You need to know whether you should be printing a couple hundred or a couple of thousand business cards.
Designing a business card is an exercise in imagination. Actually printing a business card, however, is an exercise in economics.
You should have a card that will, all other things being equal, convince a potential contact to actually pick up the phone and contact you. But all other things aren't necessarily equal, and no matter how well-designed and memorable your card is, there's no one hundred percent guarantee that the person you hand it to will contact you about your business. When you think about distributing business cards, it's vital to think in terms of probabilities and aggregates, rather than on handing out fifty business cards and getting fifty new clients overnight.
A good rule of thumb as far as online advertising goes is this: for every two thousand people who visit your website, one will give you money (whether through donations, buying a product from you, or even through referring a friend who they know needs what you have to offer. ) This rule varies depending on supply and demand, of course: a website selling hand-woven blankets will make fewer sales from ten thousand visitors than will a website selling efficient, cost-effective graphics software for all user levels. But when considering the rate of return on your advertising budget, it's best to assume the worst, and two thousand hits for every sale is not what anyone who starts a commercial website really wants to consider.
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