Are business cards dead? Or are they still surviving, and more importantly, are they doing their job as efficiently as they should? Are they still relevant, or is it just the lack of a substitute that is making them survive, even if they’re lackluster?
Well, I am not sure whether it would surprise you or not, but all the answers to the above questions favor business cards. They are still holding their ground firmly, with 27 million business cards printed daily and nearly 10 billion annually (more than the world’s population of 8 billion).
They are one of the best tools for business networking, having an expansive role across the process, including during and after the interaction with the prospect.
During the interaction, business cards act as icebreakers and build a great first impression. They make you sound more professional, prepared, and serious while boosting your own confidence and morale, not to mention how much the prospects judge your business on the basis of your business card.
In the post-interaction phase, business cards activate positive meeting recalls so that prospects take you and your proposition more seriously.
Thus, a higher business quotient demands you carry a business card while going for a meeting with your prospect and not having one might breach unspoken business etiquette.
Despite all of these advantages, business cards fall short after a certain point. For instance, of the 10 billion cards printed each year, 88% of these, i.e., 8 billion, get tossed within a week. On the other hand, digital cards lack the personalized touch of physical cards that is vital to developing a connection with prospects and may also require downloading an app, something not everyone is willing to do.
That is why it is time for the next generation of AR Business Cards. Encapsulating the “wow” effect, AR cards beautifully bring the best of both worlds: physical and digital business cards.
Their unique, three-dimensional, and immersive offering compels the prospect to experience AR repeatedly and never let go of the card. Plus, all this comes without compromising on the personalization touch for a faster and deeper connection.
Let’s see what AR Business Cards are and how you can get one for your business.
What are AR Business Cards?
As I said in the above section, AR Business Cards combine the best of both physical and digital business cards. It sounds really great, so how do they do it?
Well, AR Business Cards act as a trigger for the AR experiences that overlay digital elements onto the prospect’s real-world environment. So, at first glance, they are just like regular paper-based business cards, but the special AR component adds a digital aspect to them, resulting in an AR-enabled Business Card that you can hand out to your prospects and impress them right away.
AR Business Cards are highly interactive and offer an immersive experience. What this means is that your prospects can interact with digital elements through their smartphones.
Thus, depending upon what content you choose to offer through AR experiences, users can drag, drop, pan, zoom, play with, push, pull, select, watch, pause, listen to, etc. the digital 3D content therein to learn more about you and your company while having a good time.
Now for the immersive part, AR business cards have the ability to scan the environment and overlay three-dimensional digital objects all around the prospect’s surroundings and cover them from all sides. Thereby, giving them a sense of immersion in a digitally enhanced environment.
So, what type of content do AR business cards offer?
There is literally no limit to what you can offer through an AR business card experience. Depending on your networking exigencies, you can build on your AR experience on Vossle with
- 3D models,
- Audio, and
- 3D Text.
Thereby, you bring a well-packaged, attention-grabbing experience to your prospects that they value and explore.
However, one of the best applications from a brand’s perspective is the possibility to carve out a complete brand interaction journey for prospects. This is done by embedding URLs into the experience tapping onto which the prospects can explore the different aspects of your business.
We will discuss it in detail in the fifth section, where we talk about the benefits of AR Business Cards.
How do AR Business Cards work?
AR Business Cards trigger an AR experience using multiple trigger points, i.e., a QR code, or by converting the business card into a unique marker. Prospects scan this trigger through their camera on a smartphone or tablet to view that experience in the web browser.
Now, there are two ways you can create these experiences on an AR platform like Vossle.
Markerless AR Business Card
First, if the AR experience is markerless, a Vossle QR code is added to the business card. As soon as the prospect scans this QR code, he is taken to a link where the camera will scan the surrounding area and overlay computer-generated audiovisual information on top of it.
Marker-based AR Business Card
Second, if the AR experience is marker-based, then there is an additional step to trigger the AR experience. In this method, the user has to visit a link using a button or QR code, and within that link, the user has to scan the unique marker to view the AR experience.
This is why marker-based experiences are becoming more prevalent in native applications, while markerless experiences are more often preferred for web or browser-based (WebAR) implementation.
We have observed at Vossle that creating unique markers is problematic for users in general, as there are so many things to keep in mind. Here is a good article on creating good markers that we recommend reading: https://github.com/Carnaux/NFT-Marker-Creator/wiki/Creating-good-markers .
To sum it up,
- A Markerless experience requires you to scan a QR card or click on a link and begin interacting with the AR experience in your browser.
A Marker-based experience requires you to open a link using a QR code or click on a link, once the link opens the user scans the marker there to interact with the AR Experience.
Amazing, isn’t it? So how can you get a cool AR business card of your own? Is there any easy way to do it—any app or platform that can help? Something where you just put in the details and it creates a shareable AR experience on its own? Yes, there is a Vossles AR platform. Read on.
