Tuesday, February 02, 2010
Why I still use business cards
I’m hearing more and more people express pride over the fact that they no longer carry business cards, and consider the rest of us archaic for doing so. That feels a little short-sighted to me.
Would the world be more efficient if business cards no longer existed? I doubt it. I still consider business cards an important part of my networking and follow-up process.
As a business card recipient, that little piece of thin cardboard is a reminder that I met you, a reminder to follow-up, and the fastest way possible to – in the moment when we’ve met, wherever that context may be – get your contact information for future follow-up. Sure, it might be nicer to just “bump” your iPhones and transfer the contact information. But then it’s too easy to forget to follow-up, forget that article I promised to send to you, etc.
In almost every context I can think of where I’ve met a new person, the last thing I want to do at that point is bury my nose in my laptop or smartphone and type someone’s complete contact information, plus any next steps or to-do’s based on that conversation. I can take care of that later, just grab a card and continue focusing on the individual, not their digits.
As a business card distributor, most of the world still asks for them. Yes, at technology events they might be waning in volume & impact. A little. But most of the rest of the world wants a card. If you don’t have one to give them, you’re missing out on any number of opportunities to network, get business or otherwise share mutually-beneficial information with that person – both now and down the road.
Do you still use business cards? Do you have an effective process for not only collecting and distributing them, but also processing them (the information and next steps) after you receive them?
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