Print media is facing tough times globally and this is particularly true for niche magazines. Publishers around the world have started to take radical steps such as launching iPad editions and creating paywalls for online content.
CyberMedia has announced that their flagship magazine, ‘PCQuest’, will now contain Quick Response (QR) codes, which readers can scan using their mobile phones. A phone with a code reader (which most modern phones can download for free) will be able to use these codes to interact with the printed text – for example, if you are reading a story in the magazine about, for example, printers, there could be a code displayed on the page, which you can scan to be taken to, for example, HP’s online store for printers.
It lets readers consume the base content in print while moving back and forth to multimedia on their connected mobile, thus extending the print medium into a multimedia environment. Advertisers could also benefit from this, as in the example above, or by enhancing their print messaging with a short video feature which could be viewed on the mobile.
“We believe that timing the launch of QR codes with the 3G rollout will allow readers to move smoothly onto the next level of interactivity and convergence for print media,” said Pradeep Gupta, Chairman, CyberMedia.
“We expect this advertising and marketing innovation to lead to the rejuvenation of print – integrating print with rich multimedia on the mobile,” Gupta added.
“QR codes need two things – an Internet server somewhere; and a camera-equipped smartphone, preferably running 3G. With 3G just rolling out in India, this is a great time to bring interactivity to print, which was in danger of getting jaded,” said Prasanto K Roy, Chief Editor of PCQuest.
“QR codes can help an advertiser measure response, which has always been a challenge in print advertising. They can also be linked to social networking sites like Facebook,” Roy added.
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He joined the company in 2016 as Head of India and South Asia at Discovery Network