Whats the deal with business cards?

So I was looking at my desk the other day and noticed a stack of business cards that I have collected over the past few months.

You know how it goes, you go to a business meeting and we all exchange business cards. While in the meeting if I look around the room I also notice that everyone has a Iphone, or a Blackberry or Driod. Why are we handing each other a business card? I look at your card to see your title then it goes in my folder,  then on my desk, then in the garbage. If you really left an impression then just maybe I’ll take the time to put your info into my data base. Most of the time I wait for you to e-mail me, then I get your info from your e-mail signature. Don’t even get me started on people that don’t use an e-mail signature!

So this article I was reading from Mashable called,”Why your next card may be virtual” had some great points to be made as to why we should stop using business cards all together. I don’t think it is going to happen over night, mainly because people still like to be creative and use the card to help them stand out, but at the same time it is rare that I keep business cards around for very long. I do however keep data and contact information for ever in many cases.

A digital business card has a great chance of making it into my data base, where handing me a business card may not. Take a look at this new technology, called Bump. Granted you both need to have the app on your phone but that is even becoming more common today. I think as more and more people are trying to go paperless it makes since, last time I looked business cards are made out of paper! Just trying to think out of the box.

Would love to hear your pros and cons for business cards!

Posted on June 24, 2010 at 4:20 pm
Michael Fanning | Category: Business today, Real Estate Related, Uncategorized | Tagged ,

4 responses to “Whats the deal with business cards?”

  1. Michael- I was just thinking about this last night at a networking event. An insurance agent I know was giving a stack of his cards to a mortgage broker to hand out. I thought to myself – “Wow, I never hand out business cards when I refer someone. I send them an email with a phone number and an email.”

    I am also amused (saddened?) to see people at such events who think networking is about giving out as many business cards as possible. The cards I got last night went straight to the garbage. I don’t know a thing about the people who gave them to me and they didn’t seem interested in really networking.

    I love Chris Brogan’s take on this. (Let’s agree not to exchange business cards just because we’re supposed to.) http://www.chrisbrogan.com/my-plans-for-sxsw/

    I spoke with Chris briefly in Austin this year and was glad we didn’t have to exchange cards. I know how to get a hold of him if I need to.

    A tool I liked, but seems to have vanished was “My Dropcard”. http://www.crunchbase.com/company/dropcard

    Bump is a neat idea, but with My DropCard all you needed was an email account. I’m curious what tools other folks are using that are more universal than Bump.

  2. Michael Fanning says:

    I agree with you Geordie, I think that the business card served a purpose when it was the manor in which we exchanged information but today that isn’t the case. Maybe my next post should be what are some creative ideas that can replace the business card in a digital world?

  3. The more I think about it, it’s not about the technology. A business card is really handy if someone WANTS to have your contact info written down. My first name is a little tricky, so a business card is a handy way to make sure people have it spelled write.

    What is strange to me is how people misuse and overuse business cards. The book “Never Eat Lunch Alone” (required reading) dispells the idea that networking is pressing your card into as many hands as possible. That’s the same as a SPAM email and gets treated the same. I’ve been in real estate classes where some go-getter has special cards made up touting 30% referral fees and puts one on every seat in the classroom. Again, it’s spam.

    I always carrry cards with me. Skiing, hiking, grocery store- always. I’m happy to give them out when requested, but I won’t press one into unwilling hands. Unwilling hands rarely pick up the phone or type an email looking to further a business relationship.

  4. Michael Fanning says:

    I do agree with that but I can’t begin to tell you how many times I have asked for a card only to loose it and have to go search online to find contact info. My point is if a card is asked for and the other person has a smart phone of some kind then use that opportunity by getting in their data base right then with technology.

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