Getting a company on of its feet is often the most difficult job an entrepreneur will face. Having a great idea is most likely the problem, and finding a space to work out of can be relatively easy too, but getting a solid customer base is an entirely different situation.
The ability to get people to turn away from well established services, and come to what you have to offer is often the most difficult hurdle that any new business must overcome. Quality business cards and stationary is a surprisingly effective way to help launch your company into prominence. Networking and advertising are keys to reaching a wide audience quickly, but to do so effectively, one must be careful not to break out of professionalism.
It is relatively inexpensive to post flyers, put up signs and even advertise in some avenues of media. However, appearing professional and qualified to individuals is extremely important, and business cards and stationary can show that extra bit of professionalism.
Business cards are often on the front line of advertising. Chances are that your friends and family have a few, and you may have some of these materials spread throughout town, but getting some word of mouth reputation will require some serious networking, and a great way to facilitate this is by using business cards. Business cards are often an individual’s first impression of your company, and the more professional and impressive your business cards, the more professional and impressive your company will appear.
Make sure you follow all rules of etiquette when it comes to handing out business cards. Do not force them on people, only give when they are asked for or the conversation dictates a good time to hand one out. Never try and give one to a person who is higher up on the totem pole unless he or she asks.
It is not a good idea to mix business endeavors with your personal life. This can give the impression of shameless self promotion. The key in all of these things is to maintain a sense of professionalism. Never look like you do not know what you are doing. Even if you are new to the scene, you know you have something to offer these customers that nobody else can. The key is to give them an impression of professionalism so that they will be willing to come and see what you have to offer. Never give out damaged cards, and avoid handing out multiple cards to one person. It gives them the impression that you expect them to help network you. These things can push people away, not draw them in.
Once your business card etiquette is well practiced, having a well made card becomes essential. Make sure that your design is crisp, clear and easy to read. Present the essential information, without any sort of excess. Any unnecessary data can clutter the empty space, and make it harder to read.
As with many things in life, keep things relatively simple. The card needs to be attractive, but all too often, overly complicated cards will appear like homemade work, not professional work. Avoid the temptation to be gaudy to grab attention. Instead, keep things basic, leave extra space to help the eye focus on the information being presented, and then add splashes of color here and there.
A logo is a great way to get some attention for your business card. It will simultaneously provide color, draw the eye and give your potential customer an image to identify your company with. A small picture can be effective as it helps the recipient remember who you are. Adding color to important parts of the text, while the rest is in black and white is another good way to make your card stand out. The important thing is to draw attention without being distracting.
Business stationary is another great way to make a professional impression. Sure, a well written letter is great, but if that letter is on stationary designed with your company in mind, it can make you look that much more advanced. Having personalized stationary is a bit of a luxury, and giving customers the impression that you can, as a company, afford a bit of luxury is always a good thing. If you appear to be struggling, or among the pack, it is easy to assume that your services are on the same level. However, if you give the appearance that you are above the competition, chances are, and potential customers will think that your services are above the competition.
Successfully using business cards and stationary to launch your company is a great tactic for a young company. Having customers think that you are just another start up is not exactly a recipe for success. Potential customers and prospects can associate a “start-up” with a certain degree of unreliability. Give the impression of permanence, and professional looking business cards and stationery is a great way to do that. Looking like a seasoned professional is easy with well made business cards and stationary.