Why Business Cards Still Matter
Everything we do in business today is digital — sending mail, signing contracts, attending meetings, even networking. The business card is one thing that digital will not fully replace anytime soon.
Here are five reasons why the old school business card is still important — and why you should have a pocket full of them at all times.
1. Swapping contact information digitally is impersonal.
Networking is about making genuine connections. Sending contact information via text or email on the spot is convenient but it is also extremely impersonal. Engaging in eye contact and actual conversation is how real relationships begin.
Related: 9 Clever Business Cards You’d Want In Your Wallet
Two individuals with their heads buried in their phones typing away won’t create any kind of significant memory of the encounter. You can easily transfer the information from a business card to your mobile device after the conversation.
2. They are the most effective direct marketing tools.
Email marketing, search engine optimization and paid media all do a great job of attracting leads and prospects, but they still aren’t as effective as an in-person meeting sealed with a handshake along with a business card exchange.
You can encounter a potential lead or contact at any time — tradeshows, industry conferences, happy hour, airport lounges — and arming yourself with business cards at all times will ensure that you never miss an opportunity to make a valuable business connection. Keep some in your pockets, wallet, money clip or laptop bag so the next time you encounter a prospect you are prepared.
3. A business card is the first impression of your brand.
When you meet someone that could potentially be a great prospect or connection, don’t you want him or her to walk away with a great first impression? A memorable business card does a lot more than just pass on an email address or phone number.
When I make a connection via my business card, I don’t want my brand associated with the word cheap. A retail store trying to make a great first impression wouldn’t create a storefront sign with a piece of cardboard and a Sharpie. I have that same mentality when it comes to my business cards.
They make a great first impression and they also act as a great icebreaker. I have never once had a conversation end after handing over my business card. A unique business card will actually fuel the conversation even further.