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5 Ways to Make the Most of Marketing With Business Cards

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5 Ways to Make the Most of Marketing With Business Cards

By Rieva Lesonsky, Guest Blogger
Published: January 16, 2013 Updated: January 20, 2016

Business cards? Didn't those go out with the dinosaurs? Actually, no. In fact, according to an Ipsos poll conducted last fall, business cards are still one of the most effective marketing methods available to small business owners. Surprisingly, 60 percent of the small business owners surveyed say they currently give out more business cards than they did five years ago.

How can you make your business cards even more effective?

1.      Make them memorable. Use design to make your card stand out from the pack. You can design your own business cards using templates at a host of websites. However, for not much more money, you can enlist a graphic designer to create a template for you. Ask around for a local designer or visit, or to find graphic designers.

2.      Focus on function. Don’t get carried away in your desire to make a card stand out. I still remember a metal business card someone gave me back in the 1980s. Why? Because I tossed it in my purse and one of the sharp corners tore a hole in the lining. Business cards in odd shapes, sizes or materials are often touted as a way to be memorable, but in reality, these cards often get tossed since they may be bulky or don’t fit into card-holders or files easily. Good-quality card stock and good design will make your cards stand out without resorting to gimmicks.

3.      Keep it simple. The purpose of a business card is to get someone to contact you, so focus on the information they’ll need to do so. While in the past you may have wanted to include your business name, address, fax number, etc., today business cards allow for a lot more customization. Depending on how you want to be contacted, you may simply want to have your name and title, your business name, your email address, your URL and your cell number on the front of the card. (That’s assuming, of course, that when they go to your URL they can find all the other information, like address, landline phone number and fax.) Are you a Twitter maniac? Then put your Twitter handle on there, too. If you want to include lots of other information, you can put it on the back.

4.      Share them. You’ve got your cards; now give them out—everywhere. The average U.S. small business owner distributes 40 business cards a month, the Ipsos survey found. And three in 10 say they “always” give out their cards when they meet someone new in either a business or personal setting. Carry plenty of cards with you at all times. Whether you’re in the gym locker room, in line at the movies or at a cocktail party, you never know where you’ll meet a prospect or potential partner.

You can also:

·         Include cards in correspondence

·         Include them with invoices or bills

·         Include them in packaging when you ship a product

·         Give someone two cards: one for them to keep and one for them to pass on as a referral. (Ask first. Don’t just assume they’re willing to pass your cards out for you.)

·         Put cards in public places where your clients are likely to visit or ask if you can leave them at other (noncompeting) businesses

5.      Organize them. The cards you collect are as important as the ones you give out—75 percent of small business owners keep contacts’ cards at their desks for easy reference. While I myself still have a Rolodex, you can speed things up by using tools such as the Neat Desk Scanner to scan business card information or import it into your digital contact list quickly and easily.

About the Author:

Rieva Lesonsky
Rieva Lesonsky

Guest Blogger

Rieva Lesonsky is CEO and President of GrowBiz Media, a media company that helps entrepreneurs start and grow their businesses. Follow Rieva at and visit to sign up for her free TrendCast reports. She's been covering small business and entrepreneurial issues for more than 30 years, is the author of several books about entrepreneurship and was the editorial director of Entrepreneur magazine for over two decades


Excellent advice. Choose a business card made of quality paper stock and designed to impress your customers because your business card is a reflection of your business.
Excellent advice. Choose a business card made of quality paper stock and designed to impress your customers because your business card is a reflection of your business.
One of the most annoying things is non standard size business cards. People say they are memorable and you're right - I do remember people who give them to me. I remember them as a person who'd rather inconvenience me to get themselves ahead.
Business cards tend to be nonetheless probably the most efficient advertising strategies accessible for you to smaller business masters. This can be a superior indication associated with a very easy technique to marketplace your business.
Small business playing cards develop into your crucial portion associated with advertising regarding every company . making business cards can be a vital issue as 1 need to pick out those small business playing cards producers whom not only design and style .Your goal of a organization credit card should be to obtain a person to be able to get in touch with you, and then make business enterprise.
One thing to add- avoid "glossy" business cards. When you give your card to someone that is actually interested in you, they often want to write a note on your card to remember why they wanted to connect. A lot of glossy cards are really hard to write on. Opt for a matte card instead.
Good to know that business cards are also in today. I used to think that with so many technological advancements the cards must have lost its sheen. Thanks for correcting my view.
This is a good reminder of a very easy way to market your business. We use business cards daily in the insurance industry.
good starting points for someone who has to make business cards for the first time. like others have said, make your cards unique - to set yourself apart from every other plain rectangle card. If you have a restaurant business, for example, why not make the card look like the food menu on one side? Perhaps the card could be shaped differently unlike the traditional rectangle, and into something food/menu related. If your business card is artistic enough, people may keep it to post on their wall because it looks good.
As my organization provides me cards and limits what is included, I affix a QR code on the reverse that links to my Linkedin profile. I find this very effective in contacts learning more about me.


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