You know that, as a job seeker, you need to have an up-to-date resume and portfolio. But what about business cards?
Many people think that business cards are meant for individuals who have a job already. But they are also useful in networking situations when you’re unemployed. It’s much easier to hand someone a professional-looking business card than trying to remember someone’s name or write down your email address on a scrap of paper.
Business cards are not just for those people who already have jobs. Since you need to be an expert at marketing yourself during your job search, you should have business cards as a part of your toolkit.
Your business card should contain the following elements:
- Full name: How do you prefer to be addressed? Put your first and last name prominently on your card.
- Email address: Make sure it’s professional and spelled correctly. The majority of people will contact you via email, as it’s easier to get in contact that way.
- Phone number: Where can someone get a hold of you at all times? Preferably, list a cell phone number that is unlikely to change on your business card.
- Online portfolio/personal website/blog: Where can this person learn more about you? If they are a potential employer, they’ll want to see previous work samples and writing skills. If you can, buy your domain name to have a website address that is easy to remember.
- A professional tagline: Much like an elevator speech, give people something to remember you by. This can include your field, skills, expertise, etc. For example, “Marketing Guru,” or “Web Design Expert.”
- Optional – a photo of yourself: Some people choose to put a picture on their business cards to help others remember their face with their name. Depending on your personal preferences, it’s an option to keep in mind.
- Optional – a logo or graphic: Make your business cards visually interesting by creating a nice logo out of your initials. Or head into your local design shop and ask them to create a graphic that you could use across your marketing documents, such as your resume, online portfolio and business cards.
Business cards can come in handy in a variety of job search situations – from networking events, to conferences, to interviews – and help you land your ideal job more quickly. How have business cards helped your career and/or job search?