Are business cards dead? The answer, while it might surprise you, is no.
People create billions of business cards yearly in the United States. Why? Because they remain a useful tool for personally connecting with prospects, customers, clients, fellow business owners – and promoting your brand, despite advances in technology.
Technological advances, though, have proven beneficial. They’ve made it easy to order and receive your business cards for distribution quickly.
There’s another benefit, too.
Technology has also positively impacted business card design, making them more creative and impressive—in color, size, shape, and quality—for those receiving your company’s information.
You can use these benefits to your business’s advantage.
Below, we’ll further explore business cards and reasons why they’re still effective.
The Importance of Business Cards
Let’s first start with the purpose of business cards.
To understand why people use business cards, you must know what a business card is.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines a business card as, “a small card bearing information (such as name and address) about a business or business representative.”
From this definition alone, you know a business card is a concrete way of sharing your business information, such as your company name, address, telephone number, email address, and web address (URL) with others.
For you, though, these physical cards do more than present your contact information on paper. They also visually represent your company, displaying your brand’s identity and professionalism.
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7 Reasons Business Cards Are Still Effective Today
Business cards remain an important tool in a variety of industries, including:
- Legal & Professional services
- Hospitality and restaurants
- Real Estate
- Photography & Other Creative Fields
- Tattoo Shops
They can improve the legitimacy of brands, increase their brand awareness and improve their bottom-line.
Below, we further explain why the business card continues to live on for brands across all industries.
1. Not Everyone Owns a Smart Phone
Recent research shows 77% of Americans alone now own smartphones.
While this is a high percentage, not everyone owns a smartphone. And guess what? Many don’t want one. The reasons vary from no interest to no need for distractions, to low technology skills, to a preference for old-fashioned communication.
What does this mean for you?
You need traditional ways to convey your business contact information to these non-smartphone users.
With business cards, you conveniently do this. You make it easy for them to reach out to you after meeting, and possibly, refer you to someone in need of your products or services.
2. Business Cards Enhance the Legitimacy of a Business
Interested in knowing what people do before buying products and services from an unfamiliar company?
They verify the legitimacy of the business. And to verify, they look for concrete details:
- Who you are
- What you can do for them
- Where you’re located
- How to contact you
What better way, then, to introduce your business than by distributing business cards?
Professionally designed business cards can boost the legitimacy of your business in seconds. They let others know you’re serious and ready for business. They also build awareness of your business.
The likely result of enhanced legitimacy? Sales and referrals.
SILKCARDS Articles on Industries That Use Business Cards:
Facilitating the Networking Process
Business cards make networking more personable in the age of the smartphone.
3. They Help to Develop Human Connections
Connecting and exchanging information through digital channels is now easier and faster than ever. But, a downside exists: there’s no way to participate in true, trust building conversations with others. There’s no way to establish a personal connection.
This is a major problem when growing a business. Why? Because digital communication lacks several essential elements – small talk, interest, authenticity, eye contact, handshake.
Handing out your business card, though, is a good way to develop human connections. It gives you a way to continue the conversation with people interested in what you do. People you’ve already engaged through interesting small talk and eye contact.
Keep in mind; you shouldn’t pass out any card. You want an emotion-evoking business card. And the following features impact the emotions associated with your brand:
- Creativity and uniqueness
- Color and typography
- Quality and shape
- Spelling and grammar
SILKCARDS Articles on Business Card Etiquette
4. They Help to Facilitate the Networking Process
As a business owner, you’ve probably already heard the significance of developing relationships with professional contacts. And, there are several ways to network and connect with others, including face-to-face conversations, telephone calls, emails, social media communities.
However, high numbers of people prefer face-to-face interactions. Previous Forbes Insight research, for instance, found: 85% of their respondents preferred face-to-face meetings because of the ability to “build stronger, more meaningful relationships.” So, face-to-face interactions are beneficial in building a high-quality professional network. They’re appropriate for great conversations with people with similar interests, skill sets, and goals.
When attending in-person networking events, don’t forget your business cards. They make it easy for those interested in following up on these conversations to contact you. Likewise, their business cards give you the information you need to follow up and meet again.
As your network increases, you’ll also notice increases in business growth opportunities:
- More introductions and collaborations
- More clients
- More referrals
- More industry knowledge
SILKCARDS Articles on Using Business Cards to Network
Building A Brand Identity
Business cards are a key piece of your brand identity.
5. They Help to Build Your Brand
When you’re building your business, branding should be part of its long-term strategy. Here’s why it should: because it helps prospects and customers remember your business and your offerings.
Branding consists of visual identity aspects, and this includes your business cards. These physical items bring awareness to your business, through impactful design. They can also evoke emotions and build connections between you and your market – as mentioned above.
Altogether, they help you stand out while retaining and targeting customers – playing an effective role in the growth and success of your business.
6. They Give a Face to Your Brand
Business cards visually represent your business's identity. They give a face to your brand when good contacts look at them, reminding them of who you are and what you do.
When effectively designed, they communicate your brand’s message, personality, and values – positively influencing how recipients view your business.
The emotion evoking elements – referenced above – on your business cards also make your brand recognizable. Done correctly, they can convert interested prospects into paying customers, when they’re ready to purchase.
SILKCARDS Articles on Branding with Business Cards
Expanding Brand Reach
By customizing your business cards, you improve your brand's reach.
7. Creative Business Cards Are More Likely to Be Shared
Awareness is a major factor in business growth. When people know about your business, they’re more likely to buy your products or services.
Getting attention can be a challenge, but, creativity in marketing helps you expose your brand to your targeted audience and market.
The distribution of creative business cards is an amazing way to capture people’s attention. If your innovative cards impress the people who read them, then they’ll likely share with others.
This is good for two reasons: it furthers awareness of your brand, and it increases the chances of referrals to those most in need of your products and services.
Read Articles on Designing Creative Business Cards
Though online networking and promotional opportunities have increased significantly in this advanced digital age; business cards remain relevant in the growth of businesses.
And you know what?
These small cards are still important for all businesses. Their tangibility makes them useful objects for business owners interested in personal connections. Their tangibility also helps current and prospective customers remember your business when designed with creativity.
If you haven’t already considered the addition of business cards in your marketing toolbox, it's never too late to do so. You never know, your business card can be the key element you need to take your brand a little further.