A business card might only be a few inches of cardstock, but that small piece of ink and paper plays a critical role in business networking. Itâs this card that you leave behind to remind someone that they met you and that you are someone worthy of their time and connection â but itâs also small enough to fit in oneâs palm, meaning youâre pretty limited by space with what you can say.Â
How do you develop a catchy business card that sums up the essence of YOU? Here are some ways to make an impression with the right information:
- Less is more â Intrigue is everything, according to message expert Laura Allen of thepitchgirl.com. âMy basic rule of thumb is, âclear and concise equals cash; vague and verbose equals trash,ââ Allen said.
- Be catchy â Coming up with a compelling catchphrase is the best way to make an impact that will draw the receiver in. âIf I meet 40 people at a conference, I donât have time to go back and look at their resumes,â she said. âBut if somebody gives me their business card and the front of it says, âclosed a $5.5 million deal from a cold call,â â¦ thatâs something worth following through on.â
- Be concise â While you should have a good message, make sure to keep it short. âItâs all about filtering down to the most important point,â Allen said. âYou take the 15-second pitch â four sentences â and make that even smaller.â
- Looks are everything â Remember, business cards are visual â much more so than a resume of LinkedIn profile. Therefore, rules of good design apply: using graphics to tell a story, paying attention to color theory (particularly the emotional responses attached to the hues you choose), and embracing white space as your friend. The most successful advertising campaigns often include iconography. You donât necessarily need a logo on par with Volkswagen or Pepsi to make an impact, but do try to determine a visual brand that ties in with what youâd like to be known for the most.
- Go pro â Just as design matters, production is important for a quality business card. Donât buy a packet of cardstock and print these off at home! There are countless design and printing vendors online who can create professional business cards for a great price. Start with a small quantity at first â this will allow you to adapt your card as you feel out how effective the first model is.
Take time to look at the business cards youâve received. Which do you like? What is it about these cards that speaks to you? Spending time to deconstruct what people have done well (or not) in the past will help you create a winning business card that leaves the right impression with those you come across while you network your way to success.