QR Codes Are Back Up to Bat

When they were first introduced, consumers did not know what QR codes were about, how to use them, or their benefit — “Strike three, and you’re out!”

By 2019, marketing analysts examined QR code failures and proclaimed them a fad that would fade into marketing history. This dismal outlook for QR technology arrived even though newer smartphones built scanning functionality into their cameras. Nobody had to download unique apps anymore. Then came the pandemic, and we suddenly saw QR codes everywhere in the new, no-contact environment. We used them to order food, pick up a curbside package, and many other applications. Not much good came from COVID, but for the marketing world, the QR renaissance revitalized interest in those funny square symbols.

QR codes are more relevant and ubiquitous than ever. Printers should be familiar with the technology and understand how to promote it to their customers. Today we will look at the difference between static, dynamic, and variable QR codes and suggest ways printing companies can use them to increase revenue and retain customers.

Static QR Codes

A static QR Code is a QR Code that, once generated, cannot be overwritten. It stores uneditable information. Static QR Codes are for data that does not need updating or for a one-off campaign. Printing companies can integrate fixed QR codes into business cards, brochures, flyers, and catalogs. They are linked to specific landing pages, promotional offers, or contact information. Promotional QR codes allow customers to access more information or exclusive deals. Incorporating QR codes into product packaging or labels can lead customers to product-related content, such as user manuals, assembly instructions, or videos.

The drawback to static QR codes is that they cannot be tracked and analyzed like dynamic QR codes. Marketers must generate a new code if the information encoded into the QR code requires modification.

 Dynamic QR Codes

Dynamic QR codes send users to specific information or web pages like static QR codes. What makes them “dynamic” is that the URL encoded in them redirects the visitor to a second URL that can be changed on demand. Dynamic QR codes are preferred over the static version because they offer scan tracking and online retargeting on Google and Facebook. Printing companies can create dynamic QR codes that link to online content and track visits. Active codes empower marketers to make real-time updates to the related information, ensuring current data such as pricing, availability, or schedules.

 Dynamic QR codes enable printing companies to track the effectiveness of marketing campaigns. QR code scans provide valuable data, such as the number of scans, user demographics, and geographic information. This data can help tailor future campaigns and improve customer targeting.

 Variable QR Codes

Variable QR printing is a subset of Variable Data Printing (VDP). Just as a brochure can be custom printed for each recipient based on a series of codes or data points associated with that recipient, a QR code can be custom printed based on the same data points. For example, suppose a recipient lives in ZIP Code 90210. In that case, a QR code scan opens an electronic coupon and directs the recipient to the nearest location to purchase the product. Customers respond to coupons for items they like at a store near their house.

Companies can use variable QR codes for identification applications, such as secure ticketing or document verification. Each code can contain unique identification information, making it difficult to copy or counterfeit.

Printing and Tracking Technology

Document Data Solutions’ inkjet technology allows print service providers to print QR codes with unique values on every item, making the pieces individually trackable and allowing clients to follow up with customers who scan the codes. The DDS solution will enable printers to print unique identifiers as part of the QR code and track the document’s life cycle, perfect for calculating the ROI of an advertising campaign.

Printers can hit a home run for their clients by incorporating static, dynamic, and variable QR codes into printed collateral and direct mail. The recipient’s overall experience is enhanced because they see web content meant only for them. By leveraging the power of QR codes, printing companies can increase revenue through more effective marketing campaigns, improved customer engagement, and enhanced customer retention.

 Get in the Game with Numbering Technology from DDS

Document Data Solutions provides unrivaled customized data collection, quality control, and printing solutions. DDS’ technology is the industry standard for printing unique identifiers for applications requiring a unique code. The DDS software specifies rules for creating identifiers, guarding against duplicate identifiers, and tracking the disposition of documents bearing those identifiers. DDS has over a quarter century of experience and research in the print and mail industry and maintains key industry partnerships. We engineer each solution specifically for individual applications using pioneering software and hardware technology.