Who still uses business cards? And if so, HOW?

41 replies
Is the business card dead?

I don't know. I see them on bulletin boards in the grocery store lobby, but other than that, I haven't been handed one in years.

Maybe Realtors? But is there anyone here who still has business cards and if so, how do you distribute them and to whom?

I have a friend with a small print shop who is lamenting the loss of business, whereas not long ago he was cranking out thousands of biz cards, today, his presses remain silent.

Does anyone still own or use a Rolodex type system or is it all digital now?

GordonJ
#business #cards
  • Profile picture of the author Jeffery
    Dude, it went digital years ago. When you see two people pointing their phones at each other's phone they are exchanging digital business cards. Some events even have public digital card machines that anyone can pass their companies card to the vendor(s). All nice and tidy.


    I have seen a lot of different ways. Salespeople leave their cards on vendor's booths, tables, etc. Others leave cards that mimic debit/credit cards. Even people that leave one dollar bills on tables with their phone number and domain name.
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    • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
      Originally Posted by Jeffery View Post

      Dude, it went digital years ago. When you see two people pointing their phones at each other's phone they are exchanging digital business cards. Some events even have public digital card machines that anyone can pass their companies card to the vendor(s). All nice and tidy.


      I have seen a lot of different ways. Salespeople leave their cards on vendor's booths, tables, etc. Others leave cards that mimic debit/credit cards. Even people that leave one dollar bills on tables with their phone number and domain name.
      Yes it did. Went digital years ago. The ones I've seen recently at the Bulletin Board (talk about OLD world, although still good for lost cats, dogs and reptiles)...

      have had QR codes on them, wonder if they ever get scanned?? With the dynamic QR codes, a business card could have a monthly offer on it, so might be kept longer??

      The THING about biz cards, paper, or digital is...DISTRIBUTION. Getting the card into the hands of potential customers and with the low cost of mail, and dynamic QR codes, maybe a zip zone mailing might replace the leave on the table approach.

      I don't use them, but they still might have a use??? Thanks for your response.

      GordonJ
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      • Profile picture of the author kenmichaels
        Originally Posted by GordonJ View Post

        Yes it did. Went digital years ago. The ones I've seen recently at the Bulletin Board (talk about OLD world, although still good for lost cats, dogs and reptiles)...

        have had QR codes on them, wonder if they ever get scanned?? With the dynamic QR codes, a business card could have a monthly offer on it, so might be kept longer??

        The THING about biz cards, paper, or digital is...DISTRIBUTION. Getting the card into the hands of potential customers and with the low cost of mail, and dynamic QR codes, maybe a zip zone mailing might replace the leave on the table approach.

        I don't use them, but they still might have a use??? Thanks for your response.

        GordonJ
        Around here pre covid, almost no one used QR codes, now everyone does, including when running local television ads.
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        • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
          Originally Posted by kenmichaels View Post

          Around here pre covid, almost no one used QR codes, now everyone does, including when running local television ads.
          We're still testing, some change minute to minute, and others by the week or month. If one scans a code and doesn't want/like the offer, they can simply refresh or rescan and get a different offer. I think this is in its infancy, but could be wrong.

          As for the Biz-Card, a dynamic code on the back could take one to a different offer, and very soon, advanced enough to serve an offer specific to that card. Maybe a realtor could put her most recent listing on it, so if she gives them out at an Open House, and shows the visitors the scan, maybe they will hold on to them, and see what else she has to offer.

          The dynamic QR code, is, in my opinion, a potential game changer with changing offers.

          And the DISTRIBUTION of the card can be targeted as in the case of the Realtor, giving them out at open houses.

          Fast changing marketing could make the business card relevant again. Maybe??

          GordonJ
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  • Profile picture of the author Jeffery
    The thing with QR codes is the potential to scan an item in a store and now the only offers are for that store's offers. Few minutes later you walk by one of the offers and your device alerts you to a different offer for a different item. Annoying.

    Say you scan a QR code on the bulletin board and the code sets up a "hack" in your device wherein you just agreed to receive unsolicited offers from whomever posted the card.
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  • Profile picture of the author savidge4
    I use a lot of cards... not a fan of the "digital pass".

    The issue I have with passing ( phone pass ) off my number, is that you end up with theirs and they have yours... and you end up with this whole I was I supposed to call them or were they going to call me? Handing someone a card puts all of the responsibility on the person receiving the card. If they WANT what it is you are offering they will call... if they don't they wont call. I only want motivated clients, and nothing says they are motivated like them calling you.

