Does your business card accurately portray your business image?
The purpose of printing business cards is to provide clients with a clear, easy to read summary of your contact details, but it's also an opportunity for you to define your brand.
Your business card, along with your logo, can be a great reference point for your branding identity. Get your business card design right, and the colours, fonts and layout styles can be easily applied to other materials, such as your brochures and business stationery.
Whether accurate or not, the quality of your business card printing is also an indicator of the quality of your products or services. A thin, flimsy card with poor print quality will be a turn-off to prospective clients. Yes, a cheap business card will make YOU look cheap, giving the impression that your products or services are of poor quality.
At the bottom end of the quality scale is the home-made business card. Printed onto A4 sheets on your inkjet and separated by tearing along the perforations, these cards tell people you have insufficient time and/or money to invest into your own business, so why would they become a client?
In many cases there's little difference in cost to upgrade to higher quality business card printing, and the investment will more than pay for itself when you hand over your card with pride.
Now to the trim size and finishing options. Classic business card sizes are 90x55mm and 89x54mm, and these are the perfect size in most cases. They fit into wallets, purses and business card holders, allow enough space to clearly display your logo and contact details, and the back can be used for extra information or a special offer with a 'call-to-action'. But if a key aspect of your business image is being "different" or "outside the box", perhaps a custom size - or even shape - business card will suit you better. You can stand out from the crowd with a custom dyecut, or simply trim to an irregular size.
Choosing a finish for your business card is often just a matter of your own taste, but remember it's your clients - and prospective clients - that you're trying to impress.
Matt celloglaze is becoming far more popular than gloss with my clients, simply for the "premium quality" image it gives to their card. Matt cards have a soft sheen and smooth, silky feel.
They're often described as "classy" and "very professional". Is this is the type of thing you'd like people to say about you and your business? Then a matt card is for you.
Gloss celloglaze is normally only applied to the front of a business card, and gives an extra shiny finish. Your graphic designer should be able to suggest the best finish for your card based on the colours and design elements used, and of course your branding objectives.
Both finishes seal the inked surface, while making your cards a little heavier and more durable, helping them stay in new condition for longer. Choose high quality 420gsm card stock and the right finish, and your card will be a great representation of your business image.
Now that your business card is complete, the same design elements and print quality standards can be applied consistently to other areas. Complement your matt business card with a matt DL size postcard, use the colour scheme from your business card as the basis of your brochure design, or have your graphic designer utilise design elements from your card in your letterhead design.
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