I recently attended a business networking event and I exchanged business cards with a gentleman who worked for American Express. He said, “Wow, I can see you are an established business.” I said, yes I am. I was curious as to why he made the statement, so I decided to dig further, and asked why he said that. He said, businesses that are just starting out tend to have business cards that look less professional. He went on to explain that all the colors in my cards worked well together and the quality of the card is impressive. Within seconds of handing him my card, he was able to form a positive impression of me and my company.
As someone who sells design services, it’s extremely important for us to have high quality business cards and other branding and marketing collateral showing examples of the quality of work that we provide.
According to Forbes, “you have 7 seconds to make a great impression. The moment a stranger sees you, his or her brain makes a thousand computations, such as, do you have status or authority? Are you competent? Are you trustworthy?”
Your visual branding helps influence whether someone trusts you or not. That’s why it is critical that every business owner makes it a top priority – whether they are just starting out or are an already established business – to have high quality business cards and other marketing materials that project a professional image, make a great impression and set the tone of what can be expected from doing business with your company.
Here’s why you should care about what your business card says:
It communicates who you are.
Whether it is your business card, website, brochure or any other marketing collateral that your target audience comes into contact with, it is a direct representation of you and your company. Consider what message you want to send to others. Your business should give people an inside look into who you are and how you would like to be perceived. Remember, perception is reality.
Branding your business starts with you.
Your brand is more than a logo; it is your style. It’s how you present yourself, how you interact with others, what your values are. They all work together to convey what your brand represents. The design, the message, the feel of your card provides insight to others into who you are. A business card that is error-free tells people that you are detail-oriented while a business card printed on high quality paper tells people that you value quality. Your brand is not what you say you are, but what impression others get after interacting with you or your business.
It gets others to take notice.
A business card that makes a powerful impact will get others to take notice, not just once but a second time. Think about it, would you hold on to a crappy business card? Probably not. Strive to create a business card that is attractive, that encompasses who you are and what you represent in a visually compelling way and that has the ability to attract the attention of your target audience.
Finally, according to a survey by a global crowdsourcing marketplace, “while some may consider business cards antiquated in a digital age, a whopping 87 percent of Americans still exchange them when meeting someone for the first time.