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Marketing Your Products
Does your business card build your brand?
July, 2007

Are you losing credibility and damaging the brand of your business through lack of attention to one of your critical marketing tools in your business, your business card? Discover how your business card can enhance your brand and ensure that you stand out from your competition.

When we are at a networking event or meeting a client, it's almost guaranteed that we will exchange business cards.

Very often, without realising it, we are assessing our colleague by their business card, and asking ourselves:

- Is the business card professionally designed? - Is the business card crumpled at the edges? - How does the weight of the business card feel - substantive or flimsy? - Does it look like the business card has been made on their PC - or worse still does it have a message at the bottom of the card to say where you too can access free cards?

I have collected thousands of business cards over my time in business and every time I am sub-consciously assessing the professional status of them and their business when I receive their business card.

We review someone's card at least 3 times:

1. once on receiving it

2. a second time when we put it in our pocket, folio or bag as we leave the meeting

3. and a third time as we make a decision to keep it, transfer the information into our data bank or bin it!

Our business card is a critical part of our marketing collateral and even if you can not afford to put in place other marketing materials, short changing the investment in developing a professional business card is definitely not something we should do if we are looking to develop a professional brand.

When meeting someone in person, alongside how you present yourself in person, your business card can enhance or devalue the strength of your brand and how you are perceived by others.

Here are four tips to enhance your brand through your business card:

1. Ensure that you work with a professional designer to develop your business card. It's not whether you like the design, it's about whether it will represent your business effectively and professionally to your target audience

2. Ideally have your business card printed on 400g card and by a traditional lithographic printer. Yes it is more expensive than digital printing, but the quality is worth investing in and a litho print gives far greater definition to your corporate identity and the colour of your brand

3. Matt laminate your card on the reverse for extra stability and style. Don't laminate both sides as people will not be able to write on your card - we often note down things to remember about the person we met on their card

4. Use the valuable real estate on the back of your card to provide a call to action, for example, how to access your white paper or special report on your web site.

Take action:

Over the next 30 days, take the opportunity to review the business cards of your contacts and assess their card against yours.

1. What can you learn from other peoples business cards?

2. How could you take those learnings and further enhance your business card?

Your goal is to ensure that your business card is a positive reflection of both you and your company, and it represents a strong brand.

Invest in your business card, distribute it widely and you will be sure of expanding your professional success.

by Krishna De

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