Are your job ads mobile tagged? 2D Barcodes - QR Code & Microsoft Tag

Posted By: Thomas Shaw, 7:45am Friday 05 March 2010

Have you ever noticed weird barcodes printed in the newspaper, on outdoor advertising posters or on the back of food packages? Don't panic, there was no stuff up at the printers. These barcodes are there for a reason…for YOU to scan over with your mobile phone and find out more information.

With the number of internet enabled mobile phones on the rise in Australia, are you taking full advantage of mobile marketing?

Mobile tagging is the process of providing data on mobile devices, commonly through the use of data (such as a URL) encoded in a two-dimensional barcode, meant to be read and inputted using a camera phone.

By creating a mobile tag you can create unlimited possibilities to transform physical media (print advertising, billboards, product packages, information signs, in-store merchandising, job ads, business cards etc) into live measurable links to easily access information online. These tags can allow us to measure the ROI of the marketing spend $ and allow us to measure when (and potentially where) users are responding to job ads across all media with detailed impression activity.

One of the most popular 2D barcodes is QR codes (Quick Response Code), which are a two-dimensional matrix barcode that can contain a limited amount of data. QR Codes can be easily created online via a website or automatically through an API.

If I was walking past a shop window and noticed they were advertising a job; instead of trying to remember all the details on job ad, you could scan the barcode, save it for later or send it to your friends. In the example shown below, RECRUIT2retail have combined the specific job title and full ad/application form URL into the QR Code. Try scanning it on your mobile phone and see what it says.

Unlike most popular 2D barcodes, which use black-and-white square pixels, the Microsoft Tag format - (High Capacity Color Barcode or HCCB) is based on colors in a triangle-based arrangement. The QR Code stores the data within the pixel code, whereas the Microsoft tag only contains a short URL. When you scan the tag it redirects you to that URL which contains the full tag information.

Unfortunately with any technology product, problems do exist. The barcode needs to be printed big enough for mobile phones to scan the image. Your mobile phone also needs to have specific reader software downloaded and installed. While the use of mobile tagging is not high in Australia, how can YOU make your marketing stand out from the crowd?