Are your business cards letting you down?

Business cards? Who needs them in a digital world? Well anytime you meet someone face to face for the first time, your business cards could be the difference between being remembered and being consigned to the mental trash bin. You only get one chance to make a first impression.  Your business cards can determine if all the effort that went into creating that impression is wasted.

 

Picture the scene:

  • You meet an interesting contact – the ideal prospect for your business.
  • You explain the benefits your clients get from working with you.
  • They seem genuinely interested and ask for your card.
  • You pass them your business card, the flimsy freebie card from WhatsItPrint  (it even has “Produced by WhatsItPrint – call 0800 xxxx xxxx to get your free cards” printed on the back).
  • You go away feeling great about meeting a hot prospect.
  • But you never hear from them again.
  • They ignore your e-mails and never take your calls.
  • Disaster!

Sound familiar? Even if you’ve avoided the temptation to try the freebies, do your business cards really help you to stand out from the crowd?

You see, most businesses don’t go the extra mile. They don’t take the trouble to be different. They have the same old ‘me too’ attitude. They cut corners to save money – hence the freebie business cards. A few pounds saved in the wrong place can mean thousands of pounds lost where it matters most – the revenue line.

 

How to be different

The first rule is don’t copy the rest. Somewhere in your desk or a box file you’ll have the collection of business cards you’ve been given over the last few weeks, months or even years.

Have a sift through them. There will be different colours. Slightly different sizes. But despite teh diffeences, they’re all pretty much the same really.

Most will be packed with details – name, address, phone number, website, e-mail address, fax number, twitter handle etc. So much it might be hard to read because they had to use such a small font.

So do any stand out? Do any have a compelling offer? How many tell you what the card giver does for their clients?

I have many different business cards. Some are for different businesses but some are for different aspects of the same business. Here’s some examples:

 

This is my “standard” project management business card:

Standard PM business card

It has my picture on the front to remind my contact of our conversation. It has one of my lead magnet offers on the back. In fact I have two different “standard” cards, each with a different lead magnet offer. A clear call to action so I can capture their contact details when they sign up for the offer even if I lose or don’t get their business card. And if they pass on my card, the next person will see the call to action as well.

This is my project management business card to get prospects to think carefully about their project management training needs:

6 part PM business card

It gives me the equivalent of six standard 1-sided business cards to get my message across. It includes my picture, clear benefits, an offer of a free video series and a testimonial. It’s different. It stands out.

People remember me because of my business cards. They see me looking back at them from the card. They see the offers of free help and in the case of the 3 part card, an independent testimonial recommending what I do. How do your business cards stack up?

 

More ideas and examples

Need more ideas and examples? The two examples from my project management business show just a few of the ways you can stand out and make a great impression with your business cards. As part of the achieve365 library there’s an implementation plan that goes into detail about the do’s and don’ts of business cards. It also has some more great examples to give you even more ideas to help you stand out.

achieve365 Library

The achieve365 Library comprises over 50 implementation plans, each one covering a different aspect of building and growing your business. From hiring and firing to all the key aspects of social media. From copywriting to knowing your numbers, no corner of the business is left untouched. To find out more, book a call with me and find out how your business can stand out from the crowd. Click the image below to book that call now!

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5 Reasons why your website sucks

If your website doesn’t grab the reader’s attention it sucks. Period. And you only have 3 seconds to do it.

Attention spans for the average web user are dropping all the time. With so much ‘noise’ out there if you don’t pique the readers interest fast, they’ll move on.

The rule of 3’s

You may have heard me talk about the rule of 3’s before:

  • You have 3 seconds to grab people’s attention with your headline.
  • Then you have around 30 seconds to get their interest. Do it well and…
  • You get three minutes to convince them – at most!

So does your website pass the test?

Here are my top 5 reasons why your website sucks:

Lemon 1 It’s all about you and not about your clients. I’ve lost count of the number of sites I have seen that “we” all over the internet. We do this, we do that, aren’t we great. That’s not the way to win your client’s trust and build a rapport with them. Go back to marketing basics and apply them to your website – now!

Lemon 2The end user experience is cr@p. This could mean a number of different things from broken links, disjointed headers as you scroll, slow loading pages right through to inability to read it on anything other than a widescreen desktop. Over 50% of web traffic is now viewed on a mobile or tablet. Make that 90% for Facebook ads. So if it isn’t responsive your website sucks.

Lemon 3It’s irrelevant. Traffic doesn’t just find your website – it gets there because it was sent there. Either you sent the reader there to check you out or you put out some form of marketing that sent the reader to the site. But if the page you sent them to isn’t directly relevant to why you sent them there, your website sucks. This is such a fundamental principle that Google even built it into their algorithm for calculating where your pay per click ads will feature. That’s how important it is.

Lemon 4Your readers don’t know what they should do. What do you want your website visitor to do? Are they to sign up for something? Should they book a call? Should they download something. Without clear direction they WILL do something – and it will probably be to click away from your site.

It’s Lemon 5stale – like yesterday’s French bread.  People like to do business with dynamic, responsive organisations. If your website hasn’t changed in the last six months that hardly denotes dynamism. If your last blog post was 12 weeks ago and your Twitter feed shows tweets from a few weeks back, they are going to wonder if they will get a similar level of attention as your client. I’m not saying you should be making daily changes, but regular content refreshes are essential.

That leads nicely into how I can help……

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You may have heard me talk about the achieve 365 library. It’s a growing and constantly refreshed repository of the best business advice available to entrepreneurs. That advice has been gleaned from a team that has built 8 separate £1m businesses over the last ten years. And it’s practical advice, not airy-fairy theoretical waffle. The advice is distilled into a series of Implementation Plans, each one covering a particular aspect or creating, building or running your business.telephone

And yes – there is an Implementation Plan covering your website. It’s a checklist covering 14 different aspects of how to turn your website into the ultimate conversion machine. Don’t let your website be a lemon. Book a free 30 minute call with me and find out how Achieve 365 can help you. Just click on the link here or on the phone and book your call.