Why the best online marketing may be headed offline

Friday - 11/12/2010, 1:46pm EST

Quick Response or QR codes are advanced bar codes that can store more than a couple thousand characters of information within a tiny square.

The QR code looks like a 3-D crossword puzzle (see right for QR code for the DorobekINSIDER contact info) and are read primarily by smartphones. This super bar code may change the future of marketing.

"By printing a QR bar code on any item — a lamp, the program booklet of an event, or a retail store window -- a consumer can quickly link from the real-world experience to rich web content via his smartphone," Mashable reports. "Using QR codes, jump points to the Internet can be placed anywhere in the physical world."

In effect, QR codes could become real-world hyperlinks, Mashable reports. For example, you go to a hotel and see a lamp you like. You scan the lamp with your smartphone and buy the lamp online.

This is what Mashable is calling "Context-Sensitive Marketing" or CMS.

And check out how the Washington Post used QR codes.

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