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Business card networking Featured

9:33am EDT July 22, 2002

There are more ways than ever to get your name to clients and vendors.

But the same click of a mouse that sends messages across the Internet in the blink of an eye can just as quickly banish them to cyber oblivion. The same can be said for voice mail.

But the good, old-fashioned business card provides all the relevant information a person needs to know about your company. And it can do so much more.

Bob Popyk, author of "Here's My Card: How to Network Using Your Business Card to Actually Create More Business," offers tips and stories for business owners looking for ways to get more out of those thin paper rectangles. He has advice on everything from colors and type faces to when you might want to use odd materials or staples.

And, he explains when not to use business cards and even how to keep track of those you have distributed.

Here are a few of his suggestions:

Bounce-back business

Have your business cards made in a foldover style, double-sided with a perforation. The tear-off section could contain a discount, a freebie for coming in, a certificate or a rebate.

Money talks

Coins glued with rubber cement to a business card get attention. They get noticed and they don't get thrown away.

Keep on clipping

To your targets' attention, send -- or bring -- something of interest to them from a newspaper or magazine. Attach your business card to the article with the back side out. This is where you write your personal note. Use a paper clip so they can easily remove your card. All your pertinent information is on the front. They will turn it over, even if it's just out of curiosity.

What's that name again?

When a name is hard to pronounce or read, phonetically spelling it out (in parentheses) could be a face-saver for your customer. Your ethnic name might be easy for you, but for the person who gets your card, it could be a bit of a problem. How to reach: "Here's My Card" is available at bookstores nationwide or through many online book outlets. For more information, contact Bentley-Hall Inc., (800) 724-9700 or at www.bentley-hall.com.

Daniel Jacobs (djacobs@sbnnet.com)is senior editor of SBN.