Did you know that your business card say everything that anyone needs to know about you?
The design, messaging and feel of the business card are signals that help formulate public perception of you, your brand and/or company. After making a contact, your business card is the only tangible thing they have to remember you by. It is your identity, your chance to be remarkable and memorable for the right reasons.
Yet, the humble business card is often overlooked. Making a great first impression is the first step, but leaving a sloppy business card is like taking a date to a Michelin starred restaurant, then putting them on the night bus home. Let’s face it–an unremarkable card probably won’t result a second meeting!
As a marketer, it’s so important to get the details right. We all collect business cards, and we all throw most of them away. So why do some cards make the cut, while others end up in the bin?
Common Pitfalls of Forgettable Business Cards
Here are some common mistakes that marketers make when choosing a business card:
- Being unremarkable–Communicating your unique selling point (USP) is key. What is it that makes you stand out from the pack? Don’t be dull and average, be unique and get noticed. But remember, getting noticed is not the same as being remarkable. You don’t want to get noticed for all the wrong reasons.
- Sloppy design–If your business card looks amateurish, so will your business success. An overly complex design can send the wrong signals as well. Take your time with the design and remember that when it is printed in small sizes, a complex design will lose detail. Factors like the right color and font also play a big part in depicting personality, so make sure you choose carefully.
- Unclear messaging–Design and text should not be competing for attention on your business card, so make sure your message is clear and easy to read. How many times have you received a business card at an event, then looked at it later and had no idea what that business actually does? Too little information is a silly mistake, but so is too much; balance is vital.
- Low print quality–Don’t skimp on high print quality. A professional business should look professional. Low print quality can be disastrous for the look and ‘feel’ of the card. Don’t let a high quality product or service be let down by using a low quality printing job just to save money. In the end, it won’t be worth it.
- Poor quality paper–The quality of the paper used for your business card says something about you, whether you like it or not–so don’t use cheap, thin paper. Today even recycled paper can provide weighty, thick, high quality paper for your cards that produce excellent print quality, so there is simply no excuse for poor quality.
- Oversized cards–Be a little careful with oversized business cards. Large or bulky cards don’t always fit well into people’s pockets, card holders or wallets. While outside of the box large cards can be fun, but the last thing you want is for someone to have to fold it up five times to fit into their pocket or end up throwing it away out of irritation.
- Hiding contact information–Why it is you give out your business card? It is so that you can keep in touch and be contacted! It seems obvious, but make sure your contact details are clear and direct–don’t hide behind a generic reception number or an email address. If you don’t want to be contacted directly, be selective about who gets a card!
So, before designing and printing your business cards, stop and think. What do you want your business cards to say about you, and how will it make you remarkable and memorable? Planning and considering will make the most out of your business card. And finally, don’t forget to take them out with you wherever you go!