A business card is a singularly powerful tool for self-advertisement. If lets you market yourself to a very wide audience without the hassle and prohibitive cost of newspaper advertising.
When you have business cards printed in bulk, however, be sure to get yourself a business card case. It's crass to distribute your business card without putting them in a business card case first.
How to Distribute Your Business Card
Is there a right way to distribute a business card? Is there a wrong way of doing the same? The answer to both questions is yes. In distributing business cards, there is a right way and a wrong way. There is no right way of doing it the wrong way.
The Wrong Way: Distributing your business card as if you are dealing playing cards.
The Right Way: Never pass out business cards like you would pass around sheets of paper or playing cards. Keep them in a business card case. Additionally, present them in such a way that the recipient can read them right side up.
As the recipient takes a card from your business card case, make an effort to keep up polite chatter. If, on the other hand, you are the recipient of the card, comment as you take the card out of the business card case. Then, subtly, put it in your pocket.
When networking, remember to keep your business card case inside a pocket you can easily reach. It is not seemly to have to rummage for your cards while exchanging banters with high-ranking executives.
Keeping Up Appearances
Your business card is your advertisement. It should, thus, be representative of the image you are trying to get across. So, make sure they are never creased, wrinkled, dirty, or scribbled upon. To help your cards remain spotless and crisp, keep them inside a business card case.
Tips for Cross-Cultural Card-Giving
1. When traveling abroad, have your information printed in English on one side and in the language of the country you're visiting on the other.
2. When giving out business cards in Asia, remember to use two hands to give and receive cards. Be sure to put the card that you receive on the tabletop, at least until the meeting ends. After the meeting, put the business cards you received inside a portfolio or a business card case.
3. If you ask someone for a business card, offer yours in return. The same rule applies for times when it is you who does the asking.
The act of exchanging business cards is as important as a handshake. After all, when you exchange business cards with someone, you trade not just contact information. You exchange the possibility of a future with each other in it. Do it with style.