Business cards were born in Europe in the seventeenth century. Prosperous aristocrats used them to announce their impending arrival into their local town or even others’ homes. This business card design was about the same size as a playing card and became a staple of high society.
Fast forward to today… Practically everything we do is digital — sending mail, signing contracts, sending proposals, attending meetings, even networking and happy hours! But the business card is one thing that the digital world cannot fully replace anytime soon.
A business card is a highly personal, highly tactile, form of marketing. Efficient business card design serves the fundamental purpose of marketing your business and getting your essential contact information into your target’s or client’s hand. All of this, this first impression and all of the information, in a matter of seconds. Fundamental to the business card is its portability.
Here are four reasons why the “old school” business card is still relevant — and why you should have a pocketful anytime you leave your home or office.
# 1 - Business cards are better for lasting relationships.
Networking is about making lasting, genuine, personal connections.
Swapping contact information digitally with someone is NOT.
Sending your contact information via digital means, like email or text, is convenient. But it is also extremely impersonal (and Emily Post would definitely say TACKY!).
Engaging in real conversation – WITH EYE CONTACT – is how true business relationships get started.
Two individuals with their faces buried in their phones texting away won’t create any significant memory of the encounter. You can quickly transfer the information from a business card to your cell phone after the conversation is finished.
# 2 - Business cards are still an effective direct marketing tool.
Email marketing, search engine optimization, and paid ads all do a great job attracting leads and prospects. However, these methods still aren’t as effective as an old-fashioned in-person meeting, bookended with handshakes and a business card exchange.
In the world today, you can encounter a potential lead or business contact at any time. Tradeshows, industry conferences, happy hours, airport lounges, and other events are all great examples. Having your business cards with you will ensure that you never miss an opportunity to make a valuable business connection.
Keep some in your pockets, cardholder, planner, wallet, money clip, purse, or bag so that the next time you meet someone, you are prepared to give them your contact information.
# 3 - Your business card design is the first impression of your brand.
When you meet a new person who could potentially be an ideal prospect or business connection, don’t you want him or her to walk away with a great first impression?
A memorable business card does a lot more than pass on an email address or phone number.
What should be included in a good business card design?
Your company name and logo
Your phone number(s)
Your email address (a professional email address)
Your physical address, if you have an office location
Your company message, tagline, or something other memorable information that can set your business apart
# 4 - They are the fastest “inexpensive” method of conveying your contact information.
The fundamental role of a business card is to share contact information with someone quickly.
When you meet with a new potential client or partner, for instance, you can leave your business card for them to use in a follow-up call or email.
Having a business card works much more quickly than writing your name and number down. Plus, you cut down on anyone misreading your chicken scratches!
And #5 (because we like to throw in something extra!)… Those “win a free lunch” draw boxes!
Let’s face it. Everyone loves a free lunch. Dropping your business card in those boxes is the easiest way to make sure you don’t miss out on an opportunity for a free burger.
And like we said above… You wouldn’t want your name to be drawn, to have the hostess think your “9” looks like a “4” and they can’t get in touch with you, right?
Does your business card need a refresh?
Give us a call today to discuss new business cards for your small business.
We promise we can make it nearly painless! Be sure to visit our portfolio to take a look at some of our work.
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