Steps to Create an AR Business Card
Getting an AR Business Card has never been easier. With Vossle’s cloud-based SAAS platform, you can create AR content in a matter of minutes. No need to code or download any application, with just a few clicks and settings, your AR experience is ready.
- Step 1 – Create your account on Vossle (you can try it for free). Log in to access the Vossle dashboard.
- Step 2 – Once logged in, click on “Create AR”. You will see four option
- Step 3 – Click on “Markerless” and fill in the following details
- Experience Name: Choose a name for your AR experience. (Note – The URL to this experience will include this name)
- Splash Image: Upload a splash image in your experience. (This image will pop up once the user scans your QR code on the business card.)
- Content File: Upload the 3D animation file of your experience. The supported formats are – GLB, JPG, PNG, and MP4.
- Light Setting Range: Adjust the light to be placed on the AR object to add realism.
- Marker Image: Upload the image of your business card or any other object minted to use as AR trigger. (This is the only difference between creating a markerless experience and a marker-based experience. Markerless do not require a Marker image.)
- GA Code: It is a unique identifier that helps Google Analytics to collect data from your website. Insert your GA code and the data will be available on your dashboard.
- Label: Name the digital 3D model in AR experience.
- Website Link: Place the link to your website or social media profiles here. Prospect will land on the defined webpage by tapping on the ‘i’ button available on the right side of the screen.
- Geo Location: To make the AR experience location-based. You can insert the longitudes, longitudes, and distances.
- Step 4 – Click on the “Submit” button at the bottom. Your AR experience is ready and the link and QR code are available. Easy peasy!!
These amazing experiences bring a lot of benefits to businesses, as we will see in the next section.
Benefits of AR Business Cards
Create Impactful Communication
One of the major benefits of AR Business Cards is that they facilitate deeply impressionable communication through interactive multimedia.
Until now, business cards, whether physical or digital, were limited in their scope of information sharing; AR business cards expand the horizon. Not only can your prospect access videos, animations, graphics, etc., but they can also interact with the content without you worrying about the limited space. An AR business card allows you to share any amount of content in multiple formats.
The only limit is the imagination of the businesses as to how they would want to showcase themselves on this newfound technological platform.
Create an Intuitive & Engaging Journey
As we discussed above, Vossle’s AR Business Cards allow you to embed URLs in the AR experience. Thus, you can direct your prospects to different engagement channels for a better experience with your brand and to develop deeper relationships.
Simply put, you hand out your AR Business Card to the prospect, who scans the QR code, and the AR experience starts. The experience displays your introduction, where your holographic avatar introduces your company and its goals. Then, at the end of the video, your animated business logo appears along with different social media logos with the caption “tap here”.
The prospect taps on one of the social media logos, which directs them to your profile on a particular social media platform. The prospect explores the profile and finds different CTAs along the social media timeline, which takes them to your website.
Doing so leads to a particular landing page that informs them about your different business propositions and why they should go for them. As impressed as they are, they turn to you with more interest. You have a meaningful discussion, and you successfully onboard a new client.
Prospects value originality and expect you to come up with something they have never seen before. They want to be assured that you can adapt, innovate, and expand before they invest their time, money, and energy.
This is where business innovations form a critical factor because, when you bring novelty into an otherwise regular interaction, it impresses them to the core. They become more interested in you, your business, and the proposed deal.
Even better, if the innovation is backed by a powerful market-disrupting technology like Augmented Reality (AR), nothing can be more assuring. Such technologically facilitated efforts underpin your potential and your commitment to your business. They listen to you more carefully and want to really understand what you are bringing to the table, and this is where you seize the opportunity.
AR business cards use AR to add an intuitive and interactive experience that engages prospects in more than one way. Apart from sharing general business information, AR business cards really shine when it comes to storytelling.
You no longer tell your prospects your story; you show them, which is more impactful and engaging. This develops an emotional bond with your prospects, and they feel more involved, increasing their chances of coming on board.
Change AR content without changing the physical appearance of cards
This advantage is quite exclusive to the Vossle platform and is a great one indeed. Vossle gives you the liberty to alter your underlying AR content without changing anything on your physical business card, not even the QR code.
We enable you to change the AR content on your business card by changing the.glb in the Vossle dashboard to match, say, the contents of the marketing campaign your team has planned without having to print a new set of cards.
This can help businesses change the content of their business card based on their planned marketing campaigns.
Conclusion – A clear-cut competitive advantage
With all the benefits we discussed above, AR business cards bring a clear competitive advantage to your business.
9 out of 10 businesses might not be able to develop AR Business Cards, but with Vossle, you can do it with ease. It is the right time to employ AR to attain an added advantage, lead the industry, and set standards.