Are Business Cards Going Away?
In a world of technological advancements, the ancient yet effective business card is still around. How come?
Perhaps most people (if not everyone) in your world may have access to the internet and know how to use it. But do all of your prospective customers live in that same world? How many potential customers do not? What’s the potential revenue versus cost look like? Will they remember your website from a single conversation? These, among others, are some of the questions you may ask yourself as an entrepreneur or business entity regarding a business card. There was a time where people’s pockets, bags, or wallets contained numerous business cards and they were indeed useful. It’s how I called my barber for my first appointment, the plumber to fix the sink, and the local Colombian bakery when I needed catering for a party. Nowadays, studies are indicating a large number of people refuse to even take them in the first place or throw them out within seconds after the initial interaction. However, what about those who keep them? Let's dive deep into this.
First, let’s establish what an attractive business card contains. You want to ensure your business card includes the most primitive information of the business; a logo, the slogan, contact information, services offered, and where it’s located if there’s a physical address. The next phase is the personalization of the card. You just spent a couple of minutes illustrating your business to the customer, the services you offer, and who you are within the entity and you hand the card and leave. In your card, you’ve covered the business portion already but, now you need to ensure your piece of the puzzle is included. You want to include your name, your title, and a way to contact you. This ensures the customer has all the information about yourself and/or the business at their disposal.
An attractive business card, the ones not tossed, open a bridge between your entity and the customer that could be used at any moment. In college, after failing to get old-school business owners to get a website, I would offer the service of designing and making them business cards. To ensure the experience was swift and easy, I would have the business owners text me all the information I needed about the business and/or themselves and I would design the business card using various designing tools. In the beginning, it would take me a few hours to provide them the first draft, and quite frankly, they were disastrous. After texting them an image of the design, most of the time, I would get long paragraphs back ripping my design apart. But, as Aristotle once said, “Criticism is something we can avoid easily by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.” Quite frankly I didn’t mind constructive criticism. As time went by, I became an artist who created beautiful and precise business cards within minutes. On the other hand, once the cards were approved for production, I would reach out to companies to mass-produce the business cards based on my design. I would pay these third party companies for the mass-produced business cards and I would charge the customers an extra amount of the cost and that became my profit. The profit margin might’ve been low but the high volume of interest made up for it. Besides, because of the high volume orders, the third-party companies who mass-produced my designs would offer me discounts on the cost— Increasing my profit margin.
Essentially, are business cards going away? I don’t think so. The benefits are far too great for any business entity to ignore. To summarize, business cards are:
Purposeful: A business card is one of the easiest and most efficient marketing tools a business can have at its disposal, and quite frankly people expect you to have one.
Cost-Effective: Depending on the quality and volume you desire, business cards are relatively cheap.
Brand Boosters: Business cards allow your brand to be memorable and at the disposal of everyone you come across with.
Sales-Ready Opportunity Generators: Customers have your business card and with this comes a greater chance to be called for your service.
If you have a business entity, design yours, or hire someone to do so.
Business cards are not going away and at least you know why.