How to use QR codes in print ads: Examples and use-cases

Last updated:   September 09, 2021

Run a successful printed marketing campaign using QR codes in print ads. Here, we will show you examples of QR codes in print ads.

By utilizing and integrating a QR code in your printed campaign, you will be able to provide more informative and more engaging marketing materials for the audience.

QR codes as a digital tool were invented to embed any type of information and are generated using a QR code generator online.

Furthermore, the information is accessible using a smartphone device making them a convenient and on-the-go tool for many marketers.

When the QR code is scanned, it gives your target audience valuable additional information about your campaign.

Related: How to maximize your O2O Marketing with QR Codes today!

What QR code solutions can you use for your print ads?

QR codes allow you to redirect the scanners to various content. To have a successful QR code campaign you must choose the right QR code for your content. Here the examples of QR code solutions that you can display on your print ads.

Create a QR code for your website to increase traffic

Having a strong online presence is a great factor in marketing. Increase your website traffic and connect your printed marketing ads to your website by creating a URL QR code.

To generate a QR code for your website, copy the URL of your website and paste it on a URL QR code generator. Then generate and download your QR code

Related: How to create a website QR code in 9 steps!

Generate a QR code for your digital business card

Giving a physical business card is good but having a business card that can be easily saved on mobile phones is better. Attach a vCArd QR code on your business cards and allow people to save a digital copy of your business information by just scanning a QR code.

Related: How to make a vCard QR code in 6 steps!

Create a QR code that redirects to your video or audio ads

Redirect your scanners to engaging content using a file QR code. This QR code allows you to upload files such as video, photo, or audio. Allowing you to redirect scanners to your video ads.

If you are promoting a music festival or a concert you can also use the file QR code to redirect scanners to an MP3, allowing scanners to hear some sample songs from participating artists.

Related: How to convert any file to a QR code

Promote your social media and increase your followers using QR codes

Want to increase your social media followers? Generate a social media QR code, and display and link all your social media platforms in one scan. This QR code allows people to view and follow all your social media account.

Related: Social media QR code: Connecting all of your apps in one scan!

Allow customers to easily access your online menu


If you are a restaurant owner, allow customers to easily order without waiting for the waiter to give the menu. Use a menu QR code and display this QR code on your restaurant table allowing customers to see your menu by just scanning a QR code.

Create a webpage that can be accessed using QR codes


Purchasing a website domain can be expensive. Create your own webpage using an H5 QR code. With an H5 QR code generator, you customize your own webpage and add links, images, and videos to make your webpage more engaging.

Related: How to create a URL QR Code

Display multiple photos by generating a gallery QR code

Want to display multiple photos in your QR code campaigns? If you’re an entrepreneur who wants to include all the photos of your products in one QR code without overcrowding the landing page, then the gallery QR code is the best QR code solution for you.

Create a gallery QR code by attaching an image slider on the H5 QR code generator and display several photos in one scan.


Redirect different scanners to different websites

If you own or manage an international company and want to redirect scanners of a QR code to websites that accommodate their preferred language, the multi URL QR code is the best option for you.

This QR code allows you to redirect scanners to different websites based on their language preferences, the number of scans, and the time or location where the QR code was scanned.

Related: What is a multi URL QR code and how to use it?

Boost your app downloads using App store QR code

Searching for a specific App on the App store can be difficult for some. Allow customers to quickly find your App by generating an App QR code. By just scanning this QR code, scanners will be instantly redirected to your App on the App store.

Related: Why your website needs an App QR code

Examples of QR codes in print marketing ads

One of the great features of QR codes is that you can place them on any printed material. Here are examples of print ads where you can display QR codes.

Brochure


Brochures are single or multi-paged folded paper used to advertise products and services. This marketing media is usually used to advertise multiple products and services from a company.

Pamphlets


Pamphlets are usually designed for non-commercial promotions and contain fewer pages than brochures. This tool provides information usually to educate people on a specific subject or event.

If you want to provide more information about your campaign event, add a QR code on your posters and redirect the scanners to a video campaign.

Flyers


Flyers are one-sided hands out that are commonly used to promote events or special services. They usually contain fewer words than pamphlets and brochures.

You can use QR codes in your flyers to give customers discounts on the products and services that you are promoting.

Magazine


Magazines are multi-page periodical publications that are printed in gloss-coated and matte papers. They cover a wide array of different industry-specific topics combined with images and illustrations.

They are usually used to feature products and articles containing customer testimony.

Business Card


Business cards are cards that contain the business information of a certain individual or a company. They are usually shared during introductions to provide clients your contact information for future queries.

Add a QR code to your business card to give your clients a Vcard version of your business card. Making it easier to access and save your information on their mobile phones.

Newspaper

A newspaper is a periodical printed publication that contains news about current events, feature articles, announcements, and advertisements.

