Put your business card online with Vizify
(MoneyWatch) COMMENTARY Business cards aren't dead yet -- but there's little doubt that they're dying. An increasingly popular way to identify yourself in the Internet age is via a nameplate website. Sites like about.me give you a billboard-like page onto which you can post a photo, your bio, and some links to social networks like LinkedIn and Facebook. They're serviceable, in a utilitarian sort of way.
But it's time for a snazzy new nameplate site to come along that looks great and presents lots of biographical information in a cool and clever way -- something you can use to make a splash with clients, prospective employers, and anyone else who wants to learn more about you. In other words, it's time for Vizify.
When you first visit Vizify, you'll need to request an invite to sign up for the service (which is free). If your experience is anything like mine, you'll get your invite very quickly -- perhaps even the same day. I started using Vizify last week, and I am in love with it. (Check out my own Vizify site for a good sampling of what the site is capable of.)
The site uses an infographic style visual approach; it displays a handful of modules in the formm of connected circles, each one filled with some sort of factoid about you: Your current job title, where you live, your school, and so on. Click a circle to go to a page with additional information about that bio-blurb. It's visually attractive, and it packages information about you in a concise but expandable way.
Vizify builds your page automatically, based on data from social network sites (like LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter) that you grant it access to. You can further customize the information. For example, when I set up my site, Vizify grabbed a few links that I had entered into Facebook to represent "my links," but I rounded it out with a few additional ones as well. You can add, remove, and rearrange pages, and change some of the text in each.
I do wish the text were slightly more customizable, though. Most of the circle modules contain pre-canned title text that comes from the social media sites, which you can't change. For example, Vizify insists on announcing that I went to Central Michigan University (where I got a Masters) in the education circle, even though I would prefer to list my undergraduate alma mater (Rutgers University) instead.
And for a nameplate site, there are a couple of glaring omissions: A bio summary and -- especially -- contact information. My workaround was to point to the contact page of my personal website within the links circle. That works, but it is far from optimal. The folks at Vizify assure me, though, that a true contact info module is coming soon -- perhaps even this week.
Bottom line: Vizify is a great-looking nameplate site that looks snazzy enough to encourage people to spend more time learning about who you are and what you do. And really, that's the whole point of a site like this.
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