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How To Use Business Cards To Network And Market Your Business

by Linda Elizabeth Alexander

You've had one thousand of the finest, most eye-catching business cards printed. Now, what do you do with them?

Networking with business cards is one of the most cost effective means of marketing your business and yourself.

Get those business cards out!

Don't leave them sitting in the box, they do you no good there. Get them into the hands of your prospects! If you think of your business card as a mini-billboard for your company, you'll realize that you need people to see it in order for it to be effective. Here are a few ideas to get you started...

1. Keep them in your pocket, purse, briefcase, and wallet, on your desk, and at the reception area of your office.

Leave some in your car. Always have them on hand so you can introduce yourself to new people when the moment is right. They should be a necessary part of your routine before you leaving home every day. When checking for your wallet and keys, check for a stack of business cards too. Keep replenishing your supply.

2. Store your cards in a nice holder so they don't get bent.

Keeping your business cards in a stylish case makes for a better presentation when you give your cards out. Business card cases come in all shapes sizes and materials. Choose one that fits your personality!

Likewise, treat others' cards well when you accept them. For example, spend a few moments reading the card closely before you put it away. You won't impress the person by mishandling their business card. If your contact information should change, have new cards printed immediately. Writing in your new email address or phone number leaves a bad impression.

3. Place your business cards on bulletin boards at local restaurants, supermarkets, libraries, and your children's schools.

At your place of business, have a bulletin board where others can post their cards in return for passing out your cards to others. If you see a fishbowl offering a drawing for a prize, throw your business card in. Somebody important might see it and contact you.

4. Include business cards with all of your correspondence, including bills you pay.

You never know who might open the mail that day. If realtors can sell houses this way, why can't you generate business the same way? If you ship products, for example, include a card with every package. Send business cards with all thank you notes and letters you send out. Include your contact information in your e-mail signature as well. It serves as an electronic business card.

5. Use them as scrap paper when you need to jot down a note.

Instead of a napkin, use the back of your business card to write in your cellphone number. "This is my direct line," you might say, making the prospect feel important and giving him or her a reason to keep your card.

6. Give people a reason to hold on to your card.

Include something unique on the back of it—a calendar, a list of your services, important measurements, or anything relevant to your industry. You could also print a coupon on it, and ask them to return the card with their order, so again they have a reason to keep your card. For more ideas of what to include, please see "Power Words for Business Cards".

7. As a business owner or manager, have business cards printed for all staff members, right down to the lowest ranking person.

The novelty of the cards for those who usually don't have them will entice employees to hand them out. At the same time, you'll make them feel appreciated. Your employees are part of your network, so use their networks to generate business for your company.

8. Use your business cards to introduce yourself to prospects you meet at networking functions, in the park or at your children's soccer games.

However, don't be pushy. Make sure the time is appropriate. One way to do this is to ask for the other person's card. He or she will likely ask you for your card in return. Another idea is to hand out 2 or 3 cards at a time—one for the person you meet, and extras for him or her to hand out to referrals (offering to do the same would be the polite thing to do here). When you go to the doctor or dentist, present your card to the receptionist to announce your presence.

Linda Elizabeth Alexander helps business people get great business results through effective business card marketing. You can get more free articles and order business cards online at GreatFX Business Cards.


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Monday, 19 Mar 2018 01:04 AM


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