Business cards are a snapshot of your company, and people will get an impression of your company from the type of business card you have. There are certain rules to follow when dealing with business cards. Here are the best practices for having great business card etiquette for your business.
Do: Keep Your Cards Up-to-Date
Make sure you reprint your cards and update your cards in a regular manner with the latest logo, phone numbers, and information. This makes the cards presentable. Good business card etiquette involves regularly updating them. Never hold on to one set of business cards for too long. Get rid of outdated business cards when they expire. This way, you make sure you don’t get confused between the old and new cards.
Don’t: Write on Them
There are exceptions to this rule, but you generally want to avoid writing on your own business cards. You should never add information by hand in an attempt to save money. Unless they are extra notes specific to the customer, avoid writing on the card. Writing on someone else’s cards is fine as long as it is relevant and doesn’t interrupt the meeting. Striking out old phone numbers or addresses and adding information to your own card, unless customer specific, makes you look unprofessional.
Do: Carry Business Cards With You
Never leave your home or office without a good stock of business cards. You never know when the next business opportunity will present itself. The main purpose of your business cards is to get business, after all. What’s the point of leaving them sitting around in your office? Be sure to have a stack of cards in your car, wallet, briefcase, office, etc. It is best to store some in your wallet for emergency purposes. You never want to lose business opportunities and embarrass yourself due to the lack of cards.
Don’t: Carry Them Loosely in Your Pockets
Having a stack of cards sitting in your shirt or pant pocket is ill-advised. This is poor business card etiquette and your cards could get crumpled or ruined by being in your pocket. Remember that these aren’t playing cards, they are business cards. Even the way you present them to someone else should be professional. You should purchase a good business card holder where you can store your cards. This keeps them fresh and clean.
Do: Give Others Your Cards
As we have said before, your business cards are meant to generate business. Just carrying them around won’t help. You have to be active and ready to hand them out to people. If you’re waiting to meet someone, give the receptionist your card so they can clearly announce your name and company to the other party. Whenever you offer someone your card, always have the front side up and the words facing in their direction.
Don’t: Start a Conversation with Them
Never hand over your card to the other person right off the bat. This is horrible business card etiquette. You don’t want to relinquish your card too early or you will come off as pushy and forward. Ideally, you should wait until someone asks for your card to provide it. If not, you can offer it after the appropriate amount of time has passed. The other person will usually offer you their own card in return. When this happens, take a minute to look at it on both sides instead of immediately putting it away.
Do: Offer Your Cards in Person
Handing someone your business card in person makes them feel important. Build a rapport with the person and hand them your card. You can also answer any doubts or questions they have. The proper way to offer your card would be to politely ask them beforehand. Say something to the tune of “May I offer you my card?”. If they accept, you can segue the conversation to talk about your company. Remember that business cards are a two-way affair, so always swap cards with the other person. This is proper business card etiquette.
Tip for handing out double-sided cards – Show both sides of the card before handing it out. Grip it tightly before letting it go so that a few more seconds are used up in scanning the card.
Don’t: Leave them at Random Places
Leaving your cards floating around on tables or tacked to boards decreases their value. Sure, someone may notice the card and pick it up, but you won’t be available to answer questions or give more of an explanation about your company. In fact, you shouldn’t even ask your assistant to hand out your cards. If you want people to view you as a professional business person, introduce yourself and your company by presenting your card professionally.
Do: Follow These Business Card Etiquette Tips
This is a competitive world and everyone is trying to prove why their company is the best. Cards are meant to promote yourself as well as your company. A business card could either make or break your company. Keep these suggestions in mind the next time you meet a fellow business person. We also have an article for those unsure of whether they should buy single-sided or double-sided business cards.
Don’t: Settle for Less
Follow these eight guidelines regarding business card etiquette and you will well be on your way to becoming a business card master. Now all you need to do is craft the perfect business card. Do you need help designing or printing your business card but can’t figure out where to go? Never fear, because PrintStop is here! We guarantee great quality and a speedy delivery.
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