Your Business card - A powerful Visual identity branding tool
Plastic Business Cards
First impressions are sublimal, powerful and lasting. What if you can drive home the advantage at the very start and create a huge plus in your favour by handing a sleek well designed business card?
Treat each opportunity that you get to hand out a business card as a moment of free high impact publicity to a targeted person who matters hugely. What is the cost of losing out and how can you ensure that this chance does not go a begging.
Even in today’s digital age most networking experts and business professionals agree about the importance of business cards. While most people only keep a card until they can bookmark a person’s website or input a number into their phone a business card holds important cultural significance in the business world. Now, I could launch into a multiple paragraph post with all the reasons why a business card is important but it doesn’t really matter why they are important, they are expected, so you had better have one.
I think it is far more interesting to discuss what makes a good business card, than why you need to have one at all.
Often, a business card is a person’s first encounter with your visual identity (I say visual identity and not brand because I believe their first encounter with your brand is when they meet you). When designing your business card you have to ask yourself three questions:
Does it clearly convey all-important information?
Does it represent who I am ?
How quickly will someone throw my card away?
The first two questions are pretty obvious. After all, it is of the utmost importance that your card fulfills its primary function as a purveyor of information. It must state who you are, what you do and how people can get in touch. Additionally, the fact that it must be cohesive with your brand should come as no surprise. It is the third question that not enough people ask themselves when designing their cards. It may seem counter-intuitive but I feel this question is especially important today when people can easily store your information digitally. Today more than ever business cards are extremely ephemeral so for yours to have any staying power it must be pretty great. If you can create a card that will make someone want to hold onto it even after they have bookmarked your blog, the chances are much greater that they will remember you. Not only that, but if your card is really great it is likely they will show your card to other people which in turn spreads your name.
I believe a good card must spark an emotional response. That response can be wonder, surprise, humor, beauty, etc. It sounds simple, but to get a person to connect emotionally with a 8.5 cm X 5.4 cm (approximately) piece of card is tricky, but if you can do it you are golden.