Keep it simple. Designing the perfect business card.
Your business card is an integral part of your company – it’s a representation of who you are and what you’re about, all packed within a few square inches. People receive and hand-out business cards on a daily basis for one main reason – they produce leads and generate business, so here are a few tips to make yours stand out from the pack.
Remember the Five W’s – The primary purpose of a business card is to get key information about your business across. That being said, make sure your most important bits of information located prominently. This can include your name, company name, job title, address, contact info, or website – try to display only the most vital information a client would need to learn more about your company and to reach out to you.
Make it Clear – The more information you cram onto your business card, the more you’ll be tempted to shrink down the size of your text. This may sound good in theory, but in reality small text is downright illegible for many people. Use a clean, clearly readable font – and don’t go below 8pt, which generally considered the smallest recommended font size.
Use QR Codes – These unique matrix barcodes are free, easy to use and allow you to fit a lot of information into a very small space much more efficiently than with text alone. Any user with a smartphone can simply take a snap-shot of the code and be sent to directly your website seconds later.
Colors, when to use them and when to avoid them – If you’re in a creative field, using a vibrant, colorful business card can catch the eye’s attention and make you stand out. This could be especially useful if your company has a recognizable, preexisting color scheme – designing a card that in line with your companies existing color-scheme will create a sense of association and recognition in the mind of consumers. On the other hand, a simple black and white card can look elegant and professional – creating an powerful impression. Know which color approach best reflects your profession and target audience and design accordingly.
Try embossing – This is a special effect that indents the letters of your card for a three-dimensional look that adds heft and style. It also has the added benefit of giving a tangible “feel” to your card that regular flat cards lack. This may help your card with its ability to stand out at the customer and in turn create more of an impact on them.
Use pictures – A picture can say a thousand words. Even a simple image on your business card can spark a connection far more powerful than words alone. Try featuring only text on one side of your card but save the other side for an image – even something as simple as your company logo or a picture of your product – can create an indelible visual link in the clients mind.
Don’t use borders – This is for the simple reason that errors can occur in the printing process and a misaligned or lopsided border can make your card look like a slop-show. Most printers recommend leaving an area the same color as the background around the edges of your card – approximately 3 mm in order to avoid this problem.
Remember the safe area – Keep all your text contained as closely to the centre of your card as possible to avoid cut-off. Printers have been known to cut off pertinent information when cutting the actual cards.
Thickness DOES MATTER – The thickness of your card stock can affect the way your card, and as a consequence, your business, is perceived. A thick card stock feels hefty and makes your company seem more sophisticated, while a thinner stock (less than 300 gsm) makes your card seem cheap and tacky.
Keep It Simple Stupid – The good old KISS principle can do wonders. – While some have been known to print cards on unusual materials such as wood or metal, the novelty of this plan is outweighed by the impracticalities. A card made of unusual material might be hard to write on, fold, or carry around – which may lead to it ending up in the trash-bin. Paper card stock is the standard for a simple reason – it’s practical and works. That being said, don’t go crazy trying to print your company info on a slab of granite, people appreciate simplicity.