Messing Around With QR Code Generators and QR Code Usage in Canada

I will be in Boston attending ILMEast at the end of this month (March 25-28). I am seriously contemplating not bringing business cards to this event. Instead I am thinking of bringing only one card that contains a QR code with all my vCARD information and give this to people to scan with their smartphone. Of course I also use the LinkedIn and Bump apps which are both great ways to share contact information.

My motivation in taking this approach is three-fold,

  1. I don’t really need to be carrying more stuff with me when I travel,
  2. It is a convenient feature for potential contacts as they no longer need to enter my information manually
  3. I have to believe their is a positive environmental impact of not using business cards.

What do you think? Would you consider not bringing business cards to an event or conference?

QR Code Generation

A really interesting site that allows you to make a QR code that links to practically any source such as a vCard, webiste, email, Google Maps location, twitter account, etc. is Here is my QR Code that will take you to my LinkedIn profile.

QRCode to Darby Sieben's LinkedIn Profile
QRCode to Darby Sieben's LinkedIn Profile (Scan it for yourself)

If are you looking for a quick and easy way to create a QR code, this is a great site to start with.

Canadian QR Code Data

Of course the first question any marketer is going to ask is what is the usage. I have some data that I compiled from the US that shows what people are using QR Codes for. I also have some Canadian Data of QR Code usage.

The first set of data is from eMarketer that shows Sources of where US Mobile users are scanning a QR Code. Notice that the audience side of scanning from a business card or brochure is 1.9M.

Here is another snapshot from eMarketer that shows the reasons that US Smartphone users have scanned a QR code. As this is still in early days, I buy the notion that almost half of people are using our of curiosity. However, 41% are using to get more information, which of course means capturing a person’s contact information from a business card.


Finally here is some data from CDN users. This was released by ComScore in November 2011, Smartphone Adoption Reached 40% in Canada. According to ComScore 8.1% of all mobile subscribers and 18.1% of Smartphone subscribers have used QR Codes.

Canadian Smartphone Usage