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The Evolution Of The Business Card

The Evolution Of The Business CardIn our most recent On The Edge article—or should I say video—“Business Cards May Be On The Way Out,” Jeffrey Gitomer shares an anecdote about the changing face of business networking. He questions whether business cards are obsolete. Could they be replaced by the professional networking site LinkedIn?

It’s an interesting proposal. Afterall, the first thing I did when I got back from GAWDA’s Spring Management Conference this spring was to take the business cards I had gotten and looked the names up on LinkedIn. After that, I connected with a handful of others who I met but did not have business cards for. So I can see where he’s coming from.

Then again, business cards are evolving, too. On some business cards, we’re beginning to see QR (quick response) bar codes, that can be used to refer smartphone users to a website—it could even be a LinkedIn page. On the back of my business card, for example, is a code that directs users to my blog. This is a nice feature of QR codes: the ability to direct users to a long and complicated URL. Before, business cards were pretty much limited to a basic company website. Now, the possibilities are without limit.

Maybe rather than replacing them, LinkedIn is just simply raising the bar for business cards—challenging us to think differently about how to maximize the real estate of a 3.5” x 2” piece of paper. What do you think? Will LinkedIn make business cards obsolete?

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