I went to a speed networking meeting on March 8th with Portland bloggers, I had the chance to meet awesome and inspiring bloggers and I received a lot of business cards. Of course such as any professional, when you receive something related to your field, your brain can only do one thing… Analyze it!
I selected five of my favorite cards (it was hard to select only five…and I didn’t even meet everybody so there may have been more amazing ones), and I will give my point of view about each card to help you create your own business card. My critique will concern only positive points that I found interesting so I can show you the great points to implement when you make your business card. For privacy purpose I blurred their information that are not shared on their blog.
Public Relations is defined by everything that can advertise your business besides paid advertising, and business cards are an important part of it. It is the first thing people see after meeting you in person. The business card will be an image of yourself and your business, it should reflect your blog/website design, and have all your information. When you go to a conference where people meet hundreds of people and get a lot of business cards, you want to make sure your business card stands out. I can assure you that they will put aside the ones that are not looking nice, missing a logo, a name, or information, and that does not help them remember who you were.
Dress this nest
Some people will say “it’s just black and white” ” It looks sad without any colors”. In fact, her card is very classy because the background is half black and half white. If the background would have been all white I would agree, but I like it to be simple and clear. I only wish there was more on the back of the card, but it is a good way to let people you meet write something that will help them remember you, or add a note about a project that you want to start together so the person doesn’t lose the information. So it is a very good option to have some space available for additional information. Concerning the information she added the basic but most important: branding, name, email, website and phone number, which is perfect.
I love to receive graphic designers business cards. First it gives you an idea of their work, then it shows you that spending a little bit of money on someone designing your business card is not a bad idea, and they always have very creative cards, you wish you had the same one! She did the same concept as the previous card, only basic information on a white background, with different fonts that are very clear and easy to read. Instead of having a busy background with designs. She integrated some design alongside the information. I love the back of the card too, we find the design that defines her brand, all in black and embossed.
Another card from the talented Klarita that she created for Cassie! She has all her information: name, job title, catch phrase, phone number, website and email address. Only the important information to contact her and not too many. I love the design, which is almost the same on both sides, so its not getting the card too busy. She used only two colors too, that kept the card very classy, and is also the same design that you can find on her blog. She used two different types of fonts, very easy to read and she used a curvy one that gives a feminine look to the card only for her catch phrase and her email address. I like the fact that she didn’t have logo on it too. A logo would have been too much for a nutrition consultant, not a graphic designer or a public relations professional who needs to show their creativity.
Kristi does pdx
I love the shape of her card, and she has five different back designs available with pictures of Portland. Kind of similar to a collectable card. (Moo gives you that option) Since her blog is about Portland and what to do there, I think it is a great idea to add pictures of Portland. I met her in Portland, but if she goes to conferences in another city she will give an insight of the city and make people want to discover more about what she has to say. According to her, photography is one of the highlight on her blog so it was relevant to add photographs to her business card. Since her website name is an abbreviation of the city name (Pdx = Portland), it is a great idea to specify the complete name of the city and the state her blog relates to. Her name is on the blog title, she added her website, her email address and the username of her social media. The card is very clear, the font is simple, I like the black background and rounded corners. Missing is a phone number maybe… but as I said previously, as long as there is your name and at least one current contact, it is the most important.
I really like the new mini cards, I will tell more about them on the detailed advice at the end of that post. Here is one I got and loved!
Most of the time the simplest card is the most effective! Remember that most people in front of you may not be bloggers, communication professional, or graphic designers. They like what is pretty, but if there is too much color and design, they may not appreciate it. They want your business card mainly to have your information. On one side she added only her logo and on the other just her basic information: name, blog name (to make sure that people read the name on her logo well, which is a good idea), phone number, email address and website. All that in only two colors and a white background which makes the card clear and easy to read.
Here are a few tips :
Name: A business card allows people to get back in contact with you. It is not only for them to check your website and all your social media pages later. A business card is a way to remember information about someone for the next time you see him/her. Having your name on the card is very important! Omitting your last name is fine your first name is enough, although having your full name looks more professional. Having your full name will help you get more business opportunities and have people remember you.
