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Articel 12QR is short for Quick Response.  QR codes are used to take a piece of information from a transitory media and put it in to a cell phone.  Marketers are working on unique ways to integrate QR codes into promotional campaigns.  Ekaterina Walter, from SmartBlog and author of “Think Like Zuck,”  identified some of the most unique QR codes in multiple categories:


Tesco’s Home Plus supermarket found a unique way to help hardworking Koreans with their grocery shopping. They placed lifelike billboards depicting supermarket shelves in the subway and shoppers could scan the QR codes with a phone application as they waited for their trains. Customers could check out online, and the goods would even be delivered to them at home, meaning no need to carry heavy bags.

JCPenny’s Santa Tags allowed customers to personalize holiday gifts with a QR code gift tag that contained a recorded message from the giver.

Department store Macy’s has started using QR codes on clothing signage that take customers to fashion tips from designers on how to wear the clothes.

Leisure and entertainment

The Cleveland Museum of Art placed QR codes next to exhibits to direct visitors to online or audio tours via their phones, or to provide more in-depth information.

Spotify’s modern day mixtape app allows you to send a greeting card with a custom QR code that lets you share a playlist with the recipient.

THQ’s Homefront video game used QR codes hidden though the game to unlock exclusive content and received more than 30,000 QR scans in the first two days.

Food and drink

Brancott Estate’s “World’s Most Curious Bottle” phone app uses your phone to scan the QR code on the winery’s bottles and give you a whole load of information, including food-pairing suggestions and promotions.

Indian restaurant Bombay Bowl has three QR codes in its entrance area that take visitors to mobile-friendly versions of their Facebook, Twitter and E-club for more information. Further QR codes on the tables lead to other “Smart Meal” restaurants nearby.

Mesob, an Ethiopian restaurant in New Jersey, has QR codes on each table that take customers to instructional videos about the production of the restaurant’s coffee and how they make traditional Injera bread.


Mountain Dew and Taco Bell partnered on a promotion in which customers scanned QR codes on drink cups to get free music downloads. The campaign earned the companies more than 200,000 downloads.

Verizon’s ScanLife Droid app promotion received more than 150,000 scans of its QR codes that linked from a whole variety of materials to its app download page.

Scandinavian Airlines launched its “Couple Up to Buckle Up” QR code promotion based on the idea that couples often book travel together. To get the couples’ discount code, the two side-by-side QR codes had to be scanned simultaneously on two smartphones.


New York’s Central Park “World Park” campaign wanted to reach out to a younger audience for Arbor Day, so they turned the park into an interactive board game using QR codes positioned around the park that linked to a wide range of information.

Heineken’s U-Code campaign enabled festival goers at the Heineken Open’er Music Festival to create their own QR codes to wear on clothing and help break the ice when meeting new people. The QR code took fellow attendees to the creator’s own unique message when scanned.


Frankfurt, Germany, recently introduced smart posters with QR codes in train carriages, which provided commuters with travel information, transport connections, special events and points of interest, as well as special offers for travel card holders.

Google’s Favorite Places campaign identified 100,000 businesses in the U.S. as “Favorite places on Google.” Those businesses received a window decal with a unique QR code, which passersby could scan to find information about that business, read reviews, star the business as their favorite and more.

Discussion Questions:

1. What are retailers doing with QR codes?

2. Do you use QR codes?


SOURCE: Ekaterina Walter, SmartBlog, January 3, 2013