I'm having fun today. I'm entering the contact information I got off of all the business cards I collected at the NAR convention. (Now, if YOU gave me a card, don't worry, I promise not to call you during dinner or otherwise pester you without your permission!)
Are you asking yourself why on earth I'd claim that data-entry is fun? Well, yeah, I agree, THAT part isn't as much fun as, say, taking a nap. But what I'm enjoying is checking out the hundreds of styles, designs and content of these business cards from all over the country. Some are fantastic, some are... not so. Of course, we all have our opinions on what makes a business card "good" but since this is my blog, I'll tell you what I think. Feel free to chime in with your differing opinions!
Okay, first, I must mention that what has jumped out at me is how many agents use their company's email ISP as their email address, for example JoannePeterson@APCRealty.com. This is crazy (unless Ms. Peterson owns APCRealty). Never, ever use your company's phone or email systems when providing contact information to friends, strangers, clients, prospects or even other real estate agents! If you leave the company (and chances are you will), you're throwing away future business and referral dollars by the fistful. I still get calls and emails from people who have my Re/Max business card (which is at least five years old). I GET the calls because my contact information didn't change when I left Re/Max.
Second, I must say that the award for the most BORING business card design is shared by Coldwell Banker and Prudential. You all know what I'm talking about. I must have dozens of CB and Pru cards and they all look exactly alike. Unless the person you gave the card to really, really likes you, there's no way they're going to find a special place for that card.
In my opinion, you should strive to create a business card that, if it were found lying in the bananas at the Piggly Wiggly, someone would pick it up and consider keeping it because it's so attractive, appealing, funny or otherwise eye-catching. Some will argue that by saying that we should strive for a professional (boring) business card because that's what doctors, lawyers and accountants do... but... NEWSFLASH! We aren't doctors or lawyers or accountants, much as we long to be. We're in a much more people-oriented business and yeah, we have to stand out!
Third, many of the cards have stuff on the back - tip charts, additional contact information, referral hearts & "Oh, by the ways..." even a few mission statements. Eh... it's up to you, but I think the real estate on the back of my business card is way too valuable to fill up with this stuff. THIS is perfect space to write on when you want to provide information to someone else - such as - your "personal" cell phone number, the name and number of your favorite painter or dog-sitter, an interesting website address, whatever! In the hundreds of business cards I collected, I've yet to see something printed on the back of one that was worth the loss of that valuable space.
And last, many of the cards include what seems like dozens of contact phone numbers and/or website addresses. C'mon, are these folks really so hard to find that they need 14 different phone numbers? Do they really WANT someone calling all those numbers (and leaving 14 messages) trying to track them down?
Of the hundreds of cards I went through, here are my three favorites. No real reason; they're just the ones that caught my eye. What do you think?
Yes, our very own Joeann! Isn't she CUTE?