We've all seen those cheesy real estate agent business cards that always seem to have a photograph of them next to their contact information. It's so common in this niche that you could practically make a template of what to expect. However, there are those custom die cut business cards with headshots that are actually done well such as the one pictured above.
So are headshots an effective method for connecting with customers, or are times changing? In this article, we've compiled a list of pros and cons for using your personal photo so that you can start understanding what you want to accomplish while keeping best practices for business card design in mind.
Are Headshots on Business Cards a Good Idea?
Having a headshot on your business card might seem like a great idea with only a few downsides, but some real estate agents and other professionals have been thinking twice before putting their face on their marketing materials. While these pros and cons may be specific to real estate agents, they apply to almost any type of industry where you deal with people face-to-face on a daily basis.
The Pros to Using Headshots
Seeing a person's face helps to develop a personal relationship and familiarity before the first meeting.
A customer who sees your face will not have the impression that they are working with a nameless, faceless organization. If other people say you have a "trustworthy" look in your headshot, it can absolutely be a good thing to include on a business card.
Recognizability increases with a headshot.
Using the same headshot on a number of different marketing materials can lead to people connecting what they see in other forms of advertising you already have going (billboards, website, ads, etc.) to the person they will be dealing with if they decide to go with you. When a customer sees the same headshot on a business card that they do when they drive past your billboard to work every day, their awareness in your brand increases, and you are associated with your respective field.
People connect with imagery.
Plain business cards are ineffective. However, despite this fact, most business cards are treated simply as a vehicle to convey contact information or office hours to those who may become customers. When a headshot is used, you take up a little bit of space, but it adds character and style to something that may otherwise be boring.
Word of caution, however: There may be other types of imagery that may be more effective than your headshot, so keep this in mind.
The Cons to Using Headshots
You run the risk of looking cheesy.
As stated before, sometimes those real estate agent headshots on business cards just look cheesy and overdone. What's the value when everyone else is doing it, especially if you don't want to do it well?
Growing your business may be difficult with a headshot.
When your business reaches a certain size, it becomes nearly impossible to work with everyone on the same kind of personal level that you could when you were only dealing with a few customers at a time. When you use a headshot in your advertisements, customers may expect that they'll be working with you rather than a partner or associate. In addition, you'll want to increase the awareness of your brand rather than your own reputation.
Should I Put My Face on My Business Card?
This isn't a yes or no type of question. It really depends on the individual, what they're comfortable with, and what their business goals are. While having a headshot on your business card can help facilitate a sense of trust between you as a professional and your customers, de-personalizing your marketing materials a little bit can still give customers the impression that they are dealing with a trusted company rather than an individual.
What is important to your industry and your niche market? Is there a way that you can more gracefully incorporate your headshot so that it's not cheesy?
Here at SilkCards, we work with real estate agents all the time to help them develop the highest quality marketing materials to fit with their brand and business goals. We even have a custom design service that can help you take you business card designs to the next level. Our ultimate goal is to have your business cards give you confidence every time you go out and get new clients. Get a free sample pack to see the stellar craftsmanship we offer.