We all collect business cards. When you’re out networking and meeting people, you get their business card and you give them yours. Then you get home or back to the office, you put their business card in a nice little pile and often never look at it again unless you need something, right?
How can you make sure that this doesn’t happen to YOUR business card?
One of the most important pieces of marketing collateral you can have is a high-quality business card. Take the time and effort to make this an impressionable marketing tool so that it will talk to your ideal client, even when you’re not there.
Traditionally, the problem with most business cards is that they are boring. They have a logo, a name, a phone number, physical address, email address and website…that’s it. So no one really gives it a second look or wants to keep it around because it doesn’t really “say” anything. There’s nothing on that business card that makes someone stop and say, “I need to save this card because I’m going to need these services soon.”
Here’s how to ensure your business card isn’t thrown away or forgotten:
- Spend some time designing your new business card. Really take the time to make it look polished and include all the necessary information. (I’m always amazed when I get business cards without a physical address!) This isn’t the time for “do it yourself” by just using the software that comes with your computer to create a business card and print it on your home printer. Hire a graphic designer who can incorporate style and function into your business card.
- Don’t go cheap! Your business card shouldn’t have any other companies information printed on it. Your card is a reflection of you and your business, make sure it leaves a good impression. Spend a few extra dollars on the good card stock and color printing. It makes a big difference!
- Utilize the space of the entire card, both front and back, but don’t put too much info. Maximize the back of the card too by speaking directly to your ideal client. Consider printing your targeted tag line on the back of your business card, or a few open ended questions that speak to catch your ideal clients’ attention. You may also include an offer for the compelling freebie you have posted on your website to drive traffic there. When prospects see you as a solutions provider, they will keep your business card.
- Resist the urge to put a lot of information on your card, people simply won’t read it. Don’t overwhelm them with details right away, make them contact you for more information.
After you’ve designed a great business card and have them printed on high quality card stock, the next step to ensure your business card isn’t ignored is to follow simple business card etiquette. That is, don’t give your business card to a person unless they ask you for it.
One of the biggest mistakes people make when they are out networking and meeting people, is that they automatically shove their business card in the other person’s hand. They haven’t even had a chance to find out their name or what kind of business they are in and they are already “assuming” the other person “needs” them and their services.
Networking is as much about building relationships as it is about building business. But you have to have a good relationship first. Make sure to wait for someone to ask you for your nice new business card before you give it to them. You will be glad you did. This gracious gesture helps create a solid foundation for the beginning of a great relationship. And, it ensures that people will want to remember you and keep your card because of their positive experience with you.