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Fun With QR Codes

A very cool QR code on a billboard in Tokyo

Now this is cool. What a great idea.

Reader Engagement With Transmedia (How To Use QR Codes)

For those too lazy to read the linked article I’ll summarise, QR Codes can be used in e-books to enhance reader interaction, linking to soundtrack music, additional information and more.

I’m quite in love with my QR code I made for this site, and you’ve probably seen that I included it in my business card. How fun would it be to do something like offer bookmarks at a book signing with a QR code on the bottom which leads to an exclusive site (which you only reach with the code) containing extra content for the book, like a short story, alternate covers, initial character sketches (if you’re arty) or other stuff that might intrigue. If word got out about these book marks at your signings perhaps more people would come, meaning more face time with readers and more people in local book stores (lifts up sign ‘save the book stores’ and waves it around).

If you like that idea you can run with it, I’m happy to share, but I’d love if anyone asks where you got the idea from if you’d link them back to me.

I’ve been obsessed with QR codes since I went to Japan just over two years ago. Even back then QR codes were on EVERYTHING! They were on the massive billboard on Shibuya 109, they were on a1 posters around train stations, on little advertisements on vending machines, even on the tissue packs the cute promo girls give you out the front of train stations(you’ll never run out of tissues in Tokyo!). I was curious what they were and excited when I learned more. Sadly I didn’t have a smart phone back then, but I have since and trust me it gets a workout.

The thought of playing with QR codes like this really excites me, and the ideas are coming at me at a mile a minute. I hope I can get them all down… and eventually get back to my NaNo novel.

5 Comments


  1. // Reply

    That was very educational! I didn’t know they had any QR codes on ebooks?
    Are there any you know of that I can have a look at?


    1. // Reply

      This article is the first I’ve heard of it, so I can’t list any sorry. It seems like putting QR codes in is an indie author thing, but it might take off with traditionally published as well. It sounds like a lot of fun, but I think QR codes can be used for a lot of fun things too(like the bookmarks). I have visions of an exciting underground revolution with instructions given via QR codes randomly stickered around a dystopian Brisbane. Sounds like a good story, but I’m too busy to develop the idea(and its obvious plot holes) right now. If no one else does it I might do it one day ;p


  2. // Reply

    The problem I have with QR codes is finding a Good app to read them in the first place I no longer have a smartphone simply because I spen most of my time at home and prefer to use my desktop or home tablet which does not have a camera but I see your point.
    Voicelessmusic recently posted..Instrumental Irish Folk With ScenesMy Profile


    1. // Reply

      I think that’s why QR codes aren’t the perfect advertising medium, because not everyone has a smart phone. If one did go down the path of putting QR codes into a book like in the linked article you would want to be certain the information wasn’t pivotal for just that reason. However they are fun little things and a lot of gadget geeks and technophiles can’t resist them.
      Perhaps someone will make an app for a desktop PC that can scan through articles some how… I’m sure there’s someone smart enough out there.
      Thanks for commenting.

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