Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Virtual Business Cards

I had never heard of a “nameplate” site... until I read this article.

But it makes perfect sense. It’s a place where you can design a one-stop collection of links to things like your resume, your blog, your Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn identities, and so on. We all have sooooo many choices and options these days in social media. Each has a different, specific purpose; each connects with a slightly different audience, with different content.

Some of the articles I’ve read describe it as a “landing page” (airport metaphor—the place where someone “lands” in a plane to go to whatever a large city has to offer). Others call it a “web business card” (those 2” x 3.5” little bits of paper that people hand each other, with name, title, company, and various old-fashioned contact info—email, phone, fax). The word “nameplate” is also a metaphor (the little square of information that gets screwed onto your office door).

There are some very pretty examples at each of the five sites that the link above offers as poll-selected choices. Snappy graphics, clickable links, and so on. If you’re talented with the visual arts (as well as the verbal ones, English majors), these might offer you some interesting options.

So—here’s a way to help a potential employer find out more, without your having to list on physical paper a bunch of clunky web addresses that have to be hand-typed into a browser window. Someone can type your one address (most sites give you the option of using your name as the bulk of the address), and get clickable links to find out more. Some of the online services (most with a minimalist “free” option) also offer the opportunity to get a physical, printed business card to hand out to people in face-to-face discussions.

In fact, I guess I’ve had a “nameplate” site going for some time now, not quite knowing it's a concept—my self-designed Google page

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