Why Business Cards Are Still Powerful In The Digital Age
Never Underestimate the Power of the Business Card
When I attended my first Women and Business in Lompoc meeting years ago, I accepted many business cards which were gently placed in my hand from several business entrepreneurs in the small central coast California town I’d recently moved to. I responded the next day to one, from a sales representative with a business that printed cards, memo pads and calendars for businesses nationwide. Now online, if you contacted this company, you could design your own cards, choose colors and icons, fonts and special effects out of a plethora of choices offered.
The cost? Free, you only paid for shipping. I reordered several times with different business names, locations, new phone numbers and revised URL addresses. Without word one from me, I wanted my cards to say something about me and my service (which was contracting myself out as an administrative assisting service). I had a love for horses, owning one for several years, and fashioned an icon that emphasized muscled legs, hooves digging into the earth, galloping madly down a busy city street. I wanted to represent my service as being strong (any size workload) fast (every deadline met) and high-end but willing to work for blue collar clients (dirt road running down 5th Avenue). The colors were bright displaying energy. The font was Comic Sans that looked cool and current. This was a personification of how I saw myself and ran my business.
It’s the age of social networking. Many businesses are dumping their cards for digital promotions But the experience of holding in your hand a piece of a company with all the important information indelibly printed on quality card stock, with perhaps something personal scrawled on the blank side is impossible to clone with a website address.
There are a list of five (5) reasons to be pro-cards. They are personal, they include a handshake, they set the mood for your brand, they show serious preparedness, and they continue to market your service or product by being handed off to another person.
They also go further than just a reminder about your service or product to the original incipient client–they can be used as a reward system for repeat client use of your services, such as the basic “five cups of coffee gets you a free cup”. Clients don’t have to sift through a website design and various links they are unfamiliar with to get to the heart of what you can provide for them. There is no “down time” for a business card in case batteries go out on cell phones or service is temporarily unavailable. Finally, there are more and more consumers living “off the grid” without information devices How will you reach them?
Perhaps the most important use for cards is that it is a way into the business you are calling on It is proof that you are an authentic member of an organization that operates successfully and can be contacted at any time for business.