You can have a business card that's useless or one that gets you clients. Which do you want? Your business card should be considered a serious sales tool, something that someone will look at and get a very good idea not only at what you do, but what you can do for them.
If you've got just one chance to make an impression (in person or not) and you've got the space, use it well. Make sure people know what you do, really DO, when they read your business card. Give them a compelling reason to call you to talk about working together. Or perhaps you want them to visit your website or sign up for your ezine (e-mail newsletter). The idea is to get prospects in ACTION, just by using your card.
Here's an example for you: I got a call from a prospect a while back, saying she was ready to work with me to help her attract new paying clients. She wanted to talk to me because she needed to see exactly how I worked and what my rates were. She had her credit card in hand and was ready to start.
The funny thing is, we'd never met. She wasn't referred by any of my clients or colleagues. Instead, she had found my card in a doctor's office close to 50 miles away. Now, I can ASSURE you I had never been to that doctor's office and I hadn't gone to that part of the state in over a year, but somehow my card found her and compelled her to want to work with me. That card probably cost me no more than 10 cents. Not bad for a return on investment on a marketing piece and the fact that I wasn't even there in the first place!
OK, so what should you put on your business card to make it Client Attractive in a networking situation? It should obviously have your phone number(s), every way to reach you, and can even have a set of PULL marketing questions on the back that invite the reader of the card to consider working with you. It's recommended that you add your tagline to the card. And use the back of it if you can!
My business card also prompts colleagues to refer potential clients to me even though we'd only met once at a workshop I've given or at a networking meeting. The information on the back allows the people holding the card to self-qualify or screen themselves as to whether or not they are an ideal client for me. It gives referral sources ways of describing what you do clearly and effectively when talking to others about you. It has an invitation to call, which can make all the difference between getting new clients from your card and not.
The objective should be to have a business card that has your ideal prospect say, "Wow! I need you!" when they've read your card. The key is to keep it legible, but to have real Client Attractive information there, so that it works as part of your sales force, even when you're not there to sell for yourself.
Your Assignment: Ask yourself: What does my business card say to my prospects? How do I differentiate myself from all of my competitors with my business card alone? Am I actually attracting new business because of it? Is there a call to action, an invitation to do something specific, a compelling offer, or a point of differentiation that makes me stand out?
Also ask yourself: What are people I network with REALLY doing with my business card once they go home from where they met me? Is it going in the circular file (i.e., the garbage) because they can't tell what I really do for a living and what I can do for them?
Business cards are an underestimated marketing tool, one that you will use most often to get new business. Instead of using a basic (boring) card that's essentially useless, it's time to create one that gets clients to call YOU.