Networking? Have a Kick-Ass Business Card
If you are going to take the time to develop a networking strategy, one of the first items you’ll need is a drop-dead gorgeous business card. I mean a card that when you hand it to someone, they say, “Wow, that’s a really nice business card.” If you’re not getting this response, you need a new business card.
First, photographers are not designers. Hire a designer to do your card. If money is tight, maybe you could trade services with a designer. They know what’s current as far as design styles go, understand and are aware of papers, and will help you to create a better looking card that you probably could.
Second, don’t print your cards on the Epson printer in your studio. Have them professionally printed.
And third, select a paper, material, or printing method that stands out from the rest of the crowd. Mine is translucent plastic (that’s it to the right) and the one I discuss below is printed using letterpress.
Destry Jaimes is a photographer in Austin, Texas. When I was presenting my program on sales and networking for ASMP’s Strictly Business series this spring, I saw Destry’s business card and was very impressed. They were black embossed with silver metallic detail. Destry and I talked a bit and he shared with me that his cards have helped to directly increase his business. I asked if he wouldn’t mind emailing me the details. He wrote:
When I first picked up the cards from Sarah at Studio SloMo, I was so excited about how they turned out, that I figured they deserved proper photography to really showcase them.
I regularly look at noplasticsleeves.com as well as their book No Plastic Sleeves: The Complete Portfolio Guide for Photographers and Designers
(Keep in mind, that I’m a location portrait shooter, so shooting product is not my norm.)
I had a mini-photo session with the cards, and nailed my goal, so I immediately sent an email to Danielle Currier of noplasticsleeves.com showing her my new marketing material (and brand), and asking if they were worth featuring on the blog.
In her reply, she said she really liked the cards, and was curious as to why I had chosen a skull to represent myself, but after seeing my work online, she “got it.” She asked if she could use the images I had shot for the feature post, and asked if I could mail her a few cards, which I gladly did.
Sarah (who designed and hand printed the cards), liked the photos I had taken of the cards, which led to her hiring me to shoot a collection of wedding suites (invites, thank you cards, etc.) that will be shown on her website, and featured in an upcoming issue of Martha Stewart Weddings.
These images were not my usual lighting style, as they had to be a bit more bright and airy, but they were a lot of fun to shoot, and everyone is really happy with the results. The angles and lighting was so fun to explore, that I’m considering a venture into more product shot (marketed and branded differently of course).
We just finished detail shots of the suites yesterday, so I’m editing through them today, and rumor has it that I’ll be hired to shoot more of Studio SloMo’s wedding suites in a few months.
- Here are the photographs Destry took of his cards for noplasticsleeves.com.