This post stems from a conversation that started in one of the Facebook groups I’m in and I completely dropped the ball on responding to a question and can’t retrieve the post to answer it, so I’m posting it HERE! The initial question was… How many bloggers have business cards & do you find it beneficial and necessary? Also, what are some great affordable printing companies that you recommend? My short response was… Definitely get business cards, I have been fortunate in my four years of blogging to have always gotten FREE networking materials. She followed up with: HOW? So here’s my reply: I’ve NEVER paid for business cards, post cards or flyers! I’ll share how I’ve been able to continuously get blogger networking materials at no cost to me but, first let me answer the initial question.
Depending upon why someone is blogging and the direction they are taking their blog in will determine whether or not they feel business cards are necessary. I absolutely think blogger networking materials are a MUST! They come in handy at blog conferences, networking events, and tweet-ups! You have the opportunity to meet new bloggers, connect with your virtual blog friends in person, brand sponsors, and speakers at conferences. Many bloggers have local blog groups in their communities that have grown and continue to thrive because they are networking, meeting new bloggers, and inviting them to join their group(s). I’m in a great blogging group in my community and I don’t know everyone personally that’s in the group. We don’t always attend the same events and timing is always a factor for everyone so when I do get a chance to meet them, they’ll definitely get my blog business card.
Meeting someone for the first time can be the start to a great relationship. You want that person to remember you so make that GREAT first impression and you always want to give them your contact information. When they think of you whether for business purposes or just to keep the lines of communication open you’ll be easily accessible. Some bloggers have mobile apps that scan in your business card and you don’t even have to hand it out until you really need to. I’ve had someone scan my card and give it right back to me, which enables me to ALWAYS have business cards on hand except for that one time… It was circa Blogalicious 2010 when I forgot my business cards at home. That was the year that I collected everyone else’s business cards and send them tweets or texts of my card. I even followed up with an email after the conference. I had a copy of my business card in my email and saved it to my phone since I designed it. Perks of being a graphic designer, that somewhat saved the day!
So, with all that being said… How can you get FREE blogger marketing materials?
Well for starters, you can create an about.me page and link all of your social networks and blog. My page is about.me/JenLawrence. Once you do that you can claim a FREE pack of business cards from MOO!
Secondly, If you are on Klout Pay attention to your perks! You can get a FREE pack of MOO business cards for being a new user or if you are an existing user but haven’t claimed that perk already!
Third, join PeerIndex they have great perks too and Mini business cards from MOO was one of them! I LOVE my Mini MOO cards. I’ve gotten nothing but, compliments on them. When I run out, I’m definitely ordering some more! (This will be my FIRST official purchase)
Fourth, there are printing companies that work with bloggers and will reward you free products in exchange for being a brand ambassador, reviewer and hosting a giveaway! I’ve hosted giveaways for Print Runner and Uprinting in the past.
Fifth, don’t be afraid to pitch a company that you like and ask what they require from their brand ambassadors and how to become one. Be open to reviewing their products and/or hosting a giveaway if you are a fan!
Sixth, when you see your fellow bloggers hosting a review and/or giveaway for a print company… ENTER IT! I just won a $25 dollar gift card to buildasign.com. Guess where my next set of business cards are coming from?
SEVEN: When you register for blog conferences, pay attention to the sponsors and perks that come along with being a registered attendee. For Blogalicious 2012, I scored a FREE box of MOO cards for being a registered attendee and a second box of MOO cards on top of that one from a fellow blogger that shared a free promo code! Sweetness!
So there you have it! Nothing too hard, it all comes down to PAYING ATTENTION (I noticed I said that a few times) and taking initiative to approach a brand you’d like to work with! Let me know if I’ve been helpful and feel free to add to the list in the comments! Ciao!
One Last Thing: Let me also mention that I’m a social butterfly so business cards and post cards make the most sense for me but, you can choose to use business cards, magnets, decals, stickers or post cards. You have options when hosting a giveaway or reviewing product, same thing goes for when you enter giveaways and contests!