Are you asking yourself if you in this digital age were we live now should have a business card for your local business? Do they still add value to your brand? Well, if the question on your mind is “Should I have a business card?”, then this article is for you. I hope you enjoy it!
What is a Business Card?
Let’s start at the beginning. What exactly is a business card?
According to Wikipedia, business cards are cards bearing business information about a company or individual. A business card typically includes the giver’s name, company or business affiliation (usually with a logo) and contact information such as street addresses, telephone number(s), fax number, email addresses and website.
This is the information your customers need to contact you. And all that information contained in a simple card that fits perfectly in their wallet. Could we find a better reason than that? A business card reflects your brand and your products.
Business cards come in different sizes and dimensions. The Australian business cards standard size is 90 mm wide by 55 mm high. US cards are 3.5 in (89 mm) wide by 2 in (51 mm) high. Europe cards are mainly 85 mm wide by 55 mm high. The sizes vary in other countries. Look at this Infographic to learn the different variations in size if you are going to design one. But if you want to know if you should have a business card or not, then continue reading this article. I promise not to diverge from the focus anymore.
Do Business Cards Still Add Value To My Brand?
Business cards remain a crucial component of the branding strategy. Singularly, in some areas and within some age-groups, they have assumed pre-arranged communication. In other words, they are a handy form of advertising that adds value to our brand and can be given to anyone at any time.
Business communication has been developing and reshaping rapidly lately. Business processes change together with the newest technology, offering better and convenient communication strategies. Generally, when we meet a potential client or further contact, we add them to our phones and emails. But is this digital alternative networking experience the only one to follow in our days?
My answer is no! In brief, business cards still play a significant part in our business communications. Furthermore, it is not a little bit of nostalgia or old traditions. Business cards continue to add value to our business network experience.
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Why Business Cards Still Matter
First, it works anywhere and anytime when we need to exchange some pertinent contact information (at a BBQ gathering, a conference, a corner meeting, et cetera). Without wasting time, it allows us to give or receive information and establish an open face-to-face connection.
As a result, we are actually extending a powerful tool in our brand’s arsenal when we give our physical business cards. I know that we are particularly obsessed with the Internet and the latest ways to reach the online audience. We could, consequently, forget this easy and not expensive, but vital, physical promotion.
Incidentally, we all know that many business cards get lost or are tossed. But also are phone numbers and emails! We must then try to make our business card look and feel like a good friend to have around. Nowadays, business cards can be anything we want them to be – 3D, metal, classic, different formats or gadgets, et cetera. The creativity of its design depends on your industry, brand or personality. The standard rectangle time-honoured business card is still practical, easier to carry and less likely to be thrown away.
Make A Quick First Impression On Potential Clients
When I receive a business card, a lot about that company is revealed to me – Is the paper thick paper cardstock and the letterpress well printed? Is it embossed? Does it fit in my wallet? Does the quality of the card equate to the quality of the products they are selling? Thereby, you can see that your business card is not only paper with information but also an integral part of your branding and your digital marketing strategy.
Providing Accurate Information
Professional, well-designed business cards make your business referable and build trust to help you establish a warm personal relationship with your potential clients. Vital, essential items are:
- Your full name
- Credentials or professional designations
- Your title
- The name of your business
- Physical and website address
- Phone number
- Email address
Other information can be added, depending on your audience, such as fax number, picture, social media account, and so on. But remember that the standard business card size in Australia is only 90mm in width to 55mm in height. Therefore, not much space to add too much information. Thus, decide what is relevant to your audience. Likewise, two-sided cards are also an alternative that makes an impression and allows you to add more information.
Designing Your Business Card
Technology has made business cards quick nowadays. You might sign up for a printing account and select a style you like, fill in the blanks, order and you are set. Or you can print your own business cards with Microsoft Word, Google, Vistaprint or other providers using their templates. When you do that, you will be restricted to what they offer in terms of images, fonts, sizes, papers, and finishing options. You will be restricted, and so will be the possibilities to show up your business in the first impression on potential clients.
Remember that some providers just deliver what they are charging you – a $10 dollar business card, and only that. Keep in mind that a poor quality business card invariably implies a business with inferior quality products or services, whether they are or not. If there is one thing we do not want is to have a business card that is likely to keep prospective customers away.
Cheaper cards do not have your real logo, colours might not match your website/brand, and their styles are shareable to anybody. I have already seen two companies using the same business card template in the same event. A professional graphic designer will help you incorporate your business in the card layout to evoke trust.
In short, your card should be special, unique and memorable to add value to your brand. Consequently, it will allow your potential customer to find it among the hundreds they might have easily. It is not difficult to have a fantastic card that is affordable for your business, as a rule.
Cards Are To Be Distributed
One significant action is to distribute them to make an excellent first impression on potential clients. Primarily, it is no good to have a box full of great cards just sitting there accumulating dusty cobwebs. Therefore, ‘use’ them, or you might ‘lose’ your business.
By the way, have a supply of cards wherever you go and give them out when appropriate. You might be surprised at the results and referrals this could bring.
Don't Order In Bulk
Usually, ordering 100 or 250 cards will be plenty. Do not be sucked into ordering in bulk. It is almost sure that you will have to modify something before the last one is handed out.
A Valuable Resource
As a valuable resource in itself, the business card could have additions that would make an individual want to keep it. Remember the old calendar cards we used to have in the past? Didn’t we keep them in our wallets the whole year? And every time we checked the calendar, we were reminded of the brand plus the benefits and solutions we had found in that connection—that added value to the card’s business, encouraging us to return.
When you hand out the card, don’t just give it. Make your action reveal definitive ways you can help that person. Make it personal. Specificity and sincerity will go a long way and have a notable impact. That person will collect a touch base that might be useful in the future. And you might be in business!
I tried to show you the true value of a business card and I hope I helped you answer that question. Should I have a business card? Surely you should. The contact details revealed in the printed card will be an effective tool to drive clients and building a solid relationship with them. It is important to carry your business on a card.
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