Are Business Cards Useful Anymore?
19 Nov 2012
When I think of business cards, I think of the scene from American Psycho when Patrick Bateman sits at a conference table with his fellow stockbrokers. He slides his freshly printed card across the table for his colleagues to admire, only to be outshone by his nemesis’ watermarked card. It may seem ridiculous for successful businessmen to be that excited over business cards, especially in today’s technologically-advanced society. What good are business cards when you can look up LinkedIn profiles online? Actually, business cards can still be important part of your marketing strategy if they are creative and well-made. Whether it’s a sales call or business-to-business networking, the practice of swapping business cards is the most common way to make an introduction. The most effective way to remember people you’ve met is to keep their business cards. During conversations with them, you can even take notes on the back of the cards, such as a reminder about a future meeting. The exchange of business cards with potential customers and other leads is also a great method for breaking the ice in new relationships.
Business cards are useful because you never know when you will meet a potential client. Your business card is one thing you should never leave home without. For example, what if you are a chiropactor and happen to run into a neighbor at the grocery store who needs an adjustment? In this situation, it would be ideal to leave your business card with that person. Your business card should have all of your basic information, such as the name of your practice, title, address, your website’s URL, and phone number. To grab people’s attention, include a specific tag line or header that explains what you have to offer.
There should be multiple ways to contact you; cover all contact bases because some people might prefer to correspond through email, while some people like to initiate phone calls. Another helpful tip is to make space on your business cards to give prospects an enticing reason to call or visit, such as a special deal. All of this information should be produced in a color and font that are easy to read. While the information on business cards is fundamental, their appearance is crucial. Stock, design, and ink colors all matter. In terms of marketing yourself and your business, you want to stand out from your competition and give yourself an edge. There are many innovative ways to design your card, so make it look professional yet creative. Keep them in a case or in a protected pocket where they won’t get bent, marked up or scuffed. Lastly, think of you business cards as small advertisements with the potential to attract just the right people at the right time. Don’t be afraid to post your cards on public bulletin boards or leave them in bowls for free drawings where your target audience might see them. Ask affiliated businesses to allow you to display your cards. Just make sure you aren’t shoving them into unwilling hands.