I came across an interesting discussion topic on LinkedIn recently around the subject of business cards. We take it for granted that everyone in business needs a business card, but is this really the case? With business networking sites such as LinkedIn and Plaxo, it is easy for people to exchange all of the information on a business card before they have even met. There are also smartphone applications such as ‘Bump’ that allow you to simply touch your phone with another to instantly share business card information.
So why do we still have them? While we know it is technically feasible to exist in business without a card, the business card still adds some tangibility to the relationship. The card is an extension of the brand that the owner represents. I find that even though I transfer the details from a card into a contact database, the physical card still serves a purpose as a reminder of that particular meeting and the circumstances around it. I know many people who immediately write the details of the interaction on the back of the card for future reference.
So do we really need them? My view is that while there are people who use them and value receiving them, we still need them. Will we need them forever? I believe we will eventually get to the point where the electronic exchange will be the norm and the physical card will not be required.
- What Makes a Unique Business Card Design? (brighthub.com)
- Has time been called on the Business Card? (insearchofcustomerservice.wordpress.com)
- Is the Business Card Dead? (news.slashdot.org)
- The business card still holds its own (theglobeandmail.com)
- LinkedIn Buys Business Card Converter CardMunch, Will Offer Its Services For Free (techcrunch.com)
- LinkedIn wants your business cards, acquires CardMunch (venturebeat.com)