Offline Marketing Success Strategy – Hand out your business card! BUT, BUT —>>> Make SURE You Have a Call to Action AND a Strategy!
Many business owners order business cards, then they never hand them out. Amazing isn’t it? Why waste money on business cards if you’re not going to use them. Even if they are the “free version” (which by the way you probably should not use those for anything anyway) you still pay postage, so why not give them out to appropriate people.
In order to make sure that you actually use these valuable marketing tools here are some rules to follow:
Keep them with you always — Get a nice carrying case, get one for your cards so they are simple to find in order to give out, and also get one to house cards given to you. If you have a nice case for both sets of cards people will be impressed that you’re not going to lose their card and will be less likely to ignore yours.
Insert one in every mailing — Every time a letter, a bill, or other information leaves your office or home put a business card in. Usually someone, a gate keeper, opens the mail and you never know when what your business card says will attract them.
Ask for other people’s cards — Always ask, in every chance meeting, if an acquaintance has a business card. There are two reasons: It gives you a chance to give them yours, and every contact you make, even if they’re not interested might know someone who is interested.
Give out two at a time — Give everyone you give a business card to, two cards, and ask them to pass the second one on if they ever have the opportunity. Tell them to write their name on the back and you’ll give them a discount off your service or you’ll know to send business their way too if they’re referring you. Tell them if they ever need more, just ask.
Talk to strangers — Always talk to people in front of you in line, or in back of you, or at the bookstore, or before and after meetings. These are always networking opportunities. Ask them what they do, and listen. They will ask you too, then, you can exchange cards.
Follow up — Once you’ve given and received cards make sure to follow up with them. Most cards have email addresses, send them a friendly email, which of course has your signature to your website. Likely they’ll click it, and join your mailing list if only out of curiosity at first. If appropriate don’t just say you’ll “do lunch” with someone you meet, actually do it. Likely it will have to be you that initiates it, so go to it. Follow-up is where most business owners fall down. They fail at the follow up. Don’t miss this valuable step.
Be sure to check out my video about follow up plans:
Be creative — Lastly, try to create a business card that is creative enough that someone is interested when they read it. Today it is not very expensive to have very artistic and effective cards made that truly get the word across of what you do. Remember there is a front and a back to the card. This little card needs to help the receiver remember who you are and what you do for a long time.
Now for the challenge – how many cards can you hand out in a day? In a week? In a month? Make a log and note who you give them to and how many go out. Track it for a week and the increase the number by 20%, meet your challenge and the increase another 20%. If you follow up with each of these new contacts you should see an increase in your business volume.
Challenge your friends and colleagues too! Share the challenge and see WHO gives away the most!!
Think about it — you hand out 5 cards per day. That’s a total of 35 cards in a week. If you have compelling offer that generates a 10% conversion rate — which is conservative, that’s 3.5 new leads per week. If just one converts to a new client — that is 52 new clients per year from handing out your business card. If your new client is worth typically $1000 per year —-(drum roll) –> yes, that is increased business of $52,000 per year. That might be a high estimate for some, but for others that is low.
I talked with a business owner the other day that had an average client value of $4500. Now if she adds one new client per week that is an increase of $234,000 per year. You can see the value of handing out business cards. But this only works if you have created a complete marketing strategy – Learn the complete strategy.