Networking events are crucial to the success of your business: you meet great people, make useful acquaintances, and have the opportunity to pass business with other professionals.
Let’s be honest, though: once you leave, you totally forget about all of those business cards you received. They get tossed into your briefcase or handbag and fall into a seemingly bottomless hole, only to be found months later.
At that point, it’s too late to reach out, and all you can do is mourn the lost connections.
But it doesn’t have to be that way!!
These days, there are dozens of fun and useful ways you can store those cards so they don’t get lost. Here are a few of my favorite tips:
Determine What To Keep
Before you invest in any sort of storage solution, first think about what you really want to keep.
My favorite piece of advice? Don’t even bother taking cards from the people you’re not interested in reaching out to.
Most of my clients have stacks of business cards that they have never contacted – WHY did they take the card in the first place? Be intentional!
Ask yourself these questions:
Why would I want to contact this person (get to know them, need their service, indicated they might be interested in working with you, etc.)?
What’s the next Action I need to take (call them, schedule a coffee date, set-up a sales call)?
Then, write on the business card a note about where you received it and immediately follow-up (within three days).
How To Get Organized
There are countless ways to organize business cards nowadays, from electronic solutions to the ‘bucket method.’ These are the ones I’ve found to be most effective:
CRM: If you use a CRM as part of your business, check to see if it includes an app that allows you to scan and upload business cards from your phone. Most software will now allow you to capture and store any business card with just a quick snap of your device’s camera. Once it’s updated, you can edit the contact’s information directly in your CRM.
Business card binder: Some companies make three-ring binders designed specifically for holding business cards. This is a solution I often recommend to my own clients – it’s easy to grab and take with you to events and you can just add cards as you receive them.
Rolodex: Before you laugh, remember: Rolodex has been around for many years for a reason. It’s a super easy solution – just staple the business card to a Rolodex card and place it in alphabetical order. Bonus: some Rolodexes even have slits cut just for placing a business card.
Index cardholder: This is the perfect solution for someone who wants to keep all of the business cards they receive but doesn’t necessarily want to put them in any type of order. Putting them in an index cardholder keeps them all in one place so they’re easily found if they’re needed at a later time. Tip: Purchase index card dividers to sort and organizer business cards by category (where you met them, industry, etc).
What should you NOT do with business cards? Stack them on your desk.
This is just some of the value you can get when partnering with GetReorganized.com™. If you’d like more tips, advice or suggestions on how to be more productive and organized, book a 15-minute productivity assessment.
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