Two important lessons about having business cards at trade shows/conventions. The first one is obvious: always have them on hand. Always have some, even when attending a social activity when that activity precludes handing them out, such as skydiving. If you leave them behind, you will encounter someone that could be a good contact just as you achieve terminal velocity.
All joking aside, what will happen is you will miss an opportunity to trade cards before or after the activity. In what my friend called a total noob move, I left my cards back at the room when heading to minus5, an ice bar down at Mandalay Bay. We’re going to be bundled up in parkas and wearing gloves, thought I. No way that will be conductive for handing out business cards. Ah, but no. Because there is that time before you don the parkas and gloves that you are talking and someone offers you their card. And the time after you come out of the ice bar and are socializing over drinks and they are interested in what you can do for them. Or when you are heading out and chatting on the way to the taxi stand and they want to keep in touch.
The other thing I learned is if you are keeping your business cards in your messenger bag, it’s better to have them in a zippered compartment instead of one secured by snaps unless you enjoy spending about two minutes picking them up after you upend the bag.
Hitting the show floor this afternoon (with clean business cards). Coming up later this week, a GTS wrapup.