Why you should create your own personal business cards.
If you’re a freelancer just starting out your business or a small business owner trying to become appealing to more prospects, deciding on how your brand will look like is extremely important. Your branding consists of several elements namely, your logo, your website’s layout and your product itself!
As we’ve previously discussed, when you are building your business identity, your offline presence matters equally as your online one. In order to be successful in attracting new clients, keep in mind that first appearances really do matter in the business world!
Your frontline direct marketing must be innovative and interesting but expressing the essence of your business, as well. Most of our interactions with leads and partners nowadays are done digitally - by sending out newsletters, carrying out meetings via Skype and networking via Linkedin.
However, there is one thing that the digital era cannot replace and that is physical interpersonal interactions. Simply put, making genuine human connections is one of the most necessary aspects when trying to build lasting relationships with customers.
The business card remains still the most effective direct marketing tool compared to email campaigns, SEO strategies and paid ads online. This is especially true when attending networking events, such as conferences, industry summits or even while waiting on an airport lounge! As a small business owner, you can pitch your products or services wherever you might be and, along with a firm handshake, you may exchange business cards with your next big client.
Your business card leaves the first impression of your brand to the receiver, so it must convey the right message. Furthermore, an originally designed business card will make your brand instantly recognisable among others! In this digital era we are all interacting in, you can make your own visiting card and in a very good price.
In this article, we are going to give you some tips on how to design and order unique personal business cards online with the help of simple-to-use applications.
What to include on a business card
Logo & Tagline
Business cards not only contain contact information but are an extension of your brand as well. So, before even designing them you should pay extra attention to your logo and tagline details. The selection of colours, shapes and wording must reflect your business identity in a tasteful manner.
Anyone holding your business card should be able to identify your company instantly wherever they may see it, eg your website, featured in ads, in any kind of medium for that matter.
Name & Title
This seems to be the easiest part of creating a business card, but you’d be surprised at how many people actually get it wrong. For example, if your name is Francis but everyone knows you as Frank, put the latter on the card.
Your business card is not supposed to provide information about your actual ID but rather introduce you to people who are interested in what you do. Formalities such as this are redundant and may lead to unnecessary confusions and re-introductions.
And then there is the matter of your job description. Your business card should tell anyone that might receive it what you actually do, not your title within a firm. A company can have a lot of co-founders for example but each has an expertise.
This is important because your job will inevitably attract prospects more easily, especially if the name of your company doesn’t directly imply what you do. If you own a marketing company called “Matthews & Co.” and you’re an SEO expert your business card detail should look like this:
Matthews & Co.
George Matthews, SEO expert & CEO
See? Now you’re both helpful and fancy!
The business card is above anything personal and so must be the contact information on it. Your personal business email, your personal line in the office and your professional cell phone number, if you have one.
If someone at a networking event liked you and your ideas, you want them to call you right away, so don’t include the number of your company’s call center on the business card. You can give them your direct line or your professional mobile number to reach you without having to wait on hold or use a digital menu.
Having said that, don’t go to the other end and become too personal. Your Gmail account or your home’s number is off limits and completely unprofessional!
Don’t forget to include your website and your company’s social media profiles so anyone who is interested in connecting with you online, can do so easily. You want to send the people you met personally to a link where they can find out more, register to your services, or be given a special offer.
A key point here is to keep the URLs on your business card short and indicative. For example, mybizdomain.com/special-offer will surely get more clicks than mybizdomain.com/landing-page-features-5istVNkdgDOse7f2ONza4aDDc.
One of the latest trends is putting some sort of Call-To-Action (CTA) on the card such as a QR code, that when scanned, will lead prospects to a nice video of your work or your website.
Moreover, your physical location is only necessary if you own a shop or an office where your customers should visit in order to do business with you. If, on the other hand, you’re a copywriter who works anywhere there’s an internet connection, your address is irrelevant.
A design relevant to the services you offer
And speaking about relativity, let’s cut to the chase; your business card’s actual design and layout. Apart from your logo, the rest of the card should align with your brand and be associated with what you do.
Your business card design should be simple, yet modern and expressive. If you are a freelance musician consider putting the instrument you play on the card, for example!
Α classic mistake that often occurs is putting too many different fonts on your business cards, which results in an illegible card, to say the least. Keep it neat and classy or go with the default font in case you’re using a business card maker template.
Don't overdo it with the card
Overstuffed with information business cards are an absolutely “no-go”. The whole point is to invite potential customers and partners to contact you personally, not overwhelm them with clutter.
It is OK to leave a blank space on your business card to let the important information “breathe”.
This applies to the colours you choose as well; there’s no need to include more than 3 different colours. No one like flashy business cards for the sake of flashy cards (unless you’re an artist extraordinaire or something!).
Where to get your business cards made: 5 useful online Apps
You can either design and print business cards online on your own or hire a professional graphic designer to do it for you.
If you find yourself wondering how to print your own business cards, we have you covered! Here are some of the best online applications that can help you design full-colour business cards from scratch without having to be an expert:
- Oubly.com is the online endeavor of an experienced designing and printing company. They offer you dozens of templates for your business cards, and with their experience they can create unique cards that express your field of expertise. You can order your cards online and receive them in a wonderful package!
- Business Card Maker is a free online software that provides a wide array of beautiful templates. Once you choose the template, you get to edit the business card information and its layout. When you’re done, you can download your card in PDF or JPEG file format. If you’re looking for easy professional business card design, this is it!
- Free Business Card Maker is a user-friendly application that enables you to design a professional business card in only 4 easy steps!
- MOO is an e-shop where you can choose depending on the material of your business card (they even have cotton business cards!), the layout and the size. You can also upload your own design and let them take care of the rest using their cool online app. They offer useful tips to make your business card better and some samples to get inspiration.
- OvernightPrints will help you customize affordable business cards online simply by letting their application guide you through the process.
- LucidPress, at last, is a SaaS that has elegant business card templates. You can create custom personal business cards online for free and send your order!
The business card is a strong asset in your direct marketing toolbox!
Regardless of choosing to design and printing them yourself or outsourcing the task remember to keep them simple, inviting and tasteful.
The goal it to come across as a professional who means serious business while giving all the necessary information to those who wish to contact you.