Are Business Cards Necessary
As a business person, I have first hand experienced the importance and necessity of business cards.
Business cards, those little humble rectangles of cards are very important and necessary and have been around for centuries. While many believe the London upper class first used them as calling cards to announce an intention to meet another individual, others believe it was first used by the Japanese. And that shaped the formality and the effectiveness of business cards in connecting people in today’s business world.
Today everyone’s personal details can be found online and there are an abundance of networking platforms online so you could be forgiven for wondering about the practicality of business cards and its importance to your business.
Are Business Cards Important?
Business cards are as relevant in business today as they were in the 17th century and are a must have for your business irrespective of whether it is an older establishment, a recent start-up or one you are still in the process of setting up. It can be used by anyone be they creatives , managers and C-level executives. They typically contain pertinent details about you and your business; your contact details, skills, where the business is located and a brief description of what the business is about.
With all of the talk about the importance of properly marketing your product or service, it’s important not to overlook the most valuable commodity of all: yourself. Just as that beautiful looking flyer attracts the right type of attention for your product, a business card is designed to do the same for both your professional image and your career as a whole.
Business card designs are each unique, memorable and special, carrying within them your essence, personality and your business’s identity. If gotten right, a business card design can really connect you and your business to your target audience. This means you need to devote the time to doing them well.
Why is A Business Card Important
The importance of business cards to your business cannot be overemphasized. A good business card creates an image of professionalism, credibility and loyalty – all of which are important items in the lists of criteria the potential clients consider when making their decisions.
Here are the reasons why a business card is important and also an effective business tool
1- FIRST IMPRESSIONS
First impressions matter a lot and most times there is rarely another chance for a second one, especially in the world of networking and business. Your business card is an inanimate representation of you, your personality and your business. It is important to keep your business cards clean and clear to make a good first impression. It is advisable to make it attention grabbing but light on the eyes. Prospective clients are more likely to hold onto a color-filled business card a full ten times longer than they will a standard white card, as color also increases the impact of engagement and a person’s ability to follow simple directions.
Approximately seventy-two percent of people say that they judge the company or brand that a person works for based on the quality of their business card. Similarly, thirty-nine percent of those who responded to a survey said that they would choose NOT to do business with someone if they had a “cheap-looking” business card.
A good business card will not only contain one’s name and contact details. It should also mention what that person’s skills are. This extra detail makes a difference in the world. The person who receives your business card may have no need of you, your skills and your business but he may know someone within his own network or circle of influence who does.
Chance encounters happen between people all the time, you must prepare to take advantage of these and the opportunities that are born from them.
The littlest things we do send out the biggest messages.
Having something as simple as your business card ready at networking events and meetings is indicative that you took the time to actually put your information in a card. It shows that you are a well-prepared and focused businessman. It implies that you are ready and confident to put your name and your brand out there.
Business cards are a highly personal form of marketing, getting your key contact information into the hands of your client in a matter of seconds.
Intrinsic to the value of the business card, is its portability. Wherever you go – they go, making it easy to take them with you if your work involves travelling, or whether you frequent trade shows and conventions. The accessibility and convenience of reaching for your contact information increases the probability of clients contacting you.
5- DIRECT EXCHANGE OF CONTACTS
In this era, when you meet someone with whom you developed an immediate rapport you can follow up on him and give him a chance to follow up on you by collecting his contact details with your phone and imputing yours into his phone. However, there may be instances where you meet someone who is not technologically savvy or is not comfortable using them. This is where your business card comes in. Professionals are more likely to call you back if the way you give out your card and introduce yourself shows sincerity.
6- COST EFFECTIVE BRAND BUILDERS
The humble business card as a personal marketing tool is most definitely a low cost, high benefit marketing strategy and should be utilised for its many benefits.
Business cards are brand establishments that help make your business more recognisable. The key details you include on a business card – your name, logo, tag line, contact details and social media icons – set against a design of your choice can create your company’s identity and reinforce your brand with everyone who sees it.
7- LEAD GENERATORS
Exchanging business cards in person is one of the most direct and effective ways of introducing yourself to and opening a conversation with people. A business card can create an opportunity out of nothing. That opportunity may be a great business partnership, a new lead, or establishing meaningful contact. When talking to a prospective client, you can introduce yourself, what you or your business does and hand over contact information without fumbling around for a pen.
Excellent networking for your small business or small business ideas is all about making meaningful connections, and in today’s hi-tech world of social media and smartphones, there is no substitute for the personal touch the business card brings.
This is what people will remember.
What do you think about the importance of business cards? Do you have more contributions to the importance of business cards? Let us know in the comments section below.
Image source- Unsplash.com