HOLLY SPRINGS, NC — OFM, one of the nation’s leading office and school furniture manufacturers, distributors, and wholesalers, has unveiled for the first time QR codes in its 2012 product catalog, a high-tech effort that is rare in the furniture manufacturing industry. The codes can be accessed with any smartphone using several free apps.
“Using this kind of interactive technology is unheard of in the furniture manufacturing industry, so we felt this was an opportunity to offer our dealers something they can’t get elsewhere,” said Blake Zalcberg, chief operating officer of OFM. “Whether they are on the road or in the office, now our dealers and potential customers will have the ability to learn more about OFM’s products at the touch of a button.”
Short for Quick Response, QR codes are a square barcode, which can be used as a visual shortcut to a website. Free apps for iPhone, BlackBerry and Android phones translate the codes and take users directly to the link. In this year’s OFM catalog, half of the QR codes featured link to informational product videos while the other half takes the user to product specification pages.
“Aside from the introduction of photographs, print catalogs haven’t changed much in the last two centuries,” said Zalcberg. “But the use of QR codes and smartphones allows us to add a whole new layer of information for our customers. It’s like adding a virtual showroom to the pages of the standard print catalog.”
The new feature didn’t cost anything for the company except a little extra time to add the QR codes to the catalog’s pages, Zalcberg said. OFM already creates informational videos for every one of their products, another online innovation the company pioneered.
“We are embracing what technology has to offer to help our dealers with their purchases and ultimately the end user,” said Zalcberg. “Being early technological adopters in the industry is what sets us apart from our competitors and this is the added value we offer to our customers.”
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