Let’s start with the basics. A QR code is a 2 dimensional bar code. QR stands for “quick response”. You can download a QR reader on your Smart phone, your phones browser will redirect to the programmed information embedded within the code. You can embed almost any type of information in a code including, your web address, phone number, email, video and social networking page. This is a very quick way to get information right on your smart phones. QR codes are very popular right now being used on business cards, email signatures, magazine advertisements and even billboards! You can also get them printed on apparel if you wish and be your own billboard. There are many universal QR code readers that you can download to your smart phone. There are also free and paid options and there are some that track your analytics.
A Microsoft Tag is a new type of code that can connect you to the same information a QR code can direct you to. Creating a Microsoft Tag and using it is free. You can create Microsoft Tag and use it on your business cards, advertising, and clothing etc. You do have to download the free Microsoft Tag Reader or a compatible tag reader on your smart phone in order to open a web page, call a contact or send a sms text message. Microsoft Tags are fully customizable. You can create your tag in black and white or multicolor and add to your custom designed logo to continue pushing and marketing your brand! Microsoft Tag allows you to measure your campaign analytics and track effectiveness and performance. The Tag reader runs on all major phone platforms, and is downloaded only on the Microsoft Tag website.
I’ve given you some points on QR Codes vs Microsoft Tag and they both have their unique qualities. I am really leaning towards the Microsoft Tag because I’m all about business branding and customizations to market your business. I feel that you should always be a representation of your business, and a walking billboard if you are marketing your business at conferences, social events, and in everyday life. Why not wear your t-shirt on a Saturday while running errands. I think is really simple to download the mobi tag reader to your smart phone just like any other application.
I’ve been conflicted for months on this topic so I contacted my friend Jessica, That Tech Chick which I refer to as “My Tech Chick” because she’s my go to girl and this is what she had to say. There are pros and cons to both QR codes and Microsoft Tags. First QR codes seem to be more universal and not governed by one company. Ultimately you can do the same thing you can do with a QR code that you can do with a Microsoft Tag. However Microsoft tags are controlled by Microsoft and even though they are free now, who’s to say that in the future they won’t begin to charge fees? Microsoft does allow you to customize the tags a bit more than QR codes do with size, colors and using your logo but, will it be worth it if Microsoft decides imposing a fee.
Below you’ll see an example of Jessica’s QR Code, my Microsoft Tag and new business card design.