Here's the one I got on June 24th, 2005:
"Get the best business card money can buy. It's your image - and it makes an impact every time you give one." - Jeffrey Gitomer, Author, The Little Red Book of Selling.
Gitomer is unerringly accurate. I attend a lot of events, conferences and trade shows and as the paper card stock gets shuffled from person to person you can really tell who takes care of their brand - both personal and corporate - by their business card.
I always hear the argument: "It's just a card. People grab one, input the info into their contact manager and throw it away, so who cares?" Maybe they do toss it. Maybe they don't. But that initial experience - the first time they touch the paper stock, look at your info, look into your eyes and decide if you are someone they would like to do business with is the most decisive moment. If it were not, I don't think Malcolm Gladwell and his latest book, Blink, would be the hotrod it is on the non-fiction best-sellers list.
What Gladwell knows - and what I consistently preach - is that the minute you hand over your card, all of the receivers' senses create what will be the foundation for how they perceive your brand. I speak often of "touchpoints." As someone who co-runs a marketing and communications studio, I would still say that my business card is the most frequently used touchpoint of our brand and the most important.
I have seen gruff CEOs caress and massage the card as they are listening to what we do, and I have seen the same people place my card at the top of their business card pile or even raise an eyebrow as if to say, without words, "nice card." That's not ego talking. That's a concerted effort to make every interaction someone has, with Twist Image or myself, resonate.
And yes, it all starts with a smile and a great business card. It's just that simple.