Friday, June 01, 2012

Business Cards In The Digital Age

You have to ask yourself are business cards still a viable networking option in this digital age we live in. Almost everyone carries a smartphone with instant access to emails, phone numbers and even your website. So is it worth it to spend the money for graphics, printing and the hassle of carrying them around. Surprisingly this Geek is going to say yes, and the reasons why might surprise you a bit.

Personal Touch and Feel
With this digital lifestyle we all lead you might be surprised how, when properly executed and maximized, business cards can still be used as very effective tools for advertising your websites and services. Business cards add a bit more of a personal touch, a face if you will, for you and your company, one that just giving out your electronic information doesn't achieve.

Think of it this way, how many times have you added a contacts information only to forget who that person was, or what their company represented in the first place? With a properly executed business card you give your contacts a snapshot of who you are. Something they can look back on that will jog their memory of just why they wanted to reach out to you in the first place.

Low Cost and High Quality
The cost for business card printing has gone down, all while the quality of the cards and the graphics has gone up. Gone are those days when you had to pay a lot to get a decent looking card with just some basic information that just barely worked to inform your market that you exist. Nowadays, you can get high quality designs for relatively cheap. There are even websites that give them for free, although we suggest paying for your cards so you can add that personal look and feel.

Additionally if you have a nice business class printer you can quickly and easily print high quality cards in your own office. The quality of printers these days is exceptional allowing for many businesses to do their business card printing in office. You won’t have all the features available as you would if you paid for professional business card printing, but you also don’t have some of the requirements.

Always on Advertising
A business card is an “always on” advertisement. Unlike electronic contacts where they go into your phone or on your computer most people tend to keep business cards in a case on their desktop or another similarly easy to spot location. This means that while your contact information might be in their phone, it won’t be in their minds. Nor will it achieve placement that others might see it.

I often get business cards from people that I run into during my daily activities or at events and forget that I’ve had them and while looking through other items just happen to spot their card and have some work for them. This would rarely happen with an electronic contact. I’ve also had cards sitting on my desk when clients, friends or relatives pay a visit and have had them inquire about the card or company. This is something that just doesn’t happen with digital information.

It’s all in the Details
Every good businessman or marketer knows the details are key to the sale. Having the ability to hand a new contact a nice high quality card that looks presentable and attention-grabbing could mean the difference between grabbing a deal and ending up in the unknown folder. How often do you meet a new contact and give them all of your pertinent information at once? Rarely right!

With a good well designed card you can list almost anything and everything that that person needs to know about you and your company. Things like your blog and URL. Your e-mail address, phone numbers, cell phone number, fax number and even the physical address of the business. You can, and should, list the services you offer. If you are a painter you can have one of your own personal paintings scanned and printed on the business card. If you are a writer you might write some witticism. The possibilities are endless. Try that with a passing digital contact exchange.

Let’s face it almost every known businessman out there still uses business cards. So clearly having business cards printed just makes a bit of sense. I mean if it works for Donald Trump, Bill Gates and President Obama it should work for you!

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