You might be thinking to yourself that business cards are for people who work at big corporations or run their own businesses. That might have been the case decades ago. In a world that relies heavily on technology during an economic recession, it’s more important than ever for EVERYONE to have a business card. Whether your a student, a crafter or someone who works for the pharmaceutical industry, it is always a good idea to carry your own business card so that you can easily network with people.
Why? Consider this:
- You’re a student who is finishing up your senior year and figuring out post-grad plans. Ideally, you’d like to secure a job afterwards. Whether you’re attending career fairs or even going through the interview process for jobs, having a business card handy might give you kudo points. You don’t have to go all out to make a pretty card, but employers especially would like to know what your expertise is when you talk to them. Think of business cards as a quick snap shot of who you are.
Here’s what my very first patch of cards looked like when I was a uni student:
Not the best, but it gets the point across. People can tell I’m a creative person with my expertise in marketing and studio art. It gives my basic contact info if they’d like talk to me. Sure, you’ll be handing out resumes, but giving them your business card with your resume will leave a good impression on them. Fact: most employers don’t expect students to have business cards at all. Having a business card means you’re a person who wants to network with others. What’s the solution? You can always go to VistaPrint.com for a pack of free 250 business cards. They have many templates to choose from, or you can customize your own. A few clicks of the mouse and BAM! You’ve got business cards so you can tell people why you’re a good candidate for a company or organization.
- Say you met someone at a conference, or even on the train. You get into a conversation about something that interests you both, but eventually, you need to leave. Grabbing a scrap piece of paper and scrawling your contact info makes you look lame and very disorganized. And honestly, that person is probably going to chuck your info out anyway if they shoved said scrap paper into their bag. This is when creative and good business cards will come in handy. You will definitely want cards that are unique and be something that people can’t forget.
For starters, these aren’t too bad for something nice and simple:
Color is definitely one factor that will catch people ideas but using a nice font for your contact info make you look professional. Clean sans serif fonts are ones you want to go with. If you want to be even more creative though, take a look at 22 most creative business cards. It takes some time and thought into making a good business card, so don’t rush. You’ll want to make sure your card is one that you’ll be sticking with for a while, especially if you’re paying a decent amount of money.
These are pretty cool (and hopefully they get you to use some imagination when thinking of a way to represent you):
- Are you just starting up a business? Whether you sell products or offer services, you will definitely want business cards for people to snag when they come in and out of you place. Business cards are a great tool for your customers to refer friends to your business, or perhaps remember who you are and come back to make another purchase. They might have questions about what you have to offer, when your opening hours are, etc. Great for folks who go to trade shows or craft fairs, and definitely important if you have a physical space. Doctor offices and hair salons have business cards, which sometimes serve as appointment cards. Why shouldn’t you?
Here are some interesting ideas (especially if you want to make it more industry-based):
Remember, you don’t have to be a graphic designer to make cards. There are plenty of vendors that offer easy customization or templates for you to use. Or if you know a creative friends, have them help you out.
- Do you have an Etsy shop or sell things online? While you might not have a physical space that customers can shop in, you do have the internet. You also have social media, email and other tools to leverage the traffic going to your shop. Most importantly, when you send out packages to your customers, including your business card will help them remember who you are. Remember that the internet offers A LOT and some people like to give in to impulse purchases. They might buy from you and you’ll never hear from them again if you only them the item they ordered. If you “dress” the transaction up a little with custom packaging and a business card, your customers will be able to tell that you’ve put time and effort in running your shop.
I absolutely LOVE Moo.com’s minicards for my business cards. They’re smaller than your average business card and you can personalize them. Since I’m an artist, I’ve displayed some of my work on one side and I have my contact info on the other. If you’re not really up for making a design from scratch, Moo has a bunch of different ready-made templates you can use too!
Here’s what I give out to people now:
(Excusing that these are the ones from my purse, it’s highly recommended to get a holder for these when you do attend events). Pretty simple but still pleasing to the eye. And, these minicards are small enough to pack in a bag in case you are travelling. The nice thing is that most people are looking for business cards, so when you present a minicard to someone, they actually pause and take a look at what you’re giving them. And, Moo’s cardstock is wicked thick. It’s not going to easily bend or rip unless you use your hands or a pair of scissors.
Here are some of my favorite Moo cards (mini and business):
You can always go with a local printer, or other online print vendors though. Overall, you want something that has a nice visual so people will remember your brand, in case they do want to buy from you again.
Hope this helped! I think it’s definitely important to define a. who YOU are, b. what you want people to know about you and c. what you want to offer people (and why that’s important). That should be enough to get you thinking about what your business card should look like. So, what are you waiting for? Brand yourself! There are no excuses!