Business Cards – Your Silent Sales Partner

Business Cards are a valuable tool.

     No business person should be without having a business card to hand to prospects or contacts. It’s more professional and more convenient than writing out your contact information for a person you’ve just met.

But having a business card is only half the job. It’s what you do with it that really matters…

You could be wasting the potential of your business cards if you don’t treat it like the key marketing tool that it is.

Research suggests you will look at someone’s business card at least 4 times:

  1. When they give it to you
  2. When you return from an event and go through the people who you’ve met
  3. When you file it, scan the details or discard it
  4. When you want to contact this person or pass the card on to someone else

Remember your business cards is all that’s left of you when you’ve met a new contact, talked with them and moved on to the next person, so you should make your card memorable (for the right reasons)

Tips for great business cards include:

Use of a photo – of yourself, your product, your premises. You will be much more memorable with a professional headshot photo of yourself.

Call to action – what do you want people to do with your card? Call you? Invite them to your website? Request a free brochure? Respond to a special offer?

Share useful information – perhaps on the reverse of your card, a series of bullet points with tips or questions about your field of speciality will show that you really know your business.

Be professional – Cheap, lightweight, homemade business cards can do untold damage to you and your business. If you’re not prepared to be professional in your first exchange with a new business contact, what kind of message are you giving across?

Spend a little extra and invest in top quality, professionally designed and printed card that will become your silent sales partner and carries on working for you long after you’ve left the room.

 Use a logo – Once the preserve of the big corporations, logos have become vital to businesses of all sizes to portray a professional image, and distinctive branding. A logo and branding will strengthen the impact of your business card.

Be memorable – A catchy phrase, memory hook or USP on your card ensures people associate your company name with your particular product or service.

Be consistent with design – Ensure your layout, typefaces and use of colour flow through from your business card to stationery, website, signage, social media, advertising and all of your marketing material.

Always carry your cards with you – Avoid those moments that you will regret, when you’re asked for your card and don’t have any with you.

Never leave home without your business cards.

You never know when you might strike up a conversation and have made a business opportunity for yourself – the queue at the petrol station, doctor’s waiting room, sports event, family function – the possibilities are endless.

Have some in your car, your wallet, your briefcase, your jacket pocket, your desk.

Ask for 2 cards – great networkers ask for more than one card – it shows that you are thinking about them and not only taking a card for you but for someone you can refer them to. By the same token, when you exchange cards with people you’ve met, give them 2 cards as well.

Spread the word – How might your business grow if you can give 5 cards a day for the next 12 months? From putting them in envelopes with payments and letters, to leaving them on restaurant tables with your tip, to chance meetings when you’re out and about, there are many opportunities to share your message.

Some people say to me “I don’t need business cards, everyone has me on their phone”. Being on their iphone address book is not the same thing at all!

A business card is official, it represents you. It does exactly what it says on the tin. It shows you are a business, and you mean business!

Remember that your business cards and the memory of you is all that’s left when you leave the room. Make your silent sales partner work for you.

by Vincent Goode