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How to Be a Business Card Ninja

How to Be a Business Card Ninja

By Pat Flynn on

Today I’m in Las Vegas getting ready for Blog World Expo. I can’t wait to meet everyone I’ve been friends with online who I have yet to meet in person, and everyone else who I’ve never even networked with before.

While I was going through my “list of things to bring to BWE”, the thought of business cards came across my mind, and honestly I had no idea if people were exchanging business cards anymore. I never once made any for my businesses because all of my networking has always been done online, but this was my first live blogging/online business event, so I decided to ask around.

Many people who have been to BWE in the past said that business cards would definitely be a good idea. There are literally tens of thousands of people in attendance all looking to grow their network, and it’s my guess that it would be pretty difficult for somebody to remember every single person they met. Heck, I forget people’s names after 30 seconds sometimes.

A business card is a great way to remind someone who you are and what you’re about at a later time, so I decided to print some out, just in case.

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know that I like to do everything I can to stand out from the crowd. I do what everyone else is doing, but try to put my own twist on it so I become a little bit more memorable. I decided to take the same approach with my business cards.

Size

Most people end up going with the standard 2″ x 3.5″ sized business card. I decided to try something a little different, so when people have a fat stack of business cards, mine will catch people’s attention. At least that’s the theory.

You have several options other than the standard size:

  • Chubby sized cards: 2.5″ x 3.5″
  • Skinny cards: 1″ x 3.5″
  • Square cards: 2″ x 2″
  • Custom Shapes

Custom shapes are cool and I’ve been handed a few in the past myself which I still remember. An art store near my college, for example, had business cards in the shape of an artist’s palette. Very cool, but unfortunately they are quite expensive.

I decided to go with the skinny 1″ x 3.5″ card, and save some paper while I’m at it.

😉

What to Put on the Card

Name, address, phone number and a logo.

Boring!

After watching Better Networking Productivity with Business Cards (an awesome Facebook video by Productive Strategies), I learned a few good tips for what should be included on a business card:

  • Always include a picture of you! A logo is okay, but a picture is better because you want people to remember who you are, and a picture will definitely help with that. I included the same picture that is shown on most of my profiles and comments on blogs and forums, just for some continuity.
  • A call to action or something to do from there. That’s right, you can include a call to action on your business card, just like we’re taught to do on everything else we post and publish online. You can tell people to call a certain number, visit a certain website or entice them with an offer too.

The video has a few more strategies, but a 1″ x 3.5″ card only has so much room.

So, what does my card look like?

Front

Business Card Side 1Back

Business Card Side 2

As you can see, I only included a little bit of information, and I did my best to put something sort of “mysterious” on the card to entice people to visit my blog. I blocked out the url in the above photo because I want to keep track of how many people from the expo actually visit my blog, but it basically points to a page that has a welcome video, an RSS subscription link, a link to my podcast, and an opt-in for for eBooks the Smart Way.

As far as the design itself, I did that on my own using photoshop (those skills from my architecture job are very handy!) and I purchased them from Zazzle.com. Again, I tried to keep it congruent with some of the colors and themes used here on the blog, as well as on my Twitter page, which as you can see I link to in my card.

I decided to place a link to my Twitter account here because most people will be using Twitter to stay updated on the latest Blog World Expo stuff by following the #BWE10 hashtag, and it’s a quick way for people to say hi to me after we’ve met.

Will This Be Worth It?

I have no idea. It all really depends on how many I hand out, because I think the cards do exactly what I want them to do. I hope this at least forces me to meet even more awesome people while I’m here at Vegas.

Although I know most of you who are reading this are probably not in a position to find printing business cards useful at this moment in time, I hope you can see the principles behind why I’ve chosen to create the kinds of business cards that I did and how I utilize them. Not just to stand out and be remembered, but also to take them through a journey where I get them to do exactly what I want them to do, which is visit my blog, learn more about what I do, and subscribe to my newsletter.

I’ll post an update of the event on Friday, hopefully with some pictures!

Cheers!

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