New Year/New Business Card: How Can You Network Without Business Cards?

At recent networking/professional events I was startled when I asked for a person’s business card and heard “sorry I don’t have any.” Some people said they didn’t have any on them, some said they were just starting/changing their business and so didn’t have one yet.

Everyone should have a business card or at least a contact card. If you are starting out and don’t have a professional identity yet – and a brand is always a work in progress – at least have a card with your name, phone number and email address. If you have multiple businesses, professional identities or interests have a business card for each one.

multi-color business cards

Business cards are essential for networking. Well-designed business cards are essential for a professional image

Business Card Content and Design

I have gone through several versions of my business card before I found one that really worked. And as I look at mine I am thinking of some fine-tuning I can do to it to bring it up to date.

Updating your business card can include:

  • Add your cell phone number, if appropriate.
  • Add or subtract a professional association logo when necessary.
  • Change your tag line or slogan to match how your business has evolved or to better describe how you help people solve their problems.
  • Update your font – like anything in design, popular font styles change too. You want the professional image of your business card to project that you stay current with the latest information in your field.
  • Consider adding a QR code and directed to a website landing page or special offer page.

It doesn’t have to be perfect.

It doesn’t have to be expensive. There are several online business card services that can print-up 100 cards for you at little-to-no cost.

Business Card Access When You are Networking, Anytime

Where do you stash your business cards so you will always have them with you?  If you switch purses or bags, have a stash in every one.

Ideally you want something you can easily pull out of a pocket or have in-hand while you network. This makes sharing cards so much easier and adds to your professional appearance.

Business cards bundled with a rubber band is a no-no. A business card case is best. It can be made of leather, wood, metal or plastic. Make sure it is easy to use (no fumbling), holds lots of cards – yours and the cards you will receive – and supports your professional image or brand.

Home Office Launching Pad: Storage for Your Office On-The-Go

For quick exits from your office you need a “launching pad.”

  • This should be near the door and
  • Has space for your purse and/or brief case.
  • Your small stash of business card (the bigger box from the printer goes into a drawer or closet storage self or bin.)
  • You can place you cellphone charger there quick re-charging and adding to your bag or pocket as you go out the door.

If you want some inspiration check out these cool business cards. Note: these cards are for people in creative fields like graphic design and marketing and may not be appropriate for your field or brand. Take a look any way, sometimes the most extreme ideas can get you out of your rut of same-old-same-old thinking.

photo by spec-ta-cles