It’s easy to assume that business cards are completely obsolete, especially with the new digital age we all find ourselves in. There are arguments as to whether this treasured medium is still necessary. Depending on who you talk to the answer is either a resounding “yes” or a jeering “no”. However, if you’re not using business cards in your marketing collateral, we are here to tell you: you are making a huge mistake.

Think about it. What is the point of a business card? Its main purpose is to convey contact details, yes. But there is much more that you need to take into consideration. If you think that business cards have no function other than to give someone your cell phone number, ask yourself: why aren’t all business cards plain with simply some text on them?

We can tell you why – a business card is the very first impression a prospective customer will get of you, your company and your brand. This one piece of physical contact they make with your business can make or break a potential business relationship with your brand. When you think about it that way, doesn’t it only make sense to put as much effort and attention to detail into it as possible?

Here’s everything you need to consider when you’re designing your business cards.

1. Logo and Tagline

As we mentioned, it’s easy to assume that the most important aspect of a business card is the contact information. We’re not disagreeing with you. However, if your business card has all of the necessary information on it but doesn’t have a clear brand message, it will not make it passed the trash can. Your logo and tagline will give your potential customers an idea of what your business is all about before they have even visited your website. [Related: 4 ways to save money on graphic design]

2. Name and job title

Business meeting handshakeYour business cards should be an introduction. It sounds obvious, but you’d be surprised at how many people actually get this detail wrong. If your full name is Viktor Michael Jonathan the Second, go with the name that you prefer to be called. Your job title should be treated in a similar way. Resist the urge to put your entire list of achievements on the card, and focus on the title that describes what you actively do in the company the most.

3.Contact information

Girl busy on her phone The contact information is the meat of the business card and should be accurate. Remember, your business cards are an introduction to you. When you’ve given your business card to someone by hand (preferably while making eye contact), that person has already formed a connection with you. The last thing you need is for them to have to call a generic office number that leads them through a series of beeps and tones before they can speak personally to you again. Make sure the information on the card is personalised and working smoothly.

4. Your website address

In today’s technologically driven age, this is a given. However, simply sending your potential client to your website home page may not be enough. Why not create a page specifically for welcoming the people who were impressed enough by your business card to actually use the link on it? A welcoming page, perhaps with a special offer to encourage them to use your product or service, is the ideal way of getting them from being a prospective customer to an actual buying customer. Don’t forget about QR codes. If you are unhappy with the basic idea of simply printing out your website url in writing, remember that QR codes provide the perfect way of making this aspect stand out more on the card.

5. Social media profiles

Phone with social media iconsEveryone and their grandmother is on social media these days. Social media channels have become indispensable parts of both traditional and virtual businesses. If you’re not on social media, you practically don’t exist to your clients. Sharing your social media platforms with clients builds trust and shows a sense of transparency with how you operate. However, don’t list every single page you own – be strategic about which accounts you are sharing, and make sure they will provide your clients with a good idea of how your business works.

6. White space

We felt that this was so important, it needed its own point on the list. Business cards need white space. Don’t clutter them with too much information. Remember the point of the business card is to introduce, not tell them your whole life’s story. For that we’ve got brochures, flyers, booklets and pamphlets. Clutter doesn’t invite anyone and will instead overwhelm your client. Be strategic about what you include and don’t include on the card, and remember that there is more than one side to the business card that is available for printing.

7. Good design

This is the be-all and end-all of your business cards. Even if you follow each of the above steps perfectly, if they were not designed professionally, they will likely still end up at the bottom of someone’s musty handbag or in the trash. For more tips on how to keep your business cards looking professional and classy, check out our blog on design do’s and major design don’ts.

Remember, even the most beautiful and perfect business cards can be ruined if they are printed badly. At Printulu we guarantee you top-quality business cards with free delivery to your home, anywhere in South Africa.

Conclusion – Your own personal billboard that creates a lasting impression

Yes, you have various devices and other means of connecting with people. However, there is an advantage to having your business cards handy with you. It’s a quick and easy way to connect with someone you meet whether at a networking event, conference, dinner/lunch party, airport lounge, etc. While sharing your contact details they can also convey the personality and appeal of your brand, consider this when choosing your design, formats and finishes.

[Related: Tools for Entrepreneurs: How to start in a world of Amazon and Co.]

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