Learn how “business cards” for your blog or podcast can help you promote and grow your audience.
1. Have a reason for your blog/podcast cards
Don't design and print cards just for the sake of having cards. Know why you want them and how you plan to use them. This will direct your design decisions as well.
Here are my reasons for making podcast cards
- To remind people to check out your blog or podcast. Giving someone a card is much more effective then hoping they remember my website.
- For targeted “marketing.” See where your conversation goes before you decide which card(s) to give someone. Then they receive the card most relevant to them.
- To share connection information. Your card can tell viewers how to get your content as well as contact you about your content. This is crucial if you give your card to a potential sponsor.
- To add professionalism to your reputation. Podcasts have already been called “amateur hour” by Steve Jobs, and podcasting may still seem amateur to some people. Having a well-designed card gives you an extra bump in credibility.
- To encourage community promotion. Don't be the only one handing out your cards, send them to your fans so they can be your remote marketing team.
2. Include the right information
Don't cram too much information on your cards, but also don't make them so simple that they're worthless. Consider including the following information.
- Blog/podcast name
- Short description
- Website address (have a nice domain)
- Contact/feedback information
- Host name(s)
- Network affiliation
- Host face(s) (see below)
3. Leave white space for notes
Watch who writes things on business cards and they're people who actually listen and are impressed in at least some way. (Side tip, write on other people's cards!) Leave space on your cards so you can write helpful information, relevant episode/post, or so your new friend can write something about you.
4. Put your face on the cards
I'll be honest. This seems tacky to me. But I'm changing my opinion after BlogWorld and New Media Expo in New York (2012). The cards with someone's face made the people far more memorable, especially when there was a personal conversation.
Have you ever noticed how much easier it is to remember someone's face than their name? A card with both your name and face bridges this gap.
There's also a psychological issue that people are less likely to throw away someone's face. Makes sense!
5. Don't spam with your cards
Treat your cards like money and don't just throw it out to everyone. Wait to see if someone's conversation with you “earns” your card(s). Even consider waiting until the other person asks for a card or the last moments of your conversation before you give one.
6. Get your cards professionally printed
Business cards need to be strong and attractive. Although VistaPrint is a popular company (and I'll admit that they have a great affiliate program), I recommend against using them.
Instead, check out GotPrint.com [not an affiliate link]. 1,000 business cards with glossy color front and black & white matte back (writable) costs about $16 plus shipping for your own design. VistaPrint starts at about $53 for the same service!
7. Consider a “conference card”
I went to BlogWorld and New Media Expo with 1,000 copies of each of my four cards (The Audacity to Podcast, the Ramen Noodle, ONCE podcast, and my freelance design business card). This means I had 4,000 cards with me in New York!
But I knew that I would only give one or two (out of four) cards to those for whom the cards would be relevant. This means I brought twice as many cards as I needed (let alone my over-estimation for how many people I would meet).
For my next conference, I'll probably design a single, concise “conference card” that will list everything I do. This way, I'll only carry one card instead of the four I took to New York.
Watch my personal blog for when I display my design for these.
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This post may contain links to products or services with which I have an affiliate relationship and may receive compensation from your actions through such links. However, I don't let that corrupt my perspective and I don't recommend only affiliates.