Lately, I’m a bit burned out on business cards. I think they’re important tools. I don’t think we can manage our identity transfer ONLY online, but I’m just a bit tired of handing them out. The reason? Every time I give someone a business card, I have about a 70% chance of receiving someone else’s dumb email newsletter that I didn’t opt into receiving. Or, I’ll get a pitch. If you’ve ever done this to me, please reconsider before doing it to someone else in the future. Please?
A business card is the start of a relationship, not permission to sell to me.
Lately, I notice that lots of people use various online services to make digital versions of a business card. That feels like you’re giving away an opportunity. That’s like buying the store cards they sell at Staples or OfficeMax or wherever. Instead, why not make your own business cards.
Want to see mine? Chris Brogan’s business card.
Well, that was easy.
In person, I hand out paper cards. When I’m not being cheeky, my cards have the following traits:
- My name is the biggest element on the card. Why? Because in a meeting, when my card will be sitting on a table in front of someone who’s trying to remember who I am, they will see my name and feel less embarrassed.
- My PREFERRED method of contact is what I put on the card. In my case, I’ve stopped handing out my phone number. I loathe the phone. I opt not to give it. Is that limiting some times? Sure. I don’t care.
- My idea on how I can help you. Most cards talk about how awesome the giver is. I want you realizing how awesome I think YOU are.
- Space to write. It’s amazing how important it is to have room to write on the back of a card.
What’s not there? Every social media platform I ever joined. Every URL in the world. It’s not a phone book. It’s a card. It’s a marker.
A business card is the start of a relationship.
Your mileage may vary. That’s just where I am right now. You?