Decoding QR Codes

22 May

Even though QR (Quick Response) codes have been around for a while, it hasn’t quite caught up in terms of popularity outside of Japan and Korea. Invented by Denso-Wave in 1994, a subsidiary of Toyota, QR codes were created to track motor vehicle parts in manufacturing plants. It was only in the early 2000s, with the introduction of camera phones and WAP (Wireless Application Protocol) that QR codes took on a new purpose and were used commercially.

The QR code is interesting as it has the potential to serve as an intermediary form between the offline and online world. QR codes can be generated to contain information such as URLs, text, images, email addresses, contact information and more, which can then be printed or displayed anywhere. Decoding a QR code on a mobile phone can be done by simply capturing an image of the code via the mobile phone’s camera, and using a QR code reader to decode the stored information.

As it is so easy to decode a QR code – all you need is to capture an image and use a QR code reader – QR codes can be displayed on any sort of medium. In fact, it can be displayed anywhere, and in any size as long as it can be captured in whole – think about all the different possibilities!

[READ] 30 Interesting Ways QR Codes Are Being Used, Joel Buckland

Why It Will Work Now

So why are QR codes suddenly gaining popularity around the world? In Australia, QR codes are starting to spring up in advertisements (they have been featured in’s latest outdoor campaign) and even in Queensland University of Technology’s prospectus.

[WATCH] QUT Uses QR Codes To Bring Prospectus To Life, mUmBRELLA

[READ] Home Owners “Exposed”, B&T

1.       Cameras are now a common feature in mobile phones

Cameras are now a staple feature in mobile phones and many users are starting to use it more actively. Photo-taking with the mobile phone has become a culture in itself. Continue reading


Using Social Media Effectively (Part 1)

29 Apr

It is always important to remember that social media began on the premise of allowing friends and family to stay in contact with one another, as well as for people to make new friends. It was only in the recent few years that businesses started tapping into this medium after realizing the potential of social media as a marketing and promotional tool.

However for many businesses, the transition from more traditional forms of media (i.e. print, radio and TV) to social media can come as quite a shock.  There are four points I would like to share; below are the first two.

1. Be personable.

When using social media, companies have to remember that it is no longer based on a top-down communication model. The audience has equal power as it is a self-publishing medium after all. This however may not necessarily be a bad thing as it is a chance for companies to humanize their brand and make it more personable. It is also a chance to communicate directly and learn what makes them tick. Get out there and be their friend.

[WATCH] “How to Humanize Your Company and Get People to Share Your Story”, Social Media Examiner

The last thing you want to do on social media is to be instructing your audience and telling them what they should or should not be doing. Consumers like to know that they have freedom and the power of choice; which is the beauty of the online medium. Things spread very fast on the internet – there’s viral good and viral bad. Let’s just say it’s better to keep it to the former.

2. Know your audience and engage them.

With so many different types of social media networks and platforms out there, and new ones emerging every so often, it can get rather daunting for companies to manage their social media presence. Continue reading

Companies + Social Media = ?

26 Apr

Every day in the news, there’s bound to be an article which talks about social media. No doubt social media is a powerful medium – as seen from the use of Twitter in January’s uprising in Egypt to the immense support recently given to Japan that has emerged in the social media landscape. For many of us, it is also part of our daily lives. Keeping in touch with friends from all over the world through Facebook and posting our thoughts and ideas on Twitter and the various blog mediums out there.

In short, the impact of social media is strong. But here comes the big question – how important is social media for a business?

Following the Trend

Many companies who have yet to establish their brand on social networking sites are certainly feeling the pressure to follow suit with their own Facebook page, Twitter account, company blog, YouTube channel and more. With the hype surrounding social media and its effectiveness in driving campaigns, raising brand awareness and increasing profits, it is no surprise why companies feel the need to engage their own in-house consultant or an agency to help in their social media efforts.

But, could social media be all hype? After all, it is a time-consuming fast-paced medium that requires constant attention and offers very minimal control.

[WATCH] “Vodafail The Musical / Telephone – A Tribute to 3 & Vodafone Australia” by TV Live On Stage

However, when managed well, it is able to produce great results in a short time.

[READ] “10 Best Social Media Campaigns of 2010”, Techprone

In my next post, I will cover some important points/observations that companies should take note of before jumping on the bandwagon.