Branding: You want to get your blog/firm logo on your card, this helps associate your name with your brand, if you have a logo that doesn’t show the full name of your brand, add it anyways, it is important for people to associate your name with your brand. If you don’t have logo, just add the name of your firm/blog. People need to associate your name with your firm.
Catch phrase / presentation: Your business card can be used for more than just your blog but also professionally as you meet people or brands that want to work with you. That is why adding a little descriptive sentence is important. Business cards should not have long sentences on it, but should add your profession or main subject titles of your blog. It will help people to remember what your specialty is and what your blog talks about.
Ways to connect: Don’t forget to add your email address and phone number. They are the most important information on your business card so people can contact you. I am one of the first people to be reluctant on adding my personal cell phone number but you share it with people you want to conduct business with. They should be able to contact you easily and having your personal number makes sure they can get a hold of you. With email you never know where they can go. Concerning email addresses, try also to create several ones (if you buy a domain name you can have a few different email addresses). For example an email with your first name to add on your business card that would be used only for business purposes and another with the word “info” to have people going on your page sending you comments and questions. You may find with time comes the urge to create different email addresses for different functions but at least with two you make sure that if your blog suddenly grows, you won’t mix business related emails in the mix and reader emails or lose business related emails. Do not forget to add your blog address on the business card.
Social media: You don’t have to add social media links on your business card, but you can if you think it will help people get to know you better, but please don’t add too many. People will find all your links on your blog. In my opinion twitter is the number 1 to list, then Facebook, Pinterest (especially if you show your work on it) and Instagram. Big advice is to separate your personal and professional accounts. Your blog, even if you do it for fun right now is a professional tool. We all love to speak freely on social media, but there are some things to keep between you and your friends and family. Potential business relations and readers don’t have to know everything about your personal life, even if you share subjects related to your personal life on your blog, we all have barriers on what we want to tell to total strangers. Also, try to get the same username for every social media pages you own! Having the same name will help people find you easily, knowing that each account is related to the same person, and if you add it to your business card you will have to add it only once.
Shape / size: This one is a very personal point of view because I think people have different expectations, but generally there are some specification that will make people get rid of your card easily. For example, concerning the display, for my business card I wanted a horizontal display and I didn’t like the vertical one… then I realized when I selected the five cards that the ones I loved the most were vertical. I think that minis are great too, I made one for the business I have with my husband. It is easy to lose but also easy to put in a wallet. The only advice I would give you for the size of your business card is to keep to the standard size (Most websites printing business cards are helping customers to get the perfect standard size). When you receive a lot of business cards, you want them all to fit in the same case and the bigger cards are not easy to store… especially in a wallet!
Fonts: Please don’t go crazy on fonts! Your card should be easily readable! You can get a fancy font on your catch phrase which gives some style to your card but keep a regular font for the important information. If people can’t read your card easily they will get rid of it.
Paper quality: This is a very important factor, please don’t print your cards at home on a low quality “thick” paper (except if you didn’t have time to order your cards and it’s a last minute option). The only image you will share is that you don’t care, and your cards will be easily torn and not look good. Now you can get business cards for not much on websites such as Moo, or check your local printing business.
Images : I’m not a big fan of ID picture on business cards even if it’s the best way to remember you and recognize you easily, in my opinion it is the same thing as having your picture on a resume. People do not want to work with you because of how you look, but because of your work.
Presents: Bloggers have the chance that they can get creative, especially when they meet other bloggers. Receiving a business card with a present can be a wonderful gesture. Personalized and made by you presents showcase your talents and often leave a lasting impression.
If you want to check some amazing cards made by graphic designers go on this website : http://www.cardonizer.com/ Warning here, these cards look amazing, but it’s not a good direction for everybody! Do not get too fancy if you’re a lawyer or an accountant, the cards on this website are design related because their profession allows it remember, your card needs to reflect your job function, if you are going too crazy on the design and your job is very strict, not many people will take you seriously