Is the Business Card Dying (Or Evolving?)

Yesterday, I stopped by The Roger Smith Hotel, a favorite Manhattan gathering spot for individuals interested in social media. I was there to meet Pam Slim, author of Escape from Cubicle Nation and Jonathan Fields, author of Career Renegade. Jonathan and Pam had joined forces to present a workshop for emerging entrepreneurs. They did not disappoint–even in late afternoon, their energy was palpable–and clearly contagious for those who had attended the workshop. Business_card

As is standard practice at such gatherings, business cards were exchanged.
And I began to hear a common refrain–one that I've heard frequently in the last 15 months:

"How can I find you on LinkedIn?
What is your Twitter handle?
Is this information on your business card?"

I recognize that this group may not be representative of the general public–after all, these individuals had all signed up to spend a day with two entrepreneurs known for their tech savvy, but the questions about social media URLs on business cards are becoming common.

As a result, I'm beginning to wonder if the traditional business card is dying. Is it only a matter of time before LinkedIn profile URLs become a standard field on the corporate business card?
(I don't necessarily see this future for Twitter–outside of PR, marketing, and advertising related fields–but I can definitely foresee this change for LinkedIn.)

I have yet to add social media URLs to my own business card, but I do plan on making this modification when my current supply runs out. In the interim, I've implemented a temporary "green" solution: My LinkedIn profile URL is now a permanent part of my e-mail signature, I've created a new paperless profile, and I've provided additional contact information through a customized background on Twitter.

While connections are never as good on screen or paper as they are in person, I think providing these additional channels for connectivity represents the evolving future of the "business card" exchange. These are my theories–and action steps–regarding this subject.

What are your thoughts, and how can I help you with your personal marketing plan?

To Your Success,

This entry was posted in Networking & Career Management, Personal Branding & Marketing, Social Media for Job Search, Trends & Short Cuts. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Is the Business Card Dying (Or Evolving?)

  1. Dan Erwin says:

    Intriguing notion. Yet, when I’m with a potential client and that person has expressed interest, I usually ask for their card toward the end of the conversation. They nearly always have one.
    But as you suggest,the URL seems to be a natural. I have my website on my card, but I suspect my blogsite will be of more value. I’m thinking about changing cards when these run out.
    As an aside, I don’t buy many cards at a time, even though I spend big bucks on the few. Seems like there’s always a needed change based on the new networking and media.

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