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Show Me Your Barcode!

Jonathan Osman

Jonathan Osman

By Jonathan Osman

When you think of a barcode, you are no doubt thinking of the UPC labels that exist on the back of EVERYTHING.  The lines on a barcode correspond with a database that delivers information on the item scanned.  The technology is so tried and true that it can now be adapted for an untold number of uses including real estate.

To start, you’ll need to create your own barcode.  Somewhere George Orwell is spinning in his grave at the notion that we can create and distribute personal data with a simple barcode… but we can. I used a website called Scanlife.com to create my barcode for free.  Now, whenever someone scans my personalized bar code, they can import my contact information into their smartphone with just one click.

barcodeThis barcode can be printed on anything and displayed everywhere including as profile pic on Facebook, on your business cards, e-mail signature; the list goes on and on.

Think of how easy it would be to gather contacts at the next convention you attended if you could simply scan and import the persons contact info via a barcode?  You wouldn’t need to bring business cards or other promotional paraphernalia.  Simply display your barcode on your phone and let the person you meet scan it with theirs.  Instantly, you are connected, a tree is spared, and you won’t be spending time later entering cards into your database.

Besides distributing contact information, barcodes can be programmed to display any data you so choose.  For example, if you had a rider with a barcode on a for sale sign, it could display everything a flyer would contain of that listing and more.  You could even link it to a mobile IDX to display real-time listing information for the potential buyer. Instead of buying a big expensive ad in your local newspaper, you could run a small ad with a barcode that contained an entire ad campaign.

The potential of barcodes remains unlimited which means that it will result in the downfall of humanity. Until that time, why not explore how you could implement barcodes in your business.

Jonathan Osman is a broker and team leader of the Charlotte House Hunter Group with Keller Williams Realty in Charlotte, N.C. Connect with Jonathan via Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter or his Web site CharlotteHouseHunter.com.

Comments
  1. If you are using this code for business purposes, which from the post it seems you are, then it is not free. Commercial usage requires payment.

  2. Good innovation. However how would you scan a barcode with a smartphone?

    Regards.

  3. I’ve been seeing this crop up more often and hadn’t been paying much attention. Google sent me a letter in the mail saying my business (real estate office) was a “favorite place” on Google [maps] because it was frequented a lot.
    They gave me a fancy-shmancy sticker to hang at our office location along with a barcode attached with an explanation. Makes sense!

    I’ll definitely be paying more attention to this in the future. Cheers!

  4. @eleanor I use Scanlife for the blackberry although most blackberry’s can generate a bar code that can be scanned in the Blackberry Messenger Program.

    Android phones can download the app “Barcode Scanner” that reads a myriad of codes and I believe it’s free. I’m sure that the iPhone app store has a barcode scanner as well.

    @Sarah Taylor That’s very cool. I’ve started looking for the 2-D codes and I found one on the bottom of my shampoo. When I scanned it, it told me where I could buy it for less nearest my location and via the internet. I’m sure retailer didn’t know that.

  5. Kim H.

    Hi John,
    I think this presents an awesome opportunity to engage clients who are already inseparable from their smartphones.

    Re: the 2-D code you mentioned on your shampoo bottle…what does that look like? Is it the same one the cashier scans at the checkout counter?

  6. John, I scanned this with the scanlife app, and all of your personal information shows up. I would be careful with this if I were you.

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