Impressive Business Cards | Is Your Business Card Socially Active? How To Design Business Cards for the 21st Century

Impressive Business Cards | Is Your Business Card Socially A...

Impressive Business Cards | Nostalgia flash: Remember fax machines? Scanners, PDFs and e-mails have pretty much done them in. How about all those flyers you kept in your closet? Most have been replaced by websites. Social media platforms and digital technology may have eliminated some of the physical elements of entrepreneurship, but for many the business card is still an irreplaceable marketing tool.

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Let’s face it, meeting people in person is still the most effective way of marketing. Don’t get caught scribbling your contact information on a napkin! A business card is often the first thing that people see about your business, so it’s vital to keep them up-to-date and looking great. It’s only a small piece of cardboard, but it can say a lot about your company, you, and the overall personality of your brand. So, what makes a business card effective?

Effective business cards point the way | Impressive Business Cards

Keep in mind that your business card’s primary function is to help potential and current clients reach you. The information you provide on the card is key to how effective it will be. Your business card should have the standard details – company name, card holders name, role, email, phone number and address.

You should also consider including important online details – such as your web address, Twitter handle, or the link to your Facebook page. Including your Twitter handle, along with any other relevant social websites, can be an effective way to strengthen and follow-up on chance meetings. This also serves more than one audience; while some more traditional clients may prefer email, others may prefer to connect over LinkedIn.

Impressive Business Cards | Is Your Business Card Socially A...

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Branding is everything | Impressive Business Cards

Make sure your business card leaves the right impression. An unusual business card might be memorable, but it could do more damage if it doesn’t match your brand. Create a business card that conveys your brand – the color, fonts, texture and shape can all play a role. Every element of your business card should complement the image you want your company to project. A consistent brand message is the one that really resonates, so take the time to discover just the right font, color scheme and material for your business card.

Transparency, a new idea | Impressive Business Cards

While most business cards are printed on paper, there are a growing number of specialty cards that are printed on other materials. Plastic and wood seem to be the most popular, but there are also examples of metal business cards. The material your card is made of can help it stand out in a pile of other cards.

The vast majority of business cards out there are printed on paper card stock. To truly stand out, consider designing a transparent business card. See-through business cards are usually made of plastic, which is why they are more durable than business cards printed on paper. They also have a high retention value that the standard paper-business card does not have.

Adding QR codes | Impressive Business Cards

QR codes are a modern tool which allow you to snap a picture of a code on a business card with a smartphone. The code can redirect your potential client to your website, online portfolio, LinkedIn profile, or resume. It’s a great way to bridge the gap between a business card and your online work. If you do decide to add a QR code to your business card, consider including a call to action so that people will clearly understand what will happen when they do scan your card. For example, above the code you could add, “Add me to your contacts.”

RELATED: Personalized Business Cards | Why Fast, Cheap, and Easy Business Card Design Is Killing Your Brand

Impressive Business Cards | Is Your Business Card Socially A...

Keep it simple | Impressive Business Cards

Catching the attention can be important, but that shouldn’t necessarily override the importance of simplicity. You want to send a clear, and concise message to the potential client. Prior generations packed as much information as possible in their cards, filling every square inch with logos, colors and text. However, the most successful modern business cards lean toward clean, open designs, with just enough text to get the point across.

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A word of caution | Impressive Business Cards

While you may want to get creative with your card, some critics warn that it’s a good idea to stick with the original dimensions, or your business card may not fit into potential clients’ wallets or other business card holders. And, if they don’t fit, they’ll probably end up thrown in the trash. However, you can still differentiate yourself with creative shapes that fit within that size, particularly if you’re a creative company or a small business that’s looking to stand out.

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