Linkz IM managing director Andrew Perry-Smith said: “Paragon works with the country’s leading brands, so a partnership with them will really showcase what the Linkz platform can do.”

The app, launched last year, is free to consumers and scans embedded codes in printed products to take them to additional content about the the brand or product. This can include anything from videos and competitions to more images, extra information and downloadable vouchers giving consumers money off their next purchase.

“If you can build it and optimise it for a small mobile screen, you can do pretty much what you want,” said Perry-Smith.

He added that the product worked with any type of printed material. “Print advertising is the most obvious thing, but you can use it on books, labels, catalogues, packaging, point-of-sale, direct mail and outdoor communication − anything that’s printed and has an image can become interactive.

The Linkz app, available on android and iOS, also allows clients to gauge the success of their print communications by tracking the number of scans, where and what content users access.

“Print has always been a black box. You create printed content and send it out, but because you then require consumers to interact with you by other means you can’t see how effective it is being,” said Perry-Smith.

He added: “Interactive print is a way of reaching and engaging consumers rather than saying, remember the URL and phone number, or search for us later. You give them a message saying ‘respond right now’.

“It removes the obstacles of not being able to do something there and then. This makes print more relevant in today’s market, perhaps even more so than radio and TV, because you can’t do that yet on those platforms.”

Paragon group development director Tim Smith said: “Print will never be the same again. We are aware that brands and in particular marketing agencies are looking for new and exciting ways to communicate with their customers and we feel that interactive print meets with this objective.

He added: “Behind complex technology the concept is simple and provides three main benefits; a campaign can be extended to become bigger than the printed page; recipients can interact with live, real time data through a multi-media experience and for the first time brands can analyse and measure response, activation and even locational.”