In the modern age, almost everything is digitized, even business cards cannot escape this trend. In fact, there are many advantages to using electronic business cards, but very few people can do without traditional paper cards altogether. How do digital business cards work? One of the oldest is the iCard, which can be attached to an email as a vcf file. In addition, many programs create digital business cards on demand, including the widely used Evernote. Business cards that can be carried on a smartphone via an app are becoming increasingly popular. What all electronic business cards have in common is that they no longer contain only information in text form. Instead, they contain QR codes that, after a scan, either lead to a web page with more information or even immediately initiate a contact in the address book. This all sounds very convenient and time saving, but in practice there are still many problems.
It is possible to make mistakes.
As long as digital business cards work as they should, they will inspire you in your daily work because of their ease of use. However, there are often problems with paperless cards. Even when using QR codes, there are many times when the receiver terminal is not compatible. Instead of automatically creating a new contact, the smartphone only displays an error message in this case. This is not only extremely annoying, but also leaves a bad impression. But this is exactly what should be avoided during the first contact, which often goes hand in hand with the presentation of a business card. Even if a call comes in, a message arrives or even if the battery gives up the ghost when presenting the digital business card, this will raise the eyebrows of the person opposite. That is why digital business cards are only appropriate if such incidents can be excluded with a high degree of certainty or are not significant.
New is not always better
Classic paper business cards usually have no special features and are not connected to the internet. They contain only the most important information on a small card. This seems almost anachronistic today, but it offers many advantages to everyone involved. The creator of the business card can decide in advance on a certain design. Small details such as perforated letters or a well thought-out color scheme ensure that a business card immediately makes a good impression. In addition, different cards can be produced for different purposes. In addition, someone is more likely to remember you who received a paper business card from you. Eventually, they will empty their pockets and find a business card. With electronic business cards, they are much more likely to be forgotten on the smartphone. Because, honestly, how often do you look at your notes or contacts on your phone again?
The best of both worlds
None of this is to say that digital business cards per se are bad or inappropriate. On the contrary, they may even be the right thing to do. It still depends heavily on the environment. With an IT client, you do everything right with a digital business card and show that you are fully grounded in the subject matter. In other sectors, however, the classic paper card is preferred. In the end, there is no reason not to be happy with both variants. Creating a digital business card is not a bad idea. After all, it’s often done quickly and sometimes even for free. You are guaranteed to have such a card with you at all times, as long as you have your smartphone at hand. The business card in paper form is the ideal complement. With it, you can always decide on a case-by-case basis which variant is the most appropriate and could make the best impression.
The customer is king.
Your own business card plays an important role, especially in customer acquisition. You should always consider the needs, preferences and wishes of your potential customers. Digital business cards can have many advantages, but only if all functions are known to the other person. The owner of a craft business is often less interested in things like an automatic link to Instagram or a YouTube subscription. The reverse is true for startup founders who just want to get off to a good start with AI and cryptocurrencies. You should always think carefully about who gets which business card, because a good impression can be decisive for your acquisition. When in doubt, the classic paper business card is always a good choice, it works across generations and, assuming a tasteful appearance, it also looks good with young companies. Besides, you don’t have to worry about possible incompatibilities between Android, iOS and Windows. You know full well that the information on your business card arrives as you created it.
Paper beats electronic.
The traditional business card is currently still superior to its electronic counterpart. Perhaps that will change in the future? Maybe one day all smartphones will be fully compatible with all computers? Maybe one day it will only be possible to send business cards by telepathy. But until all these utopian ideas become reality, it makes sense that you always have a normal business card in your back pocket. It should, of course, be of high quality, have a well thought-out design and, above all, not contain any spelling mistakes, because especially in customer acquisition the principle applies, the first impression is always the most important. With a good business card in your back pocket, you always remain confident and never embarrassed. Mr. Peter Wolf lives and works in Dresden, holds a university degree in business informatics and is the marketing manager of printworld.com GmbH, which markets individual print products through its online printing company printworld.com. He is always on the lookout for exciting reports on the world of online printing. News and trends around the topic of user experience and product presentation are the focus of his interest.