When Lon Safko and I got through a substantial part of the Social Media Bible branding with our friends at MediaSauce in Carmel, Indiana, I started working on a business card design.  Got the first batch of trial cards ready for the last Ignite Phoenix and since then, with just a few tweaks, I think we have the design we’re going to move forward with.

image The story behind the design you see is that when we arrived at a point of what to list on the card, we wanted to make sure someone could connect to us in a conventional way – phone, email seemed to be pretty common – they made it on the card first.

Pretty soon, as social media people, we wanted our Twitter ID on the card.  Then we thought, well, we also want the Facebook ID, blog link… you see where this is going.

It was really soon after that thought that I realized there was no way we could get all the IDs listed for all the places we wanted to connect with people on the card; the card would get way too cluttered way too fast.

I looked at the back of the card, I’d seen plenty of two-sided cards before.  One of the things that is nice about a blank back though is that you have a place to make a note about the person or the meeting circumstances to prompt a memory.  I like a blank back that is not glossy so I can write things on it – the back could be breached if there was just no other way to get the information across – but not ready to do that yet.

I was thinking about this as I was browsing the web and I use the tab capability of my browser all the time.  One of the things you can put on your website is a small graphic image that shows up in the tab of a tabbed browser or in the URL.  There is a name for it too – a favicon.  Just a little tiny image, if you look up at the tab, or in the URL address bar you should see this graphic (SG_Initals_SM (2)) assuming your at my blog that is. That’s my social media avatar set as a favicon.

I saw the favicons of many of the services I use across the tabs and had the idea to just put the icon for each of the services along the bottom of the card… it gave me a lot cleaner look and, to the initiates in social media, they would know where to connect with me right away.

I tweeted the idea, looking for feedback and went ahead and produced the first version and gave them out at Ignite Phoenix.  A good response kept me on track and thus, this is the design we’ve settled on.

Since I produced and started using it, it’s also become a way to open a conversation and discover where they are in the social media journey.  They try to identify all the icons and only twice have I had all the icon identified, makes the conversation very lively and we always get to trade ID’s on one or more of the services.

What’s your tactic for conveying your social media presence to people you meet?