Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Are Business Cards Dead

If you thought business cards were dead in this digital age, think again. Business cards are arguably as relevant today as they were 30 or 50 years ago. More than 10 billion business cards are printed and distributed each year in the United States— to contacts at trade shows, to customers and to people one meets in passing. Making your card stand out in this sea of business cards can be a challenge. Consider these five ways to make your business card rise to the top.

1. Make it different

Doing something a little unusual can make your business card noticeable in a pile of white cards with black print. This could mean using a different colored paper stock. For example, if you sell baby items, you might print your cards on blue and pink card stock instead of white. You can also experiment with different shapes and different graphics. For example, a book store owner might have a card shaped like a bookmark. Having a different-looking business card is especially important for those in creative fields, such as advertising and graphic design. Ordering your business cards online gives myriad options to create a unique and different look.

2. Use heavier paper

A heavier card gives the impression of being more expensive and more solid, both traits you want your clients to associate with your business. While the printing might cost a little more, the credibility you'll bring to your brand is worth the investment.

3. Insert QR codes

Adding a quick response (QR) code to your business card can be intriguing and is a good way to add additional information to your card. However, keep it simple. Too much information is not only visually distracting, but it usually fails to scan well. Also, make sure the "value-added" information from the QR code is up to date and interesting. Sending contacts to old information is a definite turn-off. Consider making your QR code send scanners to a coupon, so they're encouraged to engage with your brand.

4. Ask an open question

Inspiring curiosity is another good way to make your business card stand out. A travel company in Hungary asks on their business card for readers to call or email if they need a restaurant recommendation in Budapest. It's both different and intriguing, and a card that's likely to be saved.

5. Add your picture

How is someone who collects more than 50 business cards at a convention going to remember your card belongs to you? Add your picture to your card so the person you gave it to will instantly associate it with the conversation you had with them. You could even have that QR code send scanners to a video of you thanking them for considering you for their business.
Your business cards don't have to be boring. With a little effort and a little planning, your cards can rise to the top of the pile. What advice do you have for making business cards stand out? Share your thoughts in the comments.

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