If you’ve ever taken a glance in the fish bowl of business cards each competing for the free latte or sandwich at your local coffee shop or deli, you’ll notice there’s always one or two that seem to stand out among the sea of standard white card stock. So what is it about these cards that make them so effective? Do they have more originality than the rest? Are they easier to read? Are they straightforward? While the answer probably includes a combination of all the above, there are a few basic considerations you can incorporate into your design that will give you an edge and make your business card both noticeable and – more importantly – memorable. These include:
Readability. It should be a matter of common sense, but if people can’t read your business card, it’s not going to serve you too well. So make sure you’re not using a font that’s too small or too fancy. Basic sans serif fonts are the easiest to read and are also some of the most contemporary for most purposes. Under these guidelines, your business card should contain your basic contact information, but it doesn’t necessarily need to include it all. For example, don’t put every possible phone number on the card if just one can suffice.
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Specialty card stock. Is it a gimmick? Sure. But by getting creative with the materials you use to print your business card on – including rubber, plastic or even heavier card stocks with unique shapes or cutouts – you can instantly grab the eye and possibly even give people a reason to keep and pass the card around to co-workers. Remember: originality is in short supply and therefore highly valued.
Designed to be scanned. With just about everything online or in the cloud now, business cards are no exception. So when planning out the design for your business card, you might consider making it scanner-friendly. In short, this allows people to quickly import it into their electronic databases by scanning it with the use of an optical character recognition (OCR) scanner. This plugs your contact info directly into the pre-established fields of a contact database.
Memorable images. One of the strongest branding tools is the use of a powerful logo… even when you’re just selling yourself as an individual. By incorporating a logo that includes text formatted in an artistic font or images that are specific to your niche, you can use the power of a quality logo to instantly link you with your line of business. Plus, with a free logo design available through web-based providers like freelogoservices.com, you can save your logo design in the vector file format, enabling you to print it at any size without distortion and also easily modify it down the road with almost any design software.
Business tagline. One of the key ingredients on many business cards is a tagline that represents the core of your product or service offering. To craft an effective tag, think about the value you offer, the problem you solve, the specific benefits you provide and how you’re positioned against your competitors. As a general rule, it’s always best to avoid using cliché industry terms, but rather speak in plain language, as though describing your business to a friend.
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Dylan Mazeika is an online writer with a background in marketing and small business. He enjoys writing articles and guest posts on the latest business and design trends, and helping small business owners with logo maker tools.
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