Capture Business Contact Info Quickly With CardScan

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Here's the answer to organizing your business cards that doesn't involve binders or rotary files cluttering up your desk.

What do you do with all those business cards you pick up at conferences, seminars and meetings? You know, the ones you want to keep – the ones you carefully write notes on so you remember why you wanted to save the card and what to say when you contact the person next week?

Do you enter all the contact information into contact management software as soon as you get back to the office so you can find it next week – or next month or three months from now? Or do you stuff the most important cards in a corner of your wallet, and then throw the rest into a desk drawer, umm, temporarily?

If you’ve got a drawer full of business cards or stacks of business cards rubber-banded together somewhere – or if you hate taking the time to type up all that contact info you pick up – CardScan Executive is a product you’ll find indispensible.



CardScan Executive, for those of you unfamiliar with it, consists of a small scanning device which is dedicated to scanning business cards and software that not only reads the scanned information, but also lets you view scanned images of the fronts and backs of business cards, categorize the data, and add notes about individual cards.

As the video above (shot in my office) shows, scanning cards is quick and easy. In fact, it’s so easy, you could scan a bunch of cards while you’re talking on the phone, or reading your email. In fact, you can copy contact information out of email directly into the CardScan software.

The fast scanning capability is just one of the features that make this a product worth owning. More impressive than the small size of the scanner and the speed with which business cards can be scanned is the functionality of the software. The software is able in almost all cases to pick out the contact’s first and last name, the company name, the land and mobile phone numbers and the website address and put them in the correct fields in the CardScan contact database. That’s quite a feat when you think about all the different places on a business card people put their information – and all the different fonts they use. Character recognition is excellent, too, especially on traditional typefaces.

If the scanner doesn’t correctly read information (note to designers: stop using pale grey type on white background cards), you can quickly edit the information – even if you threw out the original card before you proofed the scans. The reason: CardScan captures an image of the card itself and displays it in the summary view.

There’s more that CardScan does, too – like allowing you to categorize leads. You can categorize them by standard built in categories such as business or entertainment. Or you can create custom categories, such as GiftShow2008 Leads.

Finding contacts after you enter them is equally fast and efficient. You can search by any of a number of fields, including those special categories you set up.

CardScan is available at retail office supply stores, or online.

© 2008 Attard Communications, Inc.

About the author:
Janet Attard is the founder of the award-winning  Business Know-How small business web site and information resource. Janet is also the author of The Home Office And Small Business Answer Book and of Business Know-How: An Operational Guide For Home-Based and Micro-Sized Businesses with Limited Budgets.  Follow Janet on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/JanetAttard.

 
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