Are you using business cards when networking? If not, you really should! A business card is principally designed to share your contact details with prospective clients when networking. But that card can also serve as a business tool; as an advocate for you and your business.
A card has a dual role beyond simply sharing your details. Firstly, a well thought out card has the potential to ignite a conversation. Secondly, a business card is the one tangible thing a person will take away from a chance meeting. Once an event is over and everyone begins curating their stack of collected cards, having a well thought-out business card presents you with the final opportunity to leave a lasting impression.
Crucially, as a tool it should serve to remind a person of your proposition and reflect the selling points of both you and your company.
In our previous article Top Tips For business Networking we discussed best practices for networking in general. Using business cards effectively is one of many good networking practices.
What makes a business card effective?
Even before design, the first thing I recommend is selecting a size that fits into a wallet or holder. Make it easy on the person taking your card, if they have to fold it or leave it in their pocket, chances are they could misplace it or simply trash it. The card must clearly show your contact details, this is essential. An obvious first requirement, but you’d be surprised how many cards do not show contact details clearly.
Choose a good quality printer
Cleverbug provided ours and their paper quality and ink is superb – even on our high resolution image. You also do not want a card that can bend easily. That instant impression about the quality of your card will permeate into their thoughts about your business.
An uncluttered thought-out design
Design and creativity adds further value to your business cards, it as an extension of your marketing. Having a clean and neat design gives a professional impression. When we designed our cards we made sure our company logo and contact details are clearly shown on the card, and we kept that space uncluttered. If someone is unable to figure out what you do from your company name, add a small line that perfectly encapsulates what your business does.
To add marketing value to your cards, you may want to challenge convention and add something unexpected. This should really depend on your industry. One possible example is adding QR codes to your cards. When I was working in the mobile app space, our company cards had QR codes, which linked to our contact details online.
A far more original idea belongs to Poul Nielsen, a certified personal trainer and fitness consultant in Toronto, Canada. Just reading his name is a light workout in itself!
For The Startup Magazine we added our own idea, by adding faces of a handful of successful entrepreneurs. We decided to try this out in an effort to have more memorable cards and have a conversation topic when networking.
Start-up Profile: Cleverbug
Cleverbug is creating a smart, savvy and simple way for you to get great business cards, flyers and any kind of promotional material designed, printed and delivered to your door.
Cleverbug offers a huge range of customizable design templates, free!
We are transforming a complicated service into something simple, that everyone can use. The online service from cleverbug is a highly cost effective alternative to traditional offline designers, marketing agencies and printers.
Cleverbug wants to put you in control of your business design and print needs, in a simple, clever and easy way!
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