Colliding With The Social Web

Are Business Cards Dead?

Every once in a while, I’ll stumble upon an online discussion debating the value of business cards.

Often people wonder if they are still of value, given the prolific use of email and online social and professional networks. After all, in a world of smartphone apps that wirelessly transfer contact information, plus online profiles, company websites, and scannable badges — how can a plain old paper business card compete? And who wants to carry those things around, when you’re going to end up sending them an e-mail or typing their info into a contact database, anyway?

So, “Is the business card dead?”

Well, regardless of how you incorporate modern technology, a business card is a personal and professional introduction to someone that you cannot obtain simply by email or digitally reaching out.

Sharing a business card is up there with the handshake and verbal introduction as essential elements to building a positive impression and starting a business relationship.

Would you ever say the art of a handshake is dead?

Or the art of introducing yourself?

Or how you dress?

Though we rarely teach these things anymore, it does not mean they are any less relevant to how we communicate and interact. If executed correctly, you position yourself to leave a powerful impression on the people you are meeting. If executed incorrectly, your relationship could either get off to a horrible start or no start at all.

What is your perspective on using business cards? Are they passé? Or do you still find them essential to building a successful first impression? And what information should government contractors (especially small businesses) have on their business cards? Please submit your comment below.

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