Ah, business cards. I love ’em. If you ever gave me your business card I probably still have it. Business cards, even in this age of online connectivity and social networking, are still relevant.
With a few clicks, people may forget your twitter ID, Pinterest name or web address. A business card is tangible. It won’t disappear and by engaging the sense of touch as well as sight, it makes a different sort of impression. A personal one.
A little while ago I wrote about the importance of paper stock when printing your business cards. Of course we know stock is not all it takes to make a classy card that speaks to your professionalism. I recently came across this article on the FreelancersUnion website and this sentence immediately jumped out at me:
[pullquote]In many ways, the design of your business cards (and the quality of the paper they’re printed on) are better subtle indicators of professionalism and your personal brand than any text you put on them.[/pullquote]
You want to be memorable and have the most important information jump out. That requires good, clean design and editing.
The article at FreelancersUnion has a lot of excellent points and I encourage you to check it out. Using both sides of a card is always a good use of business card real estate. Leaning on the side of simple is good advice. I would add/differ a tiny bit on a couple of points, however.
First, not everyone has a job title. Many of us are our businesses, especially if we are creative sole proprietors and prefer to have our name and the name of our business. That’s ok. Instead, a short tagline describing the business will work instead.
My second point of mild dissent is on the topic of social media accounts. I am of two minds. On the one hand, it is good to demonstrate you are active on these platforms; on the other I feel several additional addresses can make for a cluttered card.
A good compromise is to add small icons. My thinking is that ultimately, we want people to go to our websites, and the whole point of social media is to drive people there, right? Our social media links will be there if they choose to follow. So small icons (I like to customize them to harmonize with the design direction) on a business card can say “I’m involved in social media,” while leaving the primary address be the website. Just another approach to consider.
Another good point in the article is to pay attention to typefaces. Again, when unsure, keep it simple. Print out your card to see a sample of the type size and clarity; seeing type on your monitor, which magnifies content, can be misleading.
Make your card memorable and you will be, too.