I believe the answer to this is very dependent on the individual. The individual has to take their audience into consideration when giving out business cards. Using face recognition is valid because if after meeting you, whether at an event or free consultation, if they then go to your website to see if they are interested, and they see a picture of you, they will know they have gone to the right website. This alone can make it worthwhile given the shear amount of website’s out there.
Another important factor is that the more they see your face, the further it ushers the potential client down the road towards becoming a paying client which should be the main goal when giving out a business card A client will more likely connect with you on more than one occasion when you have more touching points. Putting your face on a business card may seem a little cheesy to some people, but, you most likely already put your photo on, your Facebook page, your LinkedIn , Twitter, Google +, YouTube videos, possibly even leaflets and brochures. So why wouldn’t you consider putting your photo on your business card to reinforce the connection once you have actually met the potential client?
Visual recognition can be a very powerful tool. It could also be seen as a way to break away from the pack from whatever field you are in, whether it be a solicitors or a graphic design company. For example, you are at a networking event and you give out twenty or more business cards. Maybe you’ve had a really good conversation with a particular person and you felt like they might be interested in your services. Which one is going to stand out to them when they review them later? Well a photo of yourself might remind them of the good conversation you had which then would take them to make the next step of choosing you to contact about potential work. The question to ask is ‘does it help me more than hinder me to have a picture on my business card?’
Personally, I use it in practicing today and would recommend considering it rather than dismissing it out of hand simply because a lot of professionals don’t have one. If you think that it’s cheesy because people use old pictures, simply don’t use an outdated picture! It’s no longer expensive to make and print your own business cards. So if you need to update your card, it won’t cost you all that much. But it’s also a good idea to try to use the same professional photo for all your advertising including your web presences and brochures so colleagues and more importantly clients and can continue to make the connection to you. The more often they connect, the closer you get to a new client.