    Just my little point of view on the subject.
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    • Profile picture of the author Seaglass042
      Originally Posted by savidge4 View Post

      you end up with theirs and they have yours... and you end up with this whole I was I supposed to call them or were they going to call me?
      This. Also, some people will keep your paper card, even if they toss it in a drawer. And when they stumble across it days later, it will be more memorable than an entry on their smartphone. Can't have too many arrows in your quiver.
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  • Profile picture of the author aduttonater
    I only use business cards when doing an on-site estimate. I just feel like it's part of the first impression. Fliers are used for marketing door to door.
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  • Profile picture of the author aduttonater
    I use my cards as call to action to my website. Vista print all day.
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  • Profile picture of the author WF- Enzo
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    There are still people I personally know who use them. Nothing beats the old ways, as they say it. But to give your cards a more modern feel, add your QR code that's linked to your business website or something.
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  • Profile picture of the author marciayudkin
    If a new tradesperson comes to my house and they don't have a business card, they probably are not going to get my repeat business. There are certain trades I use only once every couple of years, and the way I find them again is I look on my refrigerator or in my collection of business cards.

    In that situation, business cards are still necessary, in my opinion.

    Marcia Yudkin
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  • I use business cards the same way everyone used to do. I hand them out to customers, when they buy. I give them to people that ask for them.

    But if I really want to talk to this person? I ask for their card. In fact, at events, I have two pockets for cards. The pocket of cards I won't call (maybe add them to a list), and the people I want to call, and I write on the back of the card, why I want to call them.

    Handing out a card, and accepting a card are social rituals. They have purpose.

    If I was introduced to someone and they looked at their phone and just started imputing my information, I may actually stop talking until they look at me again.

    I don't just hand out card at events, or social situations. If I give them my card, that means I want them to call me...and that's actually pretty rare.
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  • Profile picture of the author sbishop
    I use business cards all the time. I have a full color fron with a black and white back that has the word notes and a bunch of lines. I am in landscaping and remodeling. I write the quote of rthe project on the back of my business card and leave it with them

    I had a guy call me 6 months latter and he had saved my business card with the quote
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    • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
      Originally Posted by sbishop View Post

      I use business cards all the time. I have a full color fron with a black and white back that has the word notes and a bunch of lines. I am in landscaping and remodeling. I write the quote of rthe project on the back of my business card and leave it with them

      I had a guy call me 6 months latter and he had saved my business card with the quote
      Thanks sbishop,

      Sounds like the ol biz card works for you. I get the quote, it is a useful place to put your quote on, and when the consumer stops shopping around, then you may get the call.

      My question for you is, How did the guy who called you 6 months later GET your card in the firstplace?

      A few years back, we tested the "paperboy" route method, had kids hand out a small plastic bag full of business cards of local businesses. It wasn't profitable enough, although most of the small businesses like the idea of distribution.

      In the old days, we would leave them on tables in restaurants, put on bulletin boards in lobbies, hand then out randomly, give out at meetings and events. This was NOT a very effective way to get the word out, however, the low cost of the card meant one could afford to give away dozens to find ONE customer.

      Guys like you, what I call neighborhood tradesmen, have success passing out cards in the neighborhood they have a customer. So, once you complete your landscaping job, you spend some time (or pay a kid) passing out cards.

      In your case, there are a lot of POTENTIAL customers in any given neighborhood, so I believe a shotgun approach would work, because like your guy, a person might throw a card into the kitchen drawer or hang it on the fridge and keep it in mind.

      Next month, April 2021, I'll be retesting a version of the "paperboy" distribution method having found a cheap way to get the cards into the hands of the neighborhoods. Today, we are looking at about 11 cents a house, so a local landscaper could have 1000 biz cards passed out (GUARANTEED) for 111.00.

      As someone who uses them, what is your opinion on that COST of distributing your cards to a very specific neighborhood? Would my service be of interest to you?

      Thanks for sharing and any insight would be appreciated.

      GordonJ
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  • Profile picture of the author AUwayne
    I still use business cards for group meetings and have cards with a QR code to introduce the product I have. "Dude it went digital LOL" not true not everyone wants to exchange a digital business card in the first meeting as it takes time. If I am interested I will take a business card in person if they don't have one then where is my reference point later, scrolling through a phone to try and find someone Not for me.
    I think your friend needs to adjust what he is printing to more of an advertising card.
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  • Profile picture of the author DURABLEOILCOM
    A hand shake and a premium business card still goes a long way in the business world. The physical card leaves a positive feeling for the receiver.
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  • Yes! I find business cards useful for big trade shows that I attend. That way, the person receiving my card can quickly remember where we interacted.

    And also not everyone knows how to add contacts via the mobile device so it's best to hand out them.
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  • Profile picture of the author sdentrepreneur
    Sadly....Business Cards are becoming obsolete. Digital Business Cards are the way to go IMO.
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    • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
      Originally Posted by sdentrepreneur View Post

      Sadly....Business Cards are becoming obsolete. Digital Business Cards are the way to go IMO.
      Well, scores of businesses have PAID to have their printed on paper business cards distributed since my original post.

