Business card: A powerful marketing tool

 In business card, Paper Print

Your business card is your single most important print marketing tool. Beyond the obvious sharing of contact information, it says a number of other things about you. The simple act of handing someone a card gives you a moment of connection with the other person, and what you communicate in that moment says more than “My name, phone number and address are.” Make your card serve your message.

Your card should reflect your brand.

The look and feel of the design should echo your company culture. Choose a single word that best describes your business: Local, friendly, creative, warm, patriotic, disciplined, clean, passionate, family, conservative, edgy; the word itself will evoke an image. Everything else should serve that image, from images to typography to color selection. A well-designed, quality card gives you instant credibility.

Make a statement.

People are handed business cards all the time. Business contacts may get hundreds in a year. Make sure yours doesn’t end up in the trash. Professional design, bright colors, quality paper, rounded corners and unique content are ways to keep your card in someone’s hands rather than in their garbage pail. Red is an especially helpful color; the eye is drawn to it instantly. Think about adding a photograph. Vertical designs are unusual and draw attention. Also consider giving your card a black or dark background; most cards are white, so the impact of reversed type makes your card more unique.

Include a call to action.

A special offer or activity for your prospect to complete makes your card interactive. Offer a “Free Consultation” or “Discount with this card.” Include incentives to visit your web or social media sites. If this kind of approach doesn’t fit your business or organization, include a useful or interesting fact, humorous quote, or statistic that relates to your business. Give the prospect something other than dry contact information to read when they look at the card. Don’t be afraid to use the back. Appointment cards are kept in wallets so people remember important dates, and loyalty cards are saved for weeks or months while people collect endorsements.

Take care of them.

This might seem obvious, but keeping your cards protected is important. A dirty, wrinkled or bent card says your image isn’t important to you. Treat yourself and your business with respect. If your address changes, get new cards printed. Don’t scratch out the old information and write on the old ones. Taking these steps help your prospect view you as a professional who cares about the impression you leave behind.

Hand your card out everywhere.

Post them on bulletin boards, leave them in drawing jars at restaurants, leave them in businesses you frequent (with permission, of course). Give them to people you talk to waiting in lines, at the grocery store, on the bus or at the gym. Make sure to take advantage of natural chances to distribute your cards, but don’t shove one in someone’s face uninvited; they’ll toss it at the first opportunity.

The business card is a powerful marketing tool that has been in widespread use since the 17th century. It isn’t going anywhere any time soon! Make sure your card is saying what you want people to hear, and it will help you grow your business.

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