Many people disregard the importance of business cards.
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Sure, we all have them, but good do they really do? Think about how YOU treat the ones you get from others…you might follow up with some, but many probably end up in the trash without a second thought. The fact is, business cards can be a very effective tool to use to build both prospects and recognition in your community.
Let's look at 5 ways to use your business cards more effectively.
1. BRING THEM!
It's true, your business cards cannot help you if you don't bring them with you. This may seem like a no-brainer, but at each and every networking event that has ever been held, there are usually a few people that simply don't bring cards. They say they ran out, but if that is the case, ORDER MORE! You need them on hand, always. Don't force them on people, just be prepared when the moment arrives.
2. Mail them to potential prospects
A simple but effective marketing tool is to mail a few of your business cards along with a short note to prospects in your area. Ask them to mail some of their own so that you can cross-promote. This is a great way to build relationships and start conversations.
3. Leave the back blank
So many people rush to put marketing messages all over their business cards and fill up all the available space. The reality is having a blank back to your business card might make even more sense. You can leave a little message about something you talked about with the person you are giving the card to, leave an additional contact or email, or anything else that might be of value to them in remembering you. In turn, when you get someone else's card, if they have a blank back, you can make notes yourself to help you better remember the conversation.
4. Give away 2 or 3, not just one
Giving out 2 or 3 cards and asking them to pass it along to a friend doesn't hurt. It is a good practice to ask for several from someone else as well. Tell them that you want to keep their info on hand at all times, but if you meet someone who may need their services, you want to be able to give them an extra card. Most will oblige. If someone says they can't spare the cards, know that they really don't understand the idea of referrals in the first place!
5. Consider unique, eye-catching designs
How well or unique your card is designed can definitely play a role in how others perceive you and your business as well as how many of them follow up with you. Doing something to make yours stand out, such as making it plastic, making it a folding card, etc can help you to stand out against the sea of simple black print on white business cards that pervade the networking scene.
Marketing, no matter how big or small, is supposed to do one thing: Get you more prospects and clients. Your business cards are no exception. Follow the tip above and make your business cards part of your proactive marketing campaign and over time, you WILL see positive results.