They are generally printed and distributed daily or weekly. It covers various fields such as business, politics, sports, reviews, and many more.

Newsletter


A newsletter is a printed report that contains news regarding the activities of an organization or business.  Newsletters usually address one main topic and written for a specific audience such as members of an organization or company staff.

Poster

Posters are temporary promotions usually printed on strong paper, canvas, or vinyl. Usually, a mix of textual and graphic elements is used in posters to inform audiences about current events or advertise a product.

Billboards


Billboards are large-scale printed advertising structures generally placed outdoors. It is larger than posters and the advertisement are printed in polyester yarn coated with PVC (polyvinyl chloride) or PE (polyethylene).

Books

Books are composed of several sheets of paper bound to a cover. It is used to record information or write stories to amuse or persuade readers.

You can put a QR code on your book cover that redirects to the book publishing company or give information about the author

Packaging


Packaging is the product’s cover or enclosure used to protect its content from external factors. It is also used to attract customers and encourage them to purchase your products.

Labels


Labels are pieces of paper or cloth attached or affixed to describe or identify a product. They can also be a tag or a sticker.

Stickers

Stickers are adhesive patch that contains picture or text.  These adhesive patches are usually made of paper plastic or vinyl. Stickers are usually used for brand logos or in packaging

Tags

Tags are labels that are attached by means of tying or hanging. These tag labels are usually used in clothing brand labels and product inventory.

By using QR codes in inventory tags you will allow the clerk to easily check the products by just scanning a QR code

Invitation cards

An invitation card is a card or paper on which the invitation is printed or written. Information about the event such as the time and venue is shown on the invitation card.

You can use a QR code in your invitation cards such as a wedding invitation card to show your prenup video or other additional information about the event.

Tickets

Tickets are cards or piece of paper that gives the right to the ticket owner to enter or participate an event.

By using QR codes in tickets you will be able to conduct a contactless business process that could take the place of ticket attendants. 

Identification cards

Identification cards or ID are cards that provide the basic data about a student or employee.

These cards display the person’s name, age, address, and the person’s photo. This is used as identification in places like school, workplace, and many more.

By using QR codes in your ID you will be able to easily check the attendance of your employees or students. 

Reasons to put a QR code in your printed campaign

Give more information

 One of the great advantages of using a QR code in your campaign material is that it allows you to give more information without taking a lot of space.


Printed ads have limitations such as the size of your advertising material, and you could only give limited information.

 By using a QR code you will be able to give detailed information without overcrowding your marketing material.

Gives your scanner engaging content

Reading long text for detailed information could discourage scanners. By using a QR code you will be able to redirect your scanners to more engaging content such as video, photos, or audios.


You can display a QR code in your product packaging and redirect your scanner to a video instruction on how to properly use your product. This way you will be able to provide a quick and easy-to-follow guide for your products.

Gives an interactive campaign

Printed ads alone can only give information and entertain the audience. Make a successful and interactive campaign using QR codes.

An example of this is the QR code campaign of World Park New York in 2010. QR codes were placed in different areas of the park.

When scanned, these QR codes will redirect the scanners to different interactive content such as quizzes, music, and videos related to the park’s history.

Examples of QR codes in print ads: Use-cases of QR codes in real-life marketing

QR code for Lumos helmet video manual

Lumos Helmet the creator of New Standard In Bike Helmet incorporated a QR code in their manual brochure for Ultra Helmet. The QR code will redirect the scanners to a video manual, where users can learn the cool stuff when scanned.

QR code for cashless payment on Paypal


Establishments such as restaurants, that accept payment through Paymaya, display a QR code on their desks where customers can scan the QR code to pay for their bills. Making a quick cashless payment for the customers.

QR code for McDonald’s posters and food packaging


McDonald’s placed a poster that has a QR code, near the entrance for customers to check-in by just scanning a QR code. They also display QR codes on the food packaging that redirects customers to the Mcdonald’s website.

QR code to see how Levi’s jeans would fit

Levi’s integrated a QR code on the jean’s tag. Once the users scan the QR code, they will be able to see how the jeans look when fitted.

Practices you should follow in order to make an effective QR code marketing campaign

Now that we have presented examples of QR codes in print ads, you must also know how to use these QR codes efficiently in your campaigns.

Here are the practices you should know in order to have an effective QR code campaign.

Use Dynamic QR code

One way to find out that you are having an effective QR code campaign is by tracking them. Dynamic QR codes have features that are not available in static QR codes. In using a dynamic QR code you will be able to edit your QR code URL.

