Many people believe that the humble business card has had its day, but we say that there’s never been a better time to get on-board. With every company so concerned about their social media presence, it’s easy to lose track of face-to-face meetings and spontaneous interactions with new potential business partners or customers. Handing out a business card is easy and effective, as one tiny item can contain your name, job title, website link, email, address, phone number, and any other vital information. They can be as normal or as wacky as you need them to be, but all business cards need to look good, be sturdy, and more than anything, memorable.
These are the top ten tips for everything regarding business cards.
10 Always have at least one on you at all times
Carrying a bunch of business cards in your backpack or handbag is a good idea, but what’s also good is putting one or two into your purse or wallet, as those are things that we generally have with us at all times. You simply never know when the opportunity might arise to give someone more information about you or your company. This is especially important for freelance workers, who need to work a bit harder at getting exposure.
9 Get them printed professionally
You might think that you’d like to save a bit of cash and just make a DIY effort on the cards, but this will likely be a bad idea. Professional printing services will have access to more paper types and finishes, as well as simply having superior inks and the means to print off hundreds of business cards seamlessly. Here would be a good start if you’re new to ordering business stationery.
8 Try not to make it bigger than a credit card
It can be tempting to be a bit rogue with your business card design in order to stand out, but this just makes it more complicated. Anyone you give the card to will instinctively place it in their own purse or wallet, but if this is not possible, it might get lost.
7 Make it legible
You might think that a “normal” design is boring and won’t get you noticed, but this is far from the truth. Anyone interested in your services won’t be disappointed with you after being handed a plain business card that clearly displays your contact information. However, they <em>will</em> be confused if you hand them a card with loopy fonts, colors everywhere, and information that almost needs to be decrypted, rather than simply read.
6 Leave some blank space
This is a rule that many designers love, as the human eye ideally needs surrounding blank space (often called white space or negative space) to properly comprehend the information on cards, posters, and many more printed items. By filling up every available space with something, you’re doing yourself damage.
5 Turn it into something useful
While many brands think that turning a business card into a household item is a bit of a gimmick, it can actually work well because whoever is using it will look at your name countless times. Examples of this are business cards which double up as bottle openers, plants, phone holders, toothpicks, and even cheese graters! These types of designs are a bit trickier and expensive to pull off but could be worth the effort if you love the idea of being different.
4 Match the card to your other items
For continuity and brand image, it’s good to keep having the same font and logo used throughout your other advertising materials. People need to start recognizing the company’s image so they can recollect it again and again, so it’s unwise to start messing around with different logos.
3 Ensure the information is correct before going to print
Imagine finalizing the design and hitting ‘enter’ on order for 500 business cards, only to find out you’ve spelled your own company name wrong or entered an old email address after receiving the items! Ask a few people to proofread your business card design before it gets printed to save yourself any drama.
2 Add a QR code
Not all smartphone users like QR codes, but for those who do, the option to go straight to the company’s website or social media page via a QR code is a welcome one. You could even incentivize the QR code by adding a discount (for online shops) only accessible through the page linked to the code.
1 Hand it out proudly!
Leave a bunch at your local coffee shop or bar, hand them out to strangers you think might like your services, and make sure any first-time meeting you have with someone ends with you giving out a business card (if they haven’t already got one).