Business Cards: Outdated or Classic?
Outdated or Classic?
A few years ago, there was nothing like starting a new job and getting a fresh box of business cards with your job title and credentials. They made you feel important, right? Nowadays though, business processes are different and often contact information is exchanged through a quick text or email. How many times have you gone to a business function and forgot your cards? Or how many times have you gone to an event and have nowhere to stash other people’s cards? When we meet a potential client or partner, we typically add them to our phones or look them up on LinkedIn. So, who needs business cards?
Many people are feeling that business cards are out of place in today’s business world for a few different reasons:
- Business cards are wasteful – they’re completely temporary and are often thrown out soon after they are exchanged
- Business cards out date as information changes and the unused ones are wasted
- Business cards are old-fashioned
Business cards always get forgotten at the office, but everyone always has their phone, so who needs them?
Although business cards certainly have some drawbacks, there are still many reasons why you should keep them around:
They can showcase your brand
A business card can be a great visual representation of your brand. When you’re texting your contact information or sending a LinkedIn invitation, you can’t customize it the same way that you can a business card. With a business card, you can stand out with unique shapes, sizes, textures, and colours to make a memorable impression. If you’re designing your own business card, there are some great templates and examples online that you can use for inspiration.
They are sometimes expected
In some business contexts, business cards are expected. For example, at a group meeting, passing business cards around the table helps people remember who’s who, and having business cards shows others that you’re prepared and organized. Business card etiquette also differs between cultures. In Japan, for example, exchanging business cards is a necessary and very formal process, and your business cards are considered an extension of yourself.
They are a more personal connection
When you’re networking face to face handing out a business card is a physical process that makes a stronger personal connection. Business cards can also be a way to share personal details about yourself that people can’t find online. For example, if you’re meeting an important potential client, you may want to mention that your business card has your personal cell phone which you only give to priority clients.
There are tools to help you manage them
Business cards don’t have to clutter up your desk or get filed away in an old school rolodex. Fortunately, in our technology-filled world, there are many digital solutions to help you keep them organized and handy for when you need them. Check out these apps that will help you seamlessly upload business cards to your contacts list.
Business cards may not be necessary for every situation, but they can be a great way to showcase your brand and make a more personal connection. Sometimes sticking with tradition and delivering a unique business card, instead of sending a LinkedIn invitation, can create a powerful and lasting connection with clients and partners.
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