In many industries, networking is one of the best ways to bring prospective clients, especially in the legal sector (like personal injury lawyers). Different networking tactics such as business cards form valuable connections and build trust, which is necessary for growing a robust clientele.
Business cards can make it easier for people to seek out personal injury lawyers when they need legal services. Moreover, the cards are a good marketing tool for communicating what a law firm represents and stands for.
With the digitalization of the corporate world, you may wonder whether it’s still practical to hand out traditional business cards. More and more personal injury lawyers are using online platforms like LinkedIn and Facebook to promote their business and communicate with potential clients.
With social media, attorneys can make all essential information about their firm available over the web, which beats the very purpose of business cards.
Are business cards truly becoming obsolete? Below, we’ll discuss several reasons why they may no longer be as relevant and effective as they used to be. Furthermore, we’ll provide the pros and cons of digital alternatives.
Common Problems with Traditional Business Cards
Business cards are an excellent marketing tool when they’re used and designed correctly. However, there are negative aspects you should also check out and consider before printing one.
Design and printing services can be costly
Unless you want to create your business card, it’s best to hire a competent graphic designer. Doing so ensures that your card attracts your target audience and meets industry aesthetics, but it all comes with a cost.
The designer will require additional payment if you wish to have the card redesigned. Premium paper and printing costs don’t come cheap either, so you must be willing to spend more for high-quality prints.
A hassle to carry around
You can only carry so many business cards at once. Plus, bringing them everywhere you go can be inconvenient and exhausting. A whole bunch of cards can also take up a lot of room in your purse or wallet.
If you keep them in your briefcase, you must rummage for one when you need it. Accepting paper business cards from others may make you overwhelmed by the number of cards. They’ll likely end up untouched and forgotten in your bag.
They’re often discarded
Let’s be honest. Many consumers save a company’s contact details on their smartphone and throw away the business card. Most paper cards get discarded in less than a week! It’s not only a waste of the resources you’ve put into creating the card but also detrimental to the environment.
Paper cards are not eco-friendly
Over seven million trees are cut down each year to make paper. Hence, if you want to follow eco-friendly practices like many companies, stopping the production of business cards can help reduce your paper consumption. Additionally, 90% of business cards are thrown away, turning them into the trash and harming the environment.
Key Benefits of Traditional Business Cards
While business cards have multiple disadvantages, they still offer several benefits for companies. When used on the right occasion, this classic strategy will provide better advantages in starting and managing connections and relationships.
Quickly captures attention
When a client touches a paper-based business card, it makes an immediate impression. It’s due to the card’s thickness and quality. Premium paper of the ideal card size speaks well about a company’s products or services.
When customers or clients are impressed by your business cards, you can make a good impression and gain attention. However, you’ll need an innovative graphic design to create an eye-catching business card.
Paper cards are easy and convenient to distribute. You must personally deliver the cards to interested people or distribute them randomly on the sidelines of a conference or seminar. You can also keep a stack in the lobby of your office so whoever wants one can get a business card.
Helps build personal connections
You may build relevant personal connections with people through paper cards. Cards are typically exchanged on joyful occasions or events and are often accompanied by a fruitful conversation. As a result, clients may associate positive feelings with the card and place a higher value on them. It ultimately aids in growing a loyal client base.
Main Problems of a Digital Business Card
Traditional business cards have their fair share of pros and cons, but so do digital cards. While they’re more innovative, they may not be the best choice for some businesses.
A big disadvantage of virtual cards is that many people still aren’t familiar with them. Older demographics, for instance, aren’t used to receiving business cards digitally. Others may be confused about collecting and saving the cards and contact information. Hence, while you may send out business cards, not all your potential clients may be able to download and see them.
Possible technical issues
If a digital business card software has faults, it may cause problems when distributing the card to clients and partners. Also, once a business card has been sent digitally, you can’t retrieve it even after realizing it contains errors.
Downloading digital business cards and the right reader apps for opening the file may be too inconvenient for some people, especially for those who don’t own a smartphone. In comparison, distributing and receiving paper cards take very little time and effort.
Reduced personal interaction
When you send out cards online, you forgo the handshake, talks, greetings, and other steps in delivering a business card to a client in person. Because you share these cards digitally, the personal touch of paper cards is somehow lost. You also won’t be able to gauge whether the recipient is truly interested in the business.
The Pros of Digital Business Cards
Costs are significantly lower
When you use digital business cards, you can eliminate paper and printing costs. You can skip having a graphic designer since many free templates and beginner-friendly editing tools are available online.
You can send them in real-time
If your target demographic is relatively tech-savvy, distributing digital business cards to your clients and contacts can be effortless. You don’t have to attend corporate events or wait for opportune moments to meet people before handing out business cards. Just send the cards via email, social media, or text.
Production takes much less time
Since you wouldn’t have to wait for the graphic artist to finish the design and the cards to be printed, your business cards will be ready in substantially less time. Also, because the files are digital, they’re easy to edit and update. You can make modifications in minutes and share your completed business cards within seconds.
You can include media
Another big advantage is that law firms can use digital cards to attach various media. These include images, videos, survey links, subscription lists, and sign-up forms. It’s beneficial in a variety of ways. For example, you can market your company through videos or build a list of contacts through forms.
Physical contact is limited
Since the COVID-19 pandemic, people have been trying to limit physical interaction and avoid contact as much as possible. In this case, digital business cards have a significant advantage over paper-based cards, as sending them doesn’t require physical touch.
You have more space
One of the best benefits of digital business cards is putting as much information as possible on them. You can include websites, email addresses, social media accounts, and other details you deem important in the card. Unlike printed cards, there’s plenty of room in digital business cards since recipients will open the file on their phones.
They’re more environmentally friendly
The most obvious advantage of digital business cards is that they’re eco-friendly. Their production doesn’t involve using paper materials at all. Moreover, if the recipients decide to discard them, the files will only be deleted and not thrown away.
Something to Ponder On
With the pandemic still posing health risks, personal injury lawyers must stop relying on face-to-face encounters to meet new clients.
People mostly use social media and business websites to research a company, so business cards are no longer indispensable. However, don’t dismiss their effectiveness in marketing your law firm. Remember that your personal brand is mirrored in your business card. It not only provides contact information but also expresses who you are as well as what you believe in.
A business card’s goal is to attract attention and boost brand recall, so when recipients need legal help from personal injury lawyers, they’ll think of you first. Deciding to forgo traditional business cards completely may do more harm than good for your firm. For instance, some clients think it’s unprofessional for attorneys not to have paper-based business cards.
You may also lose out on prospects not keen yet on embracing technology. While social media presence is enough for established law firms to attract clients, startups may rely on traditional business cards.
Regarding providing your contact details and leaving a lasting impression, paper and digital business cards are wonderful options. It may also be more strategic to use both types of cards to benefit from their advantages and reach a wider market.