It’s an age old debate that has never come to any final conclusion. Do you really need business cards or posters to promote yourself or your business? Well, as it turns out, there is still a need for these marketing tools and here is why:
Why Business Card?
In the digital information age something as basic as a business card may seem old school. In fact, that 3.5-inch by 2-inch piece of heavy duty paper is still you best opening line regardless of what a survey from the University of Kansas says.
In 2013 2,400 staff and faculty members there were asked how many of them handed out 10 or less business cards per month. A total of 60% of the respondents said they did. Surprisingly, only 9% indicated they had handed out more than 25 cards in a month.
While that may sound as if the business card is dead, the survey also shows that they are still relevant. Nobody said they no longer use them at all.
Here are the four reasons why you still need business cards:
1 – First Impression
The best way to cement a connection when introducing yourself to a new contact is with a business card. It contains all your important contact information on a handy little card that can be filed away for future reference. In fact, business cards are still expected by contacts you will make during business hours and they give you legitimacy and credibility.
2 – Direct Marketing
As you never know when an opportunity will present itself to promote yourself, business cards are easy to keep with you at all times. Plus, there is no better form of direct marketing than face-to-face and a business card combined with a handshake is still your best bet.
3 – Brand Builder
What better way to establish your company/service brand than with a business card? To address the high-tech contacts a QR code and links to all social media streams should appear on the card along with your logo, slogan and contact information. It’s a mini advertisement you hand out whenever you need to.
4 – Affordable
If you still think you don’t need business cards consider this: they are the cheapest marketing tool you will ever purchase. If you compare the cost of production of business cards to press kits, product samples, radio or newspaper advertising you will quickly see the value of business cards to your business.
The Bottom Line
Sure, everything seems to be heading to the world of digital marketing but what you should remember is this: not all of your customers or contacts will be computer-literate. Many will not use social media and others will ignore or block online advertising pop-ups or use other filters when online. That’s where traditional marketing methods – like the business card – will continue to be king.
They’re big and seem to be in your face in places where many people gather. They are smaller than billboards and still carry a message of an event, concert or activity. But are posters still relevant in the digital age?
There is no denying that posters continue to be effective – according to a study conducted in 2005 comparing computer screen text to printing text. Alshaali & Varshney found that the average person reads computer text between 20 and 30-percent slower than printed text. The study also showed that a website will be skimmed over in as little as 15-seconds where printed copy – on paper or poster stock – will be slowly absorbed as the reader becomes engaged with the message.
Here are four reasons to use posters in your marketing/promotional tool kit:
1 – Target Marketing
Say you are promoting a new band. You can select the precise locations where the demographic you are trying to reach frequents and place your posters there. Or you can just post them in high traffic locations with ease. Try putting a billboard in an apartment lobby or company elevator.
2 – Easy To See
Posters are a great visual medium to get across a message or idea. Unlike radio or television where the message works better through repetition, a powerful visual on a poster will cause the average person to look directly at it longer which assists in getting that message inside their heads.
3 – Produce Response
In the case of posters promoting events and activities, with the right call to action, clearly easy to read and understand, they produce results. Billboards fail as people are often whizzing by them on their way to somewhere else. Posters engage readers who have time to read and understand the message they contain.
4 – Affordable
The costs associated with posters are far less than any other traditional form of advertising including newspaper and radio. Plus, the time it takes from the original design phase to the final printing is far less as well which means you can start promoting your event much faster.
The Bottom Line
Movie theatres still use posters to promote upcoming shows. Night clubs still use posters to advertise live concerts. Why do you think that is? It’s because they still work and they will work for you as well.