      You may be right, they may become obsolete, but as of May 18, 2021, savvy businesses are still using them and paying to have them distributed.

      Thanks all,

      GordonJ
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    • Profile picture of the author savidge4
      Originally Posted by sdentrepreneur View Post

      Sadly....Business Cards are becoming obsolete. Digital Business Cards are the way to go IMO.
      I sadly had to look this up... LOL oh my - I ordered one, ok 5 of them, BUT.. I am still going to hand them a paper card - and here is why..


      My phone has over 300 contacts in it.. I know many people with MORE.. so to "Tap" and the data goes right in there is all fine and dandy, but the person days later is going to say.. hmmm what was that guys name again?

      But to have a laugh here is my info "Tap" aint technology cool? ooh ahh, and then say here is my old timers card incase you are like me and am great with faces and bad with names hahaha ( im not bad with names btw )

      And besides I like keeping the lumber and paper industry alive and working! hahaha
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  • Profile picture of the author Pentagram
    I do

    they are classy and classic

    Its wise to use it since people are forgetting it.

    One humble recommendation to avoid wasting paper and having your card thrown at the nearest bin is to ask if they would prefer to take a photo of it from their smart phone or to have the physical card

    Keep one card visible at the desk in a small glass frame so people can see it and take photo of it if they prefer but cant take it.

    You can hand them the physical card instead if they ask for it.

    use common sense to judge depending also on the client and how serious he or she seems to you.
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    • Profile picture of the author bdover
      Originally Posted by Pentagram View Post

      ... and take photo of it if they prefer but cant take it..
      You mean business card scanning app?
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  • Profile picture of the author bdover
    Originally Posted by GordonJ View Post

    Does anyone still own or use a Rolodex type system or is it all digital now?
    I own one. It's in my storage room setting next to my typewriter, Commandor 64, and Windows 3.11
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  • Profile picture of the author toysoldier80
    Business cards are still great to leave at businesses. A lot of times, businesses allow people to leave business cards on the counter and within certain other areas of the business. The cards can't hurt. You can always leave them with people after a conversation or inside certain places that are visable for people to see and possibly pick up for themsleves.
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  • Profile picture of the author sdentrepreneur
    There is a free App called Blinq
    It's the best Digital Business Card I have seen.
    How about 10 Likes for this tip? LOL
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  • Profile picture of the author Kavitazen
    Business card is still being used by many people, there are many businesses where digital business card cannot be given and there are many vendors who understand only business card. But both have their importance in their place.
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    • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
      Originally Posted by Kavitazen View Post

      Business card is still being used by many people, there are many businesses where digital business card cannot be given and there are many vendors who understand only business card. But both have their importance in their place.
      I think you are right.

      If anyone is interested in seeing how thousands of biz cards were distributed recently, and at a very nice profit too...check out businesscardconnections dot com and see how old meets new and how it solves the distribution problem.

      This might be something some of you might like to do.

      GordonJ
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      • Profile picture of the author Kavitazen
        Thank you for your suggestion
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  • Profile picture of the author Monetize
    I don't think that business cards are dead at all.
    Everyone from the lawn care man to the lawyer
    passes them out or sticks them in people's door.

    I have had business cards printed ever since I
    got my first phone number because I never could
    stand the thought of my number being scribbled
    on a scrap of paper.

    I also own a vintage round metal Rolodex,
    the kind that closes and locks.

    That thing is classic.

    Youngsters don't know what's good.
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    • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
      Originally Posted by Monetize View Post

      I don't think that business cards are dead at all.
      Everyone from the lawn care man to the lawyer
      passes them out or sticks them in people's door.

      I have had business cards printed ever since I
      got my first phone number because I never could
      stand the thought of my number being scribbled
      on a scrap of paper.

      I also own a vintage round metal Rolodex,
      the kind that closes and locks.

      That thing is classic.

      Youngsters don't know what's good.
      Monetize, I'm jealous of your Rolodex...miss those things.

      We know people still buy them, usually 500 to 1000 at a time, for best price.

      And yet most have half of those still in the box in their desk drawer.

      Mikey, a kid with a bike, can put the cards into doors...and pretty cheaply too, although if Mikey gets bit by a dog, or more likely, he tosses handfuls into the trash...the cheap distribution can get expensive.

      With EDDM, the business is mostly assured their cards are going where they are suppose to go and when. It just makes sense to distribute your cards to those people who could be a customer (in most businesses, not all)...but getting 2500 hundred cards delivered for a very reasonable price...is a smart way to do it.

      Don't let Mikey do it, let USPS and EDDM.

