The Art of Exchanging Business Cards
Let’s review the timing and gesture in which you should exchange business cards to make the impact you desire with new contacts.
When meeting a new business contact or potential customer, there are certain points during your initial interaction that are the perfect time for exchanging business cards without coming across as pushy, or as if you are trying too hard to sell something.Exchanging business cards.
If the person you are meeting is someone who you have planned to meet or are meeting at a conference or business function, where it is the expected behavior to exchange business cards, then exchanging business cards while introducing yourself is fine.
On the other hand, if you are meeting or encountering someone where the encounter has nothing to do with business, it is usually best to exchange or offer your business card at the end of your meeting, just before parting ways. This way presenting your business card is seen as a gesture of keeping in touch, rather than an immediate intent to make a business deal.
It is important to never force your business card on someone. Giving someone your business card just for the sake of doing it will not win you a new customer. In fact, it can be a turnoff and cause you to appear too salesy. If the opportunity to present your business card does not feel like a natural one, then you might be better off saving the card for someone else. If it is the first time you meet someone and the encounter was short and had nothing to do with business you might not hand out a business card, but if another encounter in the future allowed a deeper connection to develop, you might offer a business card then.
During your initial meeting with a new potential customer, your goal should be one thing - to build rapport.
Remember that the purpose of your business card is to capture that rapport and positive emotion and provide the person you meet with a means of continuing the conversation in the future. Presenting a unique and luxurious business card at that moment will help to cement the idea in your prospects mind that you really are everything they want you to be. Seeing that you have care put into your brand will make your prospect feel that their initial positive thoughts about you are warranted; this will help build trust.
People make purchasing decisions based on emotion, and people will eventually buy your product/service for one reason: To Feel Better.
That might mean that your product solves a pain they have that they do not want to live another day with, or that your product helps them to enjoy themselves a little bit more. It will not be of any help to start explaining logic or features behind your product or service, especially when you first meet someone.
Cultural Differences in Exchanging Business Cards
As a final tip, some cultures have slightly different practices in the way they exchange business cards. If you are traveling internationally, it might be wise to research if there are any slight cultural differences in business meetings. For instance, in some regions such as Hong Kong and Japan one should always present his/her business card to someone with both hands, holding the top two corners under his/her thumbs. The receiver should then accept it with both hands as well from the bottom two corners, and should bow slightly to show respect. Sometimes it is also respectful and appropriate to examine and appreciate the business card you have just been given before carrying on the conversation.
Keep things ideas in mind and you will always come across as professional, personable and with intentions that are genuine.
If you have any questions about how to make sure your next business card design comes out luxurious and unique to make the impact you desire with your prospects, please contact us and a print specialist will be glad to provide recommendations!
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