Don't overlook this small but powerful tool
Like me, you probably realize that social media, LinkedIn and letter campaigns can’t do it all for your business or career. Networking is a necessary evil for your success.
Perhaps you’ve practiced your elevator speech, smiling and extending that ever firm hand shake over and over and over. You’re sure that the on-line networking Webinar has armed you with everything you need to whorl into that crowded room and command attention. You got it all down and you’re feeling confident!
And yet, after handing out mounds business cards and “connecting” so well with professionals from all types of businesses -- the phone still hasn’t sang the happy song you programmed in for the ring tone.
Could it be your cards were lost?? Or worse yet, ignored or forgotten??
Well, believe it or not in this world of tablets and smart phones, the legendary BUSINESS CARD still plays a key role in connecting with our prospective and current customers/clients.
Five characteristics of a productive and effective business card:
Eliminate words and images that either confuse or detract. Quickly glance at a number of cards to see what catches your eye and what you remember. Your card should not have any distractors that can dominate your prospects mind except those that are key to the communication. The size, color and font of the words you want remembered are critical.
Think carefully about the words you add, One card I recently acquired carried the tag line: "energetic bikini wearer" -- for a middle-aged female career coach. Now when my husband was glancing through my stack of cards, he busted out laughing and said he wasn’t sure what kind of careers she coached. An hour later for fun I asked him if he remembered that “card” -- all he could recall was an image of a “bikini wearer” sunning on the beach! Now this is could be a statement on my husband’s mindset (and he wasn't the target market for her) ... but it also demonstrates how images and words can either add or detract from your overall message and brand.
A good rule of thumb is: When you think about adding something to your card, ask "Is this critical"? Will the people I want to do business with understand it? For example, if you are in a business where it's important for people to recognize you, then a picture is appropriate.
Test! One last thought, given the potential positive and negative impacts a business card can have, it is well worth your time to print a couple of drafts and test them out on friends, colleagues and even potential clients. Have some of your test cases study them before offering their impressions and suggestions. Then have some folks quickly glance at your card and ask them what they saw first, what they remembered, and their overall impression.
Details, effort, and feedback are always key in any successful adventure and even a little thing like your business card can help along the way! Compare your cards to the items on the list before you order a new supply.
If you have additional Business Card “Golden Rules” you've learned along the way, please add them!
For more tips,check out our post on following up....
Thanks for reading and sharing!
Not sure if your business card is working for you? Contact us for a free business card evaluation.
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We attempt to pass along insights that can help your business or give you a smile.