a page communicate with your staff and customers. 

Alexander Clark can supply you with your promotional products, from pens to stress balls, from mugs to wrist bands.

When done right, direct mail marketing can work with your other channels, like digital marketing, to make your business stand out. 

 Printing on the envelope is your opportunity to add color, personality, and in some cases, life to your envelope. Which one you choose can depend on the kind of mailing you are doing, the size of your mailing and your budget.

 Alexander Clark Printing can manage your documents. Our technologies empower our clients, streamline processes, lower costs, improve service levels.