The Office Turntable

Demo CD’s created by music labels are often treated like spam. So to promote the new track from DJ Boris Dlugosch, Kontor Records in Germany decided to send out an orange vinyl along with a 2D turntable as part of the direct mailing.

The people who received the mailing activated the turntable by scanning the QR code on it. This simple action enabled the missing piece of the turntable on the users smartphone which allowed them to play the music. The mailing was a huge success as 71% of the 900 turntable QR codes were activated.

Frozen Cinema

Fiftyfifty is a gallery based in Düsseldorf, Germany, that is actively trying to help out those less fortunate and homeless.

To simulate what it would be like to live on the streets, they got cinemas in Germany to turn the airconditioning to 8°C / 46°F. Then they showed videos of homeless people on the street commenting on the cold cinema experience. It turned out that for them 8°C / 46°F was cozy.

This reality check for the people pushed them to scan the QR codes on the blankets and donate some money to keep the homeless people warm.

The in-store shopping revolution

With smartphone penetration crossing the halfway point, two new start-ups are pushing to change how we shop in-store…


QThru is a mobile point-of-sale platform that helps consumers at grocery and retail stores to shop, scan and check out using their Android and iOS smartphones…


Hointer has automated jean shopping through QR codes. When scanned using the store’s app, the jean is delivered in the chosen size to a fitting room in the store and the customer is alerted to which room to visit. Once the jeans have been tried, customers can either send the jeans back into the system or swipe their card using a machine in each fitting room to make a purchase…

Cobblestone QR Codes

To get into the minds of tourists, Turismo de Portugal decided to fuse the QR Code technology with Portugal’s historical cobblestone tradition. As a result they ended up creating the worlds first QR Code made from Portuguese cobblestones.

The first QR Code was embedded in the city grounds of Lisbon, followed by Barcelona which holds the distinction of being the world’s most visited city. The resounding success of the campaign has led to plans of similar QR Codes being embedded in cities like Berlin, Paris, Tokyo, New York, Viena, Goa, Lima, Oslo…

The eternal happy hour

Happy hours at bars always come to an end. But people at bars in Ecuador can keep the happy hour going by simply scanning a special QR Code coaster at the Budweiser Budclock machine. Every coaster scanned helps extend the happy hour by one minute. 😎

Emart Sunny Sale

Korea continues to set the standard in creative QR Code campaigns! In June last year Homeplus in South Korea had used QR Codes to create a virtual store in a subway station.

Now Emart, South Korea’s largest retailer has created shadow QR codes across the city that only become visible when the sun is at the correct angle in the sky i.e. between midday and 1pm. Consumers who scanned the QR Code during this period were re-directed to the Emart online store where they received $12 coupons for products that would be delivered to their homes.

The Sundial QR Codes were installed at 36 locations across Seoul and served more than 12,000 coupons. Emart membership increased by 58% and lunch hour sales went up by 25%.

The Howling Football

The European Football Championship is going to kick off in a few months, and brands are already getting ready with their advertising pitch. However the brands are not the only ones who want to grab people’s attention.

In Ukraine there a lot of street dogs and cats that are being killed to make the country cleaner and ready to welcome thousands of football tourists. So pan-European animal charity ETN has conceived an incredibly smart and attention grabbing ambient campaign in Hamburg to get people involved in its animal protection program…

Shop and Pay on-the-go

In June last year I had covered how Homeplus in South Korea had created a virtual store in a subway station in order to blend into people’s everyday lives. Since then Procter & Gamble has set up the same virtual stores in four of the busiest subway stations in Prague and Chinese online supermarket Yihodian has also borrowed the idea and installed virtual supermarkets in 15 subway stations around Shanghai.

This year PayPal has also launched the same QR code shops in 15 Singapore subway stations and enabled commuters to buy Valentines gifts from eight different retailers by simply scanning the QR code on their smartphone…

In USA, PayPal has eliminated the need of a wallet or phone altogether. In a partnership with Home Depot, PayPal has begun to roll out an in-store service that enables payments at stores using only a mobile phone number and a pin number at checkout…

Money is truly being re-imagined and contactless payments is going to be a norm by late 2012.

The Buddy Stamp

Most nightclubs in India put an admittance stamp on the wrist of their customers. Turquoise Cottage a nightclub based in Vasant Vihar, New Delhi was no different. However with their digital agency, Webchutney, they created what then went on to be coined as “The Buddy Stamp”.

“The Buddy Stamp” was a unique QR code stamp which upon scanning gave customers useful and actionable information depending on the time of night… 😎

Hologram Christmas Surprise

On November 18, Deutsche Telekom created a multi-city, multi-media spectacular featuring Maria Carey in hologram form! People in Germany, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro and Poland believed they were witnessing Maria Carey live. After 10 minutes the Mariah hologram exploded into the sky and revealed the surprise. 😎 Mariah then reformed to lead all five countries in a rendition of the traditional carol “Silent Night”, then finishing with the all-time favorite “All I want for Christmas is You”.

The concert was attended by more than 12,000 people, and was seen by an additional 27,000 people across the globe via the live internet stream on

During the event, each city was satellite linked to the other, to enable interaction. People at the concert were also given a QR code that took them to a smartphone app of a candle flame.