      GordonJ

      P.S. Thing about a Rolodex, never had to worry about the battery or internet service, never lost data, and it held a lot of information too.
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      • Profile picture of the author Monetize
        Originally Posted by GordonJ View Post

        Monetize, I'm jealous of your Rolodex...miss those things.

        Mikey, a kid with a bike, can put the cards into doors...and pretty cheaply too, although if Mikey gets bit by a dog, or more likely, he tosses handfuls into the trash...the cheap distribution can get expensive.

        You can still find those old metal Rolodex on eBay.

        I am not averse to using EDDM, but these days I
        trust the USPS about as much as I would a Mikey.

        I'm sure you've seen the videos of letter carriers
        discarding mail into the dumpsters. Supposedly
        some of them don't like dealing with mass mail.

        SMH
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        • Profile picture of the author GordonJ
          Originally Posted by Monetize View Post

          You can still find those old metal Rolodex on eBay.

          I am not averse to using EDDM, but these days I
          trust the USPS about as much as I would a Mikey.

          I'm sure you've seen the videos of letter carriers
          discarding mail into the dumpsters. Supposedly
          some of them don't like dealing with mass mail.

          SMH
          Not so much with local EDDM, small routes, mailing only 2500, usually involves a handful of carriers, and with an exact date to be delivered, simple checks insure everyone gets their mail.

          And that is why, 10,000 or more, just doesn't work, you take your chances...but with local areas, this isn't a problem. (Unless the carrier is named Mikey, then lookie out!)

          GordonJ
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  • Profile picture of the author sdentrepreneur
    I'm loving this Digital Business Card App called Blinq
    I've been using it at networking events and got 3 new clients from it this week.
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  • Profile picture of the author DABK
    I do, a lot less than I used to, though. I do it two ways:


    1. I give to prospects and clients, when I ask them to email or fax me something... Yes, some people still fax.


    2. When I network... I have on the back an offer with an odd discount: 16.3731% off or something like that. People always seem to look at the back of the card. They see the odd discount and ask me why do I have such an odd discount. Almost all of them follow up in the same breath with: I got it. And smile.


    What they get is that my card make them talk to me, so I don't have to come up with a conversation starter.


    PS If they actually want the discount, I give it to them. In 20+ years, nobody's actually wanted the discount.


    Originally Posted by GordonJ View Post

    Is the business card dead?

    I don't know. I see them on bulletin boards in the grocery store lobby, but other than that, I haven't been handed one in years.

    Maybe Realtors? But is there anyone here who still has business cards and if so, how do you distribute them and to whom?

    I have a friend with a small print shop who is lamenting the loss of business, whereas not long ago he was cranking out thousands of biz cards, today, his presses remain silent.

    Does anyone still own or use a Rolodex type system or is it all digital now?

    GordonJ
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  • Profile picture of the author WF- Enzo
    Administrator
    This post is almost a year old, and there are parallels to when you're given a business card.

    You don't know when it'll come in handy, but a business card you find in your drawer could be a closed deal or something.


    Originally Posted by GordonJ View Post

    Is the business card dead?

    I don't know. I see them on bulletin boards in the grocery store lobby, but other than that, I haven't been handed one in years.

    Maybe Realtors? But is there anyone here who still has business cards and if so, how do you distribute them and to whom?

    I have a friend with a small print shop who is lamenting the loss of business, whereas not long ago he was cranking out thousands of biz cards, today, his presses remain silent.

    Does anyone still own or use a Rolodex type system or is it all digital now?

    GordonJ
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  • Profile picture of the author jmalic
    Its not literrally dead but there will always come a time when they will be handy. Just have a couple on your wallet. We always never know
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  • Profile picture of the author SearchEngineWays
    It's not dead yet, 40% of business peoples still using it and 60% of peoples upgraded using digital business cards.
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  • Profile picture of the author sdentrepreneur
    I use a free Digital Business Card App called Blinq instead of a real card. It's the future.
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  • Profile picture of the author AmericanMuscleTA
    I love business cards! Still use them for work and I even made up business cards for my evangelism endeavors.
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  • Profile picture of the author IM2Pat
    Banned
    I still use them however very judiciously! Now it's your LinkedIN profile and are you on Facebook! Strange days indeed!

    I can remember 20 years ago when the state of the art for networking material was a business card in the shape of a mini-dvd!! Anybody remember that?
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    • Profile picture of the author WF- Enzo
      Administrator
      True. But I'm reluctant to share my personal Facebook profile, so I just share LinkedIn.

      Originally Posted by IM2Pat View Post

      I still use them however very judiciously! Now it's your LinkedIN profile and are you on Facebook! Strange days indeed!

      I can remember 20 years ago when the state of the art for networking material was a business card in the shape of a mini-dvd!! Anybody remember that?
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