Think about all of the networking events, trade shows, or conferences you have attended over time. Recall a likely familiar and recurring scene – everyone shaking hands and swapping business cards.
It’s easy to think that nowadays with so many ways to connect, people might just bypass the trading of business cards. After all, in our digital age where mobile Internet usage surpasses desktop more people are leveraging their phones to do business and establish connections. In lieu of the business cards, many professionals are going the digital route by plugging in new contacts on the spot in their smartphone or simply following them on their social networks.
However, business cards are here to stay. The proof is in the number of companies still making them.
There simply is no replacement for having a well-designed business card to that represents your brand and expertise. With 48% of event attendees saying that face-to-face interactions are more valuable today than two years ago, having a tangible business card to go with that firm handshake makes a more memorable impression – one that will last longer than a simple phone number swap.
In fact, here are four top reasons why printed business cards are still relevant in an ever-evolving technological era.
They Bring Attention to Your Brand
Your business card effectively conveys your brand, emphasizing your name, company logo, social media handles, and how to reach you. If you’re utilizing a two-sided business card, you have more real estate to showcase your expertise by listing your flagship products or services. It is a simple way to make a powerful impact during the first encounter.
Business cards help you build your business identity, and are far more effective and memorable than writing your email down or spouting out your number. A lot can be said on a small amount of space with good design and a little creativity. Show what makes you different from competitors. Including this content brings the WOW factor to your card and brand!
They Create a More Personal Experience
Having a tangible item present as your business card that someone can hold and feel truly creates a more personal experience. They are more likely to remember meeting you and have a more positive opinion about your brand. When both parties just insert a new contact in their phone, the interaction stops there. You each just walk away with another person added to your contact list. There’s nothing wrong with doing both – even better.
Yet, 58 percent of marketers believe that events and conferences are important ways to improve customer experiences of their services or products. Your business card enhances the moment by providing a physical item people can leave with. You can leverage these events and in-person encounters to your advantage. This doesn’t mean you can abort all other business-like protocols, such as making solid eye contact, smiling naturally, engaging at the right moments, and when the time is appropriate, giving your business card as a way to continue the relationship after or even during the event.
They Show That You’re Professional
A business card is a visual tool that touts your professionalism and your profession. Having your business card ready shows that you’re prepared, you’re serious about what you do, and have a keen interest in developing long-term relationships. Your encounters with others will have them viewing you as an expert in your industry, especially with a well-crafted business card. It will speak volumes on your behalf!
Think about the all of the times you met people, both with and without business cards. Didn’t it feel a little funny when someone said, “Oh, I don’t have a business card, but here, let me just give you my number.” So if you’re at a networking event, the airport lounge, or at the local coffee shop, show people that you’re ready to do business by having your card handy when the opportunity presents itself.
You Can Collect New Leads On the Spot
Another compelling reason why printed business cards are relevant today is that they position you to grow your leads list. Building your email list is the lifeline to your business. The beauty about leveraging business cards is that you can couple it with your digital strategy to achieve maximum success.
People are more apt to give you their contact info in exchange for your business card. Similar to generating leads online, we can agree that having a killer content offer that resonates with your audience increases the chances of growing your email subscribers. Your business card provides the same opportunity because it’s a valuable content piece that potentially offers a solution to your guest’s problem. They will gladly give their details in hopes that your brand will either be a useful resource or the answer they’ve been looking for.
With every business card you hand out, you bolster your lead generation and feed your sales funnel. You’re creating more opportunities to build relationships, increase your revenue, and foster repeat business.
Remember that your business card can be carried everywhere and passed around to increase exposure of your brand. It leaves a lasting impression and gives your people something visual to look at long after your first meeting with them. Furthermore, your cards can effectively drum up business when you least expect it. Don’t just hand out your card at business events. Give one to every person you meet.
Tactile engagement is much more effective in showcasing your professionalism, highlighting your brand, and creating memorable experiences. You’ll improve your digital strategy by collecting new leads and implementing them in your marketing plan.
Commit to using business cards a part of your marketing and face-to-face interactions. Don’t believe those who tell you business cards are no longer useful. You will find that top executives, thought leaders, and business owners throughout the country still use them. Don’t be that person at your next networking event who doesn’t have a business card. Even with a smartphone in hand to take down contact information, it’s just not the same.