Going for the traditional business card seems outrageously old-fashioned and outdated, especially in this digital age. Many consider business cards a waste of money and hugely impractical, more so because nearly anything you want to know about a business is , or should, be available online. Sadly, only those who have ever used business cards smartly can fully appreciate their value, and those who have brushed aside their potential are missing out on key opportunities.
Here are 4 reasons why business cards still carry significance, and why no decent business should be without them:
- Business cards help build relationships.
People who have grown tried of mobile devices and the internet have observed that the technology that is supposed to bring people together is the same catalyst for being disconnected from one another. People who are supposed to “get together” but are instead buried in their mobile phones are suffering from the extremes of being social, and this is the same case when it comes to making business connections and networking. While sending your contact information via text or email is convenient, it reduces the interaction to nothing more than data sharing, and leaves nothing tangible to mark the encounter. Business cards help bridge this gap and makes the exchange more personal and memorable.
- Business cards are great for direct marketing.
Marketing and advertising campaigns all have the same goal of getting leads for business. While both are equally crucial to any business, they both rely on waiting for the lead or prospect to eventually take action. In face to face situations that can happen at any time – at tradeshows, conferences, or even while waiting for the bus – the interested prospect is already right in front of you, and business cards help transition the encounter from friendly chitchat to a real business opportunity.
- Business cards make great first impressions.
When conversing with a lead or prospect for the first time, any business person would make an effort to make a good, lasting impression. This is rather difficult to achieve, especially if everyone else is thinking the same thing. A skillfully crafted business card can spell all the difference. Keep in mind that business cards are an extension of your brand; it’s your prospect’s first taste of what your business has to offer, and they get to take it home with them.
- Having business cards mean that you are prepared.
In a networking opportunity, nothing is more embarrassing than being asked for your card and not being able to supply one. It would also be uncomfortable to be handed someone’s card and not be able to offer an exchange. These can be rather awkward and can lead to a number of negative perceptions about you or of your business.
Business cards still matter, but it’s also important to note that business cards will not get the job done on their own. Careful follow up with your prospects after the exchange is tantamount to building a relationship with them.