I'm AWED, literally AWED when I see people pull out their folder and in it every business card is organized and logged with information of when they came in contact with those people, etc. These are SUPER organized people who deserve a medal and an brain scan, LOL. Ok, I'm just kidding!
Any way! The above mentioned people would have a fit if they saw my system for filing business cards. Stack after stack after stack is wrapped in rubber bands and placed in various locations in my office. When the mood strikes me, I hand a stack to one of the kids or the hubby (who tries to look busy but I know he's doing nothing important) and ask them to create an excel based email list for my future use.
Those business card scanners never really appealed to me. Well, now with my mobile phone, I think I could be a reformed & organized business card owner. There are a few apps out there for iphones and other smartphones that could make life easier for people like me (assuming we want to make it easier).
So let's take a look at this really "cool" business card app called CamCard for most mobile phones. It scans cards in 12 languages and allows you to edit the card's image. Basically, you open the app, take a photo of the business card and stores it in a card holder that you can sort by name. You can search for a particular card too. CamCard costs a mere $7 and comes with a "lite" version which is free. The lite version scans and stores fewer cards but can still be useful to you if you don't want to spend the $7.
Two other apps that are worth mentioning are WorldCard Mobile which costs $6 and ScanBizCards which costs $7. Both are for iphones.
I'm waiting for the day when there are no business cards at all and an electronic chip inserted into my arm can beam information right into the other person's mobile device (and vice versa)! You're laughing but I'm telling you, it's coming soon……
Here's another iPhone application that is genius! If you are selling at remote locations and find that people don't carry cash and want to pay you by credit cards, this is an app for you.
Meet iphone app, Square which allows you to accept credit card payments through your iphone! All you have to do is type in the total amount, slide the customer's credit card through a small SQUARE device that plugs into the iphone's earplug hole, ask the customer to sign using their fingers, and voila! You've just made a sale by accepting a credit card. And customers can be emailed a receipt later on.
Square is use-friendly and easy to use for even people who are not technology savvy. Amazing eh?
I'm no developer but I keep track of all these cool technology things that are happening around me. Well, I just read about a do-it-yourself iphone app platform called Bizness Apps.They launched an app feature recently using which businesses can create their own check-in coupons using their iphone app. It would be similar to foursquare where you can check into a particular location and unlock coupons created by that business. Business owners can completely customize the coupons and edit them real time.
It works like this. When you check into a business location, you receive a reward coupon for your various check-ins. So you can get rewarded for your 10th, 25th, 200th, whatever check-in and this is customized by each business so different businesses may have different rewards created. The coupons show up as an image in the iphone app and are deleted when used by the business owner who issued the coupon in the first place. No need for clipping coupons or remembering coupon codes.
These coupons are simple, efficient, cost-effective and allow businesses to show build brand loyalty with customers by rewarding them as often as possible. And you know how viral marketing works so you know that once a person sees the value, the word will spread to his or her network of family and friends and the next thing you know, the business will gain new customers from such a simple app.
Business owners can create their coupons very easily. You basically create a free account and begin creating your application and have something ready in 20-30 minutes. Once it's ready, you'll have to pay to launch it in the itunes app store and you pay Bizness Apps $39 per month for hosting and maintenance of the iphone application you just created.
iphone applications are simply genius. They allow people to immediately connect with others using their respective iphones, engage with others, and essentially simplify things that are so mainstream to us currently but when looked through the iphone look cumbersome and archaic.
Not using a smart-phone yet? Perhaps some of these blog-bites may help you make your decision to begin using one or upgrade to a more popular one….(remember, these are not facts researched by me, just reported by me from all I read about this industry that I play and work in).
- Most popular smart-phone: iphone (no-brainer, eh?)
- How does the Android compare to the iphone in terms of popularity? Growing but not there yet – 29% compared to iphone's 69% popularity
- Bathroom smartphone usage – over 50% of users confess to using their smartphones while in the potty. Hmmm, sounds low doesn't it? LOL
- Two biggest frustrations faced by mobile phone users? Connectivity (wi-fi access) and ability to print something using their smartphones. (I don't have a problem with connectivity and I've never felt the need to print anything from my smart phone of alll things, so not sure who these people were talking to when they did this study)
Here are some other "not-researched but created by Nipa Shah" factoids for your reading pleasure:
- Smartphones allow us to LOOK important and busy even when we're doing nothing
- Smartphones are the best way to keep boredom away cause you can always find an app to fiddle with
- Smartphones help us hide when we don't want to talk to someone at a party (and masks our anti-social behavior too)
So get a smartphone and look important, get rid of boredom, keeps company when in the potty, and oh yeah, wins you brownie points when you respond to your boss's email at 1 am. 😀
I went out and got a new Blackberry this past week. And I swear that there is not a better toy out there. What CAN'T I do with my Blackberry???
Two Email Boxes? Check
Three Email Boxes? Check
Text Messages: Check
Not to mention, music, alarm clock, calendar, web browsing, you name it, my blackberry does it.
People, let me tell you that with m new Blackberry, I don't need anything else! My new slogan: Have Blackbery, will travel!!!
Smartphones, smartphones, smartphones. That's what's hot!!!
Smartphone users are using their mobile browsers to network on Facebook and Twitter. ComScore, a web metric reporting firm reported that there was an 8 percent jump in the usage of social networks using Smartphones in January 2010.
Facebook access through a mobile browser jumped to 112% and Twitter saw a 347% increase in mobile browser based access when compared to previous year's usage.
Now although Mark Donovan, senior VP of mobile at ComScore, thinks that this jump is attributed to the fact that since mobile users are constantly in touch with their network via phone, text, and email, networking on social networks is a natural next step.
See, now that's where I think differently. It's not just that people communicate with their circle of friends using mobile phones more and more. I think it's happening because smartphones are a great time-filler. I mean have you of late found yourself getting annoyed when someone's late? Instead, don't you just breathe a sigh of relief and think "oh, thank god, now I can go tweet"?
I know what I do when someone's late; I whip out my smartphone and first I check email, then I log on to my yahoo chat, then I go visit Twitter to read and tweet. The next thing I know, my late appointment shows up and all the fun ends. LOL