By Guest Blogger Mary Tairua

The first time I got business cards I didn’t know what to do with them.  I ordered a package of 200 business cards with my name, title, and website to prepare for a conference. I spent hours working on the perfect design for them until they were flawless in my eyes. They arrived a few days later and I was ready to take on the world.  I had grand plans to meet a ton of people at the conference and hand out my business card to everyone I met. They were well designed and would implant my name with everyone I met… or so I thought.

During that 3 day conference I handed out a total of 5 business cards to people I met. Five.  I remember multiple conversations where I stumbled over handing out my business card or simply forgot as the conversations moved forward with new contacts. My hopes to run out of business cards quickly dwindled when I realized by day two I had only given my business card to one person.

Surprisingly enough when I got home from the conference I realized I had received business cards from 10 times as many people. Despite my complete inability to work a business card into the conversation, I still collected a ton of new contacts at the conference who are still friends and colleagues today.

That first conference was almost a networking failure because I didn’t learn how to seamlessly hand out my card during the conversation. Looking back I wish I had done a bit of research online first so I knew what to do since face to face networking is not my strongest skill. I’ve since learned and practiced this skill so almost everyone I meet these days gets one of my business cards.

I still keep a couple of that original bunch in my wallet as a reminder of the experience. It reminds me to push harder to get my name and my business card out of my wallet and into the hands of the right person!

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Mary Tairua works as an “internet marketing strategist”  and has since learned how to hand out business cards with more effectively.

Mary’s First Business Card

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