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Every week, I maintain THE TEMPLATE, an award-winningWinner of the 2015 Plank Center Award (public relations org.) for commitment to mentorship. blog that's been viewed more than 1.5 million times by people all over the world. In every column, I provide step-by-step instruction to help you become a stronger communicator. Like I always say, "Write well, open doors!"

How to Make Sure No One Throws Out Your Business Card


Food, faith and a lot of hand-shaking.

On the same weekend, Portland announced the first-ever national food truck convention and Washington, DC welcomed top conservatives — including Sarah Palin — to the Faith and Freedom Coalition conference.

Food trucks and right-wing ideology? What could they possibly have in common?

Networking.

From the Pacific Northwest to the nation’s capital, everyone hands out business cards and hopes those rectangular pieces of paper leave an impression.

Some cards are incredibly creative and look like modern art. If you’re short on time or don’t have a big budget, there’s a much cheaper way to ensure your info stays in a person’s pocket — and out of the trash.

Write something on your business card.

Yep. It’s that simple.

Why scribble a quick note? Because writing on a business card breathes life into your contact information.

At a networking event, conference or convention, you end the day with a fat stack of business cards. Which ones stick around?

For starters, the cards of people you intend to track down later. After that, it’s the ones with special notes on the front or back. The recipient feels like your card is different since it features actual hand-writing. With a personal touch, it’s tough to toss out right away. Think of the strategy as a ‘stationary guilt trip.’

your business card
A business card made out of beef jerky is a delicious idea — except when the person eats your contact info. To be truly memorable, keep things simple and write a short note on a card made out of paper. (Photo: Mashable)

OK, so what could you write on the business card? Several options:

– an additional phone number or email address

– an extra little nugget based on your conversation

– a Twitter handle not already listed

– a Web site URL separate from the one already on the card

If you add a URL, the person will hopefully think: ‘When I get back to my computer, I am going to check out this site.’ At the very least, the site (and you) will be on his mind as he shuffles business cards in his hand throughout the day.

The goal: to have your contact info make the journey from a networking session all the way to the person’s desk.

So much power from such a little note.

Extra Credit

Add a short message to the card in front of the person. Then, he will see you physically put pen to paper and remember your note each time he looks at your card.

 

Do you have any business card tips?

Tell us in the comment section below!

 

Feature photo from Sean MacEntee (Flickr)

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