Many years ago I thought the business cards were condemned to disappear, then I decided to start making my own private collection, not for the future economic value that could reach, but for the sentimental value that would provide me over the years. Of all the collections I have begun, it is the only one that I still continue maintaining and increasing.
Without going further, during my last visit to Mobile World Congress, MWC 2016, The year of IoT and VR , I have distributed dozens of several of my current business cards while my collection has fattened by receiving near a hundred of new cards from old and new friends and colleagues. In this post you can read 5 reasons to collect business cards at events.
Business cards history stretching back over 500 years – originating in China before being adopted by European aristocrats leaving cards to mark their visits in the 17th century – some say the business card is now on the way out, with younger workers preferring to connect on LinkedIn or exchange Twitter handles. But, if you are an entrepreneur or small business, here are seven reasons why you should still bother to get business cards printed.
“A business cards provide tangible information for others. A business card not only is the first impression of your brand, it is the first impression of you.”
My professional life in business cards
At least once a year, I review my business cards collection. I remove duplicates, I order business cards by company and I start a new year collection. For almost one hour I remember my professional life, with some moments for nostalgic when reviewing my own business cards.
I still remember how proud I was of my first business card. How many excellent companies, good and not so good bosses, amazing roles, many friends, and finally my dream CEO and founder of my own company.
The title of your business card matter, it is a fact
Does your job title matter anymore? Based on my own experience, I have to say resounding answer is YES. We love the pompous positions that give envy those who know us and allow us to interact with those who do not know us.
Whether if you work or as if you search for a Management, Sales, Marketing or Technical job, the title of your business cards can still open doors, facilitate meetings or add more chances to be called by a Recruiter.
So it’s not just that we like to show off, business cards are a sales and a promotional tool. But companies should take care to give positions to their employees, if almost everyone is C-Level executive, VP, Director or Senior Manager but have to do the tasks of a junior employee frustration is huge.
The titles of our business cards can facilitate our work, but it can also pose a heavyweight and a responsibility that can distress us. If we all agree, that the title in our business card can open doors and can facilitate meeting with peers, it is also true that unless we are able to meet the expectations of the title will be doing us a great disservice to our company and ourselves.
New Internet of Things titles on your business card
We all know that the Internet of Things (IoT) is hot and should not surprise that the hottest skills in 2016 will be related with this market.
It is still early to understand the responsibilities of all new job titles that the Internet of Things is creating. We are seeing how companies and recruiters search for positions like VP IoT Sales, IOT Strategic Partnerships, IoT Sales Manager , BDM IoT, Director IoT Platform, VP IoT Product, Head of IoT, Chief IOT Officer (CIoTO), Chief Location Officer, IoT Analytics Consultant, IoT Security Officer, IoT Developer, and many more. It is funny how many company have replaced M2M by IoT or have added the word IoT of their positions.
If you have read “Welcome to the first “Selling IoT” Master Class!”, add a new advice, your title and company in your business card are very important.
The internet of the connected business cards
Although I have criticized in “The abuse of shocking headlines in IoT or how many stupid things will be connected ?” the use of catchy headlines of Internet of Things, I could not resist use it in this paragraph. Should I add this post in my list of Silly IoT headlines?
Digital devices, such as smartphones doesn’t necessarily make it any easier or faster to give someone your business contact information.
I am happy that I did not find connected business cards among any of the 9 Everyday Items We Never Want to Have Connected to the Internet.
The idea of Connected business cards is not new neither original. MOO offer a high quality printed Business Cards, embedded with an NFC chip that triggers digital Actions. With one tap of a Business Card+ (against an NFC enabled device), you can display your chosen information – like your website, or online shop or downloadable app. The company allow add easily a QR code in business cards,
Kipyou allow create a connected business card for free and gather all your information on a single platform. You can Integrate all your contacts information, profiles on social network and documents on your KipYou card to share easily what really defines you.
Some years ago while attending a trade show, Jamie Cubeta from eConnectedcard has same vision than me, but he executed while for me was just another idea.
Let’s consider connected business card as another wearable that can be integrated into corporate branding, lead generation, marketing, sales and field services business processes.
What should be the main characteristics connected business cards?
- Device – The International Card Manufacturers Association (ICMA) should serve the dynamic connected business card industry and the various companies and organizations involved in manufacturing and personalizing these connected business cards.Curve Screen
- Connectivity – Bluetooth Low Energy(LE) (also called Bluetooth Smart or Version 4.0+ of the Bluetooth specification) is the power- and application-friendly version of Bluetooth that was built for the Internet of Things (IoT). Low-power Wi-Fi for some services.
- Batteries – rechargeable solid state batteries combined with ambient energy harvesting or wireless charging
- Cloud IoT Platform – We can help to select the most suitable. Take a look at my post It is an IoT Platform, stupid !.
- Wearable App – Smartphone App – Web App – Touch-friendly experience. Biometric security. Voice recognition when connected by low-power Wi-FI.
- Analytics – Customizable dashboard. Cloud Analytics applications.
- Search functionality
- Integration with Professional Social Network and Messaging Platforms
- Business Model – Connected business card service provider. Pay as you use and as you profit.
You might think that will be so expensive that there will be no business plan that supports it. But let’s predict the future, in 2025 the prices of sensors, connectivity and even software development will be reduced 4 times and humanity will have passed the umpteenth crisis, and finally we will have a long prosperity.
Not everyone thinks business cards are essential, and some argue business cards have lost their edge. Ilya Pozin, writer for Forbes and Inc., describes a shift he’s seen on his LinkedIn Blog.
I disagree with Ilya. I expect to see in a few years the adoption of connected business cards, but meanwhile quite possibly companies will continue giving us traditional business cards – like the e-book is not finished with the book on paper – and we continue obsessed about the title on our printed business cards because we know the title will help us in performing our role.
I wish my collection will continue growing, hopefully with new IoT titles and companies.
“Do not say goodbye to the printed business card anytime soon but be prepared for the new opportunities with connected business cards.”
If someone else believes the connected business card is a brilliant idea and profitable business, let me know. Will love this time to execute not only imagine one more of my multiple ideas.
Originally appeared on LinkedIn.