Laissez Faire Attitudes Toward Business Cards

By Mike Maddaloni on Friday, July 10, 2009 at 04:00 AM with 3 comments

photo of Dunkirk Systems, LLC business card holderAfter reading Emily Brackett’s series of blog posts over at the Design Advances Success blog about online printing and namely printing of business cards I have been thinking quite a bit about business cards and observations I have made over the past few months, which are not really different from ones I have made over all the years I have been in the working world.

About the business card itself:

May be your sole physical presence – In some cases, your business card is the only real physicality of your business. As many business are virtual or home-based, other than computer equipment a business card is the only real-world tangible item that shows you exist.

Business cards are cheap – Compared to other costs of running your business, the cost of designing and printing business cards is relatively inexpensive, whether you go with a commercial or online printer.

A business card is not a contract – Why would I state this? Read on and you’ll see why.

When you add people to the mix of business cards, here are some unfortunate observations I have made:

Some people don’t have business cards at all – I don’t know how any times I have been to a networking event and a person tells me they don’t have business cards in any way, shape for form. They will proceed to ask me if they are expensive to order, and where should they order them. Some are embarrassed, but most simply have a “whatever” attitude.

“I just ran out of cards” – This is another think I hear. Business cards are small, and fit neatly in a pocket, wallet or purse. If you have them, why not make sure you have enough, especially at a business event? I keep a business card holder on my desk, as pictured, to remind me to keep plenty on hand.

Someone says they ran out of cards but they just don’t want to give you one – This ties into my statement above about a business card not being a contract. I believe some people think if they give someone a card, they have entered into some form of relationship they could never get out of. From my past experience, I hear from less than 1% of the people I give business cards to.

Poor quality business cards – Where the design of a card is subjective more than objective, I have received cards that are either physically damaged or simply don’t have any contact information for a person. Just putting a Web site URL on a card may be creative, but it does not make a personal connection.

If you don’t believe me, Jason Jacobsohn has no shortage of articles on business cards and networking on his blog Networking Insight.

Spending a little time on creating a clean, clear and professional business card will go a long way towards your success in networking and business.

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