Business Cards + Personal Brand

About 100 years ago, 2 technologies spread throughout the world that made business cards and personal branding important in the 20th Century: Automobiles and telephones. Throughout the 20th Century, cars made it evermore commonplace for people to travel long distances — especially to their daily workplaces. And it also became ever less important to meet in the same room, as communication was increasingly done via telephone.

Yet the business card and personal branding have pretty much run their course — they have become obsolete because new technologies have largely made them superfluous.

In a rather simple and straightforward manner, if you know someone’s name, then you don’t have to look up a telephone number — today, you can simply contact them directly via their name.

Yet even more importantly: Personal names and branding no longer matter very much. People and brands are — relatively speaking — ephemeral. The CEO of this company this year may very well be the CEO of that company next year, and companies themselves are also constantly being bought and sold. Unless you want to go with a brand with many centuries of legacy, you are best off finding the best product or the best service by searching by the type of product or service you are looking for. If you do not plan to stay at the Waldorf Astoria, you are better off searching for hotels in New York City.

What is odd, though, is that many people have not realized these changes. Indeed, perhaps more than 50% of all website registrations are registered to someones personal or brand name, and what is even funnier is that there is usually very little information available at such websites — often hardly anything other than the telephone number and street address! Perhaps — if you are lucky — you will find that the site states that the company offers “only the best” products and services. Although shocking, many businesses still do not have any website at all (and suggest that you go to a twitter or facebook page to interact).

In other words: These companies ask you to expose yourself to the NSA in order to reach out to them. This is indeed remarkable — almost ridiculous… but nonetheless in many cases it is actually still true! 8O

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