Are business cards dead?
Every so often, the “business cards are dead” meme goes around. High tech business people are more likely to exchange Twitter addresses than business cards. (@beckymccray, by the way.)
Some people use cards that just say “Google me” or only have their name. The implication is that you can find them so easily through a simple search, that they don’t need to give you any contact details. (See an example from Rex Hammock, plus a link to his “real” business card.)
At conferences, we’re seeing technology solutions that automatically exchange contact info, like the cute Poken devices or the “bump” application for some smart phones. These things come and go. Remember when Palm Pilots used to be the cool tech solution? They’ve all but disappeared.
In the non-tech savvy world, business cards are very much alive. Here are three ways I’m still using business cards:
- My liquor store business cards with drink recipes are popular with customers.
- In my consulting business, I find that most people in Northwest Oklahoma still say, “Do you have a card?” Out here, no one asks for my Twitter name.
- At conferences full of tech geeks, I still go through a few. I am very selective about handing them out.
Our friend Des Walsh re-examined the design of his business cards, and the discussion is well worth following. And we went through some ideas for great business cards of our own, too.
If we need a moral to this story, it’s this:
- Order new cards, not too many, and keep them current.
How about you? Are you using business cards? Where do you tend to hand them out?
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Gladys Strickland says
I’m in Memphis, and at a Social Media breakfast last fall, the subject of which online identities to put on biz cards, and where to put them came up. Never did the idea of getting rid of the cards get mentioned – I think too many people still use them, even if only to use the info to put in their contact list.
I need new cards, and like you said, I plan to get a few so I can update as needed without losing a lot of money.
Wes Masters says
I work for a company that’s completely online. Business cards are still relevant, but the thing I’ve noticed is how fast people connect on LinkedIn. Within hours of meeting people at a conference or networking meeting, I’ll get and send out invites to connect. Maybe that’s a new form of business card?
Jennifer Moline, PsPrint says
LOVE the drink recipe card. I think business cards can’t die out because when you network, you A) might not remember someone’s name or how to spell it and therefore won’t be able to find the person on LinkedIn and B) you simply might not remember every person you meet at a conference. Even if you do jot the person’s info in your phone/PDA, you might not remember that you put it there. A business card is an eye-catching, tangible item.
Ken Burgin says
Make the cards quirky and noticeable eg choose 10 favourite photos and put them on the back of the wonderful cards from http://www.moo.com
Joanne Steele says
Got back from the California Cultural and Heritage Tourism Conference last week with a wad of business cards. Luckily I took time to write notes on the back of each.
Interesting thing for me was how few people at a tourism conference had anything BUT business cards. I’m reordering more right away!