Are Business Cards Outdated?
In today’s digital age, with LinkedIn and digital interviewing, some people say business cards are unnecessary. But let’s not write the eulogy for business cards just yet.
Business cards are still used today for a reason – they’re a valuable networking tool and still the quickest way to trade contact information.
Professionals no longer have to rely on business cards alone to market themselves because of LinkedIn and other social media websites.
But business cards can still be a vital part of the marketing mix, and thanks to new technology, they can be even more effective than in the past.
Here are some reasons why Empire Resume thinks you should keep using business cards, along with ways to maximize their impact:
Simple and Direct
Despite the prevalence of smartphones, business cards are still the quickest and easiest way to share contact information while you’re networking.
Sure, you could fumble for your iPhone and swap numbers and email addresses. But how is that any more effective than simply sharing a business card?
Business cards are also always accessible – no need to worry about your phone’s battery level or internet connection.
There are mobile apps where you can easily store contact information but remember that not everyone has a smartphone (as hard as that is to believe).
An Excellent Networking Tool
Networking online is necessary these days, but Empire Resume thinks making face-to-face connections is still the best way to succeed in the business world.
Networking in person helps you make authentic connections via handshakes, eye contact, and small talk. Using LinkedIn for networking fine, but it may never replace the effectiveness of in person conversations. During these conversations, most people will expect you to have a business card.
Handing out a business card makes lasting impressions, and it also ensures the person has the correct spelling of your name and company in case they want to look you up on LinkedIn later.
Business Cards Serve as a Reminder
Business cards also act as a reminder. A professional who took your card at a networking event, say, three months ago will be reminded of you every time they see your card on their desk.
The person may not have a job opening now, but three months later when they do, your business card might spark a call from them.
Exchanging business cards is also still more professional than simply giving someone your contact information.
There’s a long, old school tradition of handing out your card and, despite technological advances, pulling out your smartphone and trading information still hasn’t replaced trading business cards.
Marketing Yourself or Your Business
Branding is vital in the business world, whether you’re marketing yourself while looking for a job or marketing your business or company. An effective brand helps people remember you and what you have to offer.
Business cards help with the visual aspect of your brand. Depending on the design, a business card will evoke emotions and build connections during networking.
A business card also makes you or your company look more legitimate. Writing a great LinkedIn profile and website does that as well, but a business card usually serves as the first impression when marketing yourself that shows you’re ready to do business.
Not only that, but business cards can also direct professional contacts to the websites and profiles you list on your card. That eliminates the need for them to look you up via a Google search later.
Business card designs are fancier than ever before, but Empire Resume advises not to go overboard. Remember the primary purpose is to convey your contact information, so make sure the text is easy to read.
However, creative business cards that include graphics and your logo are more likely to be remembered and shared, which furthers your efforts in marketing yourself, your business, or your company.
Your business card should also be coherent with other marketing materials you have. For example, if you have a personal website, consider using the same design, fonts, and colors from your website on your business card.
Many professionals receive dozens, if not hundreds of business cards per year, so don’t be hesitant to try something with a “wow” factor.
Several innovative printing companies can help you come up with stunning designs using a variety of colors, or even using different materials, such as silk, cotton, and suede.
No matter what design you choose, Empire Resume thinks having a business card is still relevant in the digital age.
New technology may replace the business card and even replace resumes eventually, but for the time being, business cards are still part of the fabric of professional culture.
Maria Gold is a Content Manager/Writer for Empire Resume. She is dedicated to helping educate and motivate people with the latest career articles and job search advice. Her interests range from writing to programming and design. She is also passionate about innovation, entrepreneurship, and technology.