As you already know I will be attending / speaking at the 2013 Hispanicize Conference to be held in Miami Florida April 9th-14th. Attending as many conference over the years as I have, I pride myself in being pretty well prepared for networking and connecting with friends, both old and new.
I will preface this post by saying when I first attended Hispanicize in 2012, I thought to myself… there is no way I am sticking to the schedule. I swore that I would eventually do what so many of us do and find a way out to see what fun cultural things Miami had to offer… I was pleasantly surprised that Manny Ruiz and his team made sure that brought all of the elements I would have sought outside to the venue. In some cases, the Hispanicize field trips like the Andy Garcia movie screening, The Chevy sponsored trip to eat croquetas at Calle 8 and the Scarface mansion party were EPIC to say the least… but I digress.
This is the first of a few tips I will be sharing to make sure you get the most out of this conference under the assumption you have already registered, made travel arrangements and booked your hotel (Eden Roc is almost booked so do not wait any longer) – Visit the official Hispanicize event for more info – http://www.hispanicizeevent.com/
With that out of the way…
Let’s talk about the importance of business cards.
The reason I went to Hispanicize is to network, to build relationships and explore partnerships to execute on my business plan. One of the most effective tools for branding and creating that first impression is your business card. A well designed card that matches the identity you have created for yourself online will be what many people remember you by, so make sure you are ready. I cannot tell you how many times I have heard “I just ran out of cards” at a networking event.
ARE YOU KIDDING???
Not having enough cards is the equivalent of handing me a stick to hit your birthday pinata and there is no candy inside. It shows that you do not take networking seriously, that you are disorganized or that you are lying to me…because you are saving the last 5 cards for who you believe to be the most important people at the event. Please do not be that person, you eventually will get caught and it will make you lose all credibility with people who are really interested in collaboration.
If you do not have a card, chances are unless I put in some extra effort, we will not be able to make the most out of our encounter… which sucks because I have some really great ideas. You also run the risk of missing an opportunity with a brand who has a whole stack of cards of other bloggers / influencers they will be considering (no card = no opportunity).
So here is your call to action and keep in mind you need to do this yesterday.
- If you do not have a business card… get one ASAP, email me if you need me to recommend a designer.
- Have a card already designed? Make sure you order enough for the trip to Miami. Last year, I ordered 1,000 cards for the trip and between the people I met in the conference, all the events and all the business card raffles…I only had about 450 when I returned.
For the last 12 years, I have used an amazing company called 4Over4, that provides great service, prices and turnaround times. (no… they do not pay me to say nice things about them, at least not yet) I just think they are a great brand with a great portfolio of services to offer.
If you want to connect with me before Hispanicize… here is my card…
click on it if you want to know a little more about me.
Gracias… see you in Miami.George Torres The Urban Jibaro Cultivando Cultura since 1997… Social Media | Branding | Event Management Follow me on Twitter… @UrbanJibaro