I know, there are a whole lot of agents who are so caught up in today’s technology that they believe business cards are about as relevant as buggy whips. They say that they don’t use them – choosing instead to trade contact information with their smart phones.
If that pleases them, fine. I won’t argue, but I do think they’re missing opportunities.
Will the waitress who served your dinner, and for whom you left a generous tip, pull out her phone and take down your contact information? How about that favorite grocery store checker? Would the store manager appreciate it if she (or he) held up the line for such a purpose?
These are people whose contact information you won’t have unless (or until) they call on you for assistance or send one of their friends or relatives to you. You might not even know their full names. But that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t let them know just how to reach you when you’re needed.
With the exception of other agents, I believe you should be handing a card to everyone you interact with during the day - even if you've given them one before. If they ask why, tell them it's so they'll have one handy when they want to give your name to someone. That, by the way, is a subtle request for referrals and just might make people realize that you do appreciate it when they tell others about you. (When they do refer someone to you, remember to say Thank You!)
Photographs: While it has become common practice in real estate now, there are still those agents who believe it is “unprofessional” to include a photo on their business cards. They say doctors and lawyers don’t use photos.
I think that’s silly. Real estate agents aren’t doctors and lawyers, and they don’t gather clients in the same manner that doctors and lawyers do.
You’re out and about, meeting people and gathering clients wherever you go. You need name and face recognition, and face recognition is easier for most of us than name recognition.
Many of the people you talk with in your day to day travels either don't know your name until you hand them your card, or won't remember your name later. But if your picture is there, they'll remember your face. More importantly, when they see you smiling at them, they'll remember that they liked you!
The picture on your card is also important when you attend networking events...
Think about how many people you might meet in a single day, and how little time you have to actually get acquainted with any of them. How can you keep track of which of them impressed you as someone you might want to do business with?
When you hear 50 or 100 names you have to have a darned good memory to remember what you thought about each of those people when you met them. But seeing their faces on a card will cause you to recall how you felt about them. You might see one face and think "She was sure friendly and informative," while another face will cause you to think "Boy was he an arrogant jerk!"
So hand out your card with your smiling face - so other people can think "That's someone I want to do business with" every time they come across the card.