This type of QR code also allows you to track your QR code data such as:

  • The number of scans made: Dynamic QR code will show you the total number of scans that were made in your QR code.
  • The time when the scans were made: This type of QR code will also present to you the timeline when the scans were made.
  • The device used in scanning the QR code: You will also be able to track the devices used in scanning your QR code.
  • Location of scan: And you will also be able to track down the location data of your scanners. By using a dynamic QR code you will be able to track down the country, region, or city where your QR code was scanned.

Make your QR code campaign more efficient by generating a dynamic QR code.

Create brand awareness in your QR code

One of the key features of a successful printed ads campaign is that it must attract the audience’s attention. Attract more audience and create brand awareness by matching your QR code design according to your brand.

QR code generators nowadays allow you to generate a customized QR code. Generate and design a QR code that represents your brand’s color. You can also put your company logo in your QR code.


While branding is important, you must also not go overboard in customizing your QR code to the point that it affects its scanning ability. Before downloading and deploying your QR code, test your generated QR code to make sure it is readable by mobile devices.

Choose the right size for your QR code

Make your QR codes a prominent feature of your printed ads. Putting a very small QR code in your campaigns will not only make the QR code unnoticeable but will also affect its readability.



On printed ads such as business cards, magazines, and invitations, the QR code size must be at least 1.2 inches. If a QR code is to be displayed on a billboard, then the QR code size should be bigger.

To know the right QR code size for your printed ads, follow this formula:

 Size of QR Code= Distance between the QR code and the scanner/10

Do make sure that you are displaying the right QR code size by testing your QR code scanability from its ideal scanning distance.

Make sure that the QR code redirects to a mobile-optimized webpage



One of the most dismaying things in displaying a QR code is that if the QR code has an inaccessible website.

People scan QR codes using their mobile phones thus redirecting the scanners to outdated non-mobile-optimized links and broken links will not be able to redirect them to your content.

Avoid this mishap by generating a dynamic QR code. Dynamic QR code enables you to change and edit your URL even after it was downloaded and displayed.

 Thus, allows you to correct any typos in your URL without retracing and changing the QR codes in your printed materials.

Display a high-resolution QR code

The main feature in running a QR code campaign is that the QR code must be scannable. Placing a high-quality resolution QR code in printed materials is the key factor for the QR code's scannability.


Thus, you must avoid printing blurry and pixelated QR codes in your offline campaigns. Choose the right image format for your material.

For printed materials such as invitation cards and flyers use the JPG format while using the SVG format for bigger campaign material such as billboards.

Use the right material for your QR campaign

The material used for your printed QR code campaigns can also affect the QR code scannability.

Materials that reflect too much light might affect the QR code scannability thus, you should avoid using light-colored glossy materials in your QR code outdoor poster campaign.


Also, make sure that the QR code is placed on a flat and even surface. Creased and ribbed materials can disfigure a QR code which will ultimately affect its readability.

Strategically place your QR code campaign

Place your QR where people can easily see and scan these QR codes.

Displaying your printed campaign in busy and crowded places where stopping to scan a QR code may stall others and create traffic will discourage some people to scan.


Place your printed QR code campaign in places where people are having a downtime. You should also make sure that the QR codes are within reach, ideally, within eye level. Don’t let your scanner tiptoe because your QR code is placed too high, or crouch because your QR code is placed too low.

Also, make sure to place your QR codes where there is a network and wifi signal. Placing your QR campaigns in subways will make your QR code useless because most subways do not have mobile and wifi connectivity.

Check the scanning time

One of the factors that you should check in running a QR code campaign is the scanning time of the QR code.

The time spent in getting the users’ phone, opening a QR code scanner app, scanning the QR code, and redirecting scanners to the webpage should not take more than 15 seconds.

In order to do this, the link of the website to which the users will be directed should not be broken.

For effective printed QR code ads, place the QR codes on stagnant media outlets such as newspapers and posters.

Grow your social media platform using a social media QR code

Displaying QR codes for each of your social media accounts could take up a lot of space in your printed campaign. This could also potentially confuse the scanner.

Avoid clutter in your marketing materials by using a social media QR code. This QR code displays all your social media platforms in one scan. You can also add your online platforms such as Shopify and Uber Eats.

Include a Call to Action tag

Give your audience a reason to scan by adding a CTA (call to action) tag. Engage more customers by adding a simple “scan me” or “scan to watch video” to your QR codes.


Do also make sure to satisfy the scanners by redirecting them to informative and engaging content.

You can also add files such as photos, audio, and videos in your QR code content to make the experience rewarding for your scanners.

Visit QRTiger today

In order to have an effective QR code campaign in your printed materials, you must partner with an efficient QR code generator. QRTiger is a fast and secure QR code generator that allows you to generate various QR code solutions.

QRTiger also allows you to customize your QR code. You can generate a dynamic QR code and track your QR code data using this software. For more queries visit the QRTiger website today.

Ultimate Guide to QR code Marketing