I've gotten into the habit of taking plenty of business cards with me when I go out. They printed me 500 when I first started and more than a year into my job and I'm only halfway through them. Of course, then it was decided that I had to have additional business cards made with the logo of our other subset association. It was too cost-efficient, I guess, to make a business card design with BOTH logos on it.
Now that makes 500 more that I have to pawn off on unsuspecting people. About 750 business cards that I make sure to take wherever I go. Not to network, make introductions or even use as scratchpaper for other people's phone numbers. I take my cards so that I can leave them in the varied fishbowls of drawings that nearly every place has for its business lunch customers. It's been my sole ambition to win as many free lunches for me (and some times up to 10 of my friends) as humanly possible.
Sure, there really is no such thing as a free lunch. To get the fruits of my card droppings, I usually have to pick something up or listen to a short selling spiel. My favorite prize includes the gift certificate giveaway. They usually add your email to the mailing list, but it's easy to unsubscribe. However, in my 18 months of droppings I've gotten free lunches on three occasions for a total of 10 people.
That's an estimated value of about $100. Not too bad a return on investment considering my company only paid about $60 total for my business cards. The company gets something out of it too. First of all, I usually take a bunch of my co-workers with me, so they get back some happy employees. Secondly, I've freed up a bit (albeit small amount) of extra money that makes me not curse the bit (albeit small) amount of money they pay me.
Overall, it's a win-win situation and if you've got some extra business cards, I highly suggest taking a few to drop them in the fishbowl. A belly-full of free food and one less business card to get rid of.
On a side note, because of Schultz's damn mention of The Barry Gibbs Talk Show, Chef and I have been singing that damn theme song all day. Chef is convinced that it was the lingering catchiness of the theme song that convinced Lorne Michaels to put it on the air. So, if anyone knows where we can find an online clip or downloaded a clip of it, let me know.
Talkin' bout crazy gold medallions.