By Ellen Coule
I’m taking a stand: business cards are dead. As they should be.
Allow me a moment to rant before I get into the good stuff, if you will.
Business cards SUCK. They’re outdated and flat out boring. They’re also extremely wasteful, environmentally hazardous, and just plain annoying.
I really don’t want your business card. It doesn’t tell me anything about you, and I feel wasteful just for taking it from you… so I usually won’t. (If I’m interested, I’ll often take a photo of it and hand it right back to you.)
Business cards just create more work for the person you’re handing them to. Now I have to manually input all of that pertinent contact info into my phone? As if! (Plus, now you’re banking on the hope that I don’t input the wrong digits – if I ever make the time to put it in my phone in the first place! Bad move.)
And, I don’t know about you, but I find it super sleazy when people just try to hand me (and everyone else in the room) their business card without taking even a moment to connect with me.
It feels like the real-life version of a Facebook poke: one-sided, confusing, and kinda creepy.
I think I speak for all proud millennials when I proclaim: BUSINESS CARDS ARE DEAD!
Just say no to business cards.
/ END RANT /
Okay, whew – now that I’ve gotten that off my chest…
Here are 3 things that provide a 100x better experience than your outdated business card:
Your own website
First of all, you can’t hand a business card to someone on the internet. What can you give them instead? Your website, I hope! Don’t have one? The best time to have a website is yesterday.
When you invest in your own website, it shows people you really mean business. And, to be quite frank, you don’t need to put in more than a day’s work to have a dope website.
If you’re serious about your business, get some virtual real estate by purchasing your own domain.
Do you NEED a website to have a successful business? Heck no.
Should you have a website anyway? Um, YEAH.
A website with a good domain name that’s easy for people to remember is key. Whatever you want people to know about you (such as –ahem– how they can give you their money in return for things you’re great at doing) should be listed on your website.
Next time you meet someone at a networking event and you want to keep in touch, don’t hand them your business card. Instead, connect with them on social media or via email and send them a personal follow-up with your website link.
Making a genuine connection and following up afterward will set you apart from the masses who are simply handing out business cards all night long.
If you’ve connected with someone and you truly want to stay in touch, send them your contact info via text message.
This accomplishes 3 things:
- (1) You get their phone number.
- (2) You get to follow up with them to stay in touch.
- (3) You can send your contact details straight to their phone so they have easy access to you.
I discovered this tip when I met a high-powered business executive at a conference last year. We had a great conversation about the future of the cannabis industry (I used to launch top products in the space and he owns multiple companies in various sectors).
When we decided to keep in touch to keep the conversation going, he asked me to text him. When I did, he shared his contact card with me.
This gives you the opportunity to do some really freakin cool things you could never do with a regular paper business card.
Check out my example below.
Notice that this “contact card” includes:
- my name
- my brand name
- a clear image of me
- my phone number (hidden for the purpose of this blog post)
- my best email address
- my website
- my birthday (which might make me end up in their phone’s calendar)
- and a direct link to schedule a call with me
If I wanted to, I could add even more calls-to-action, more links, and even my Skype name. It’s so versatile! You can even make multiple contact cards for yourself to send out a tailored experience to the person you met. For example, I have a second business, so I have another contact card with all the pertinent info if I want to connect with someone under that brand.
When you want to share this info, simply go to your contact card (in your Contacts section), choose “Share Contact”, and text it to your new acquaintance!
The real beauty of this tip is this: You’ve just made it so freakin easy for your new friend to save your contact info! They simply have to click “Create New Contact” at the bottom of your contact card, and it will quickly save all of your info to their phone.
When you make things difficult for people, you lose them. Use this tip to make it super easy for people to stay in touch with you – without requiring much of any work on their part!
Connect on social media
My first 2 tips are focused on getting your information into the hands of another person.
However, if you are genuinely interested in getting to know the other person, connecting with them on social media will give you an unparalleled way to keep in touch, build a long-term relationship, and learn about who they are & what they are interested in.
Once you’ve connected, you can slide into their DMs with a proper follow-up message.
But, for the love of the internet, don’t send a copy & paste template! Send them a real freaking message. Something super quick to let them know you enjoyed speaking to them and look forward to connecting again. Don’t be a bot, please… Say something authentic and you will stand out in the best way.
When something isn’t working, make a change!
If you’re wondering why you’re not having a great response from handing out your business cards, try these tips to make a lasting connection.
Ultimately, networking is all about building relationships. Don’t just pitch and run.
Have conversations, become genuinely interested in making a connection, and watch how your network begins to thrive.
Cheers to building your empire, LadyBoss!
– Ellen Coule
I was serious about the fact that you can have a dope website created in less than a day (even if you don’t have a domain, a logo, or high-quality images). In fact, I created the bulk of all of my websites in a day each, including LadyBossSocial.Club and Coule.Co.
Want to learn how to create your own website in a day?
Join as a VIP Member before March 31st, and you’ll get my Website In A Day Course for free!
You’ll be able to go at your own pace (at your convenience) or power through an afternoon and have a brand new website up and running, ready to proudly show off to the world. And you’ll get to keep it forever, so you can create as many new websites as your pretty heart desires! How’s that for a freebie? 😉