29 Perfect Business Card Tips That Will Make You Loads of Money

I love networking and meeting new people. I enjoy the pleasant etiquette of exchanging business cards. Unfortunately, I have seen some poorly designed business cards in my travels. I have been handed a boring dull business card from someone claiming to be a professional graphic designer. I have been handed a torn and frayed off-size card by someone claiming to be a marketing consultant. I’ve seen cards with outdated contact information and scribbled corrections.

This article is intended to help business owners create and design a business card they can be proud to present – a card that will pass the trash test. The goal is to be memorable. What I want for you is for prospects to remember who you are days, weeks, and months after the networking event and for you to make loads of money because of your business card!

Please use the tips listed here to design a card that works for you:

1. Don’t use plain white card stock for your business card. There’s nothing more boring than a white card.

2. Don’t use raised printing also called thermograph printing. This is considered passé.

3. UV coating is the shiny coating you see applied to many cards. Make sure you coat only one side of your card as people like to write on cards to remember who you are and where they met you.

4. Make sure there are 3 methods of communication on your card. Prospects have a preferred method and if you don’t include it, you may not hear from them. List your phone number, email address, and mailing address.

5. Use your business card to drive traffic to your website. Advertise on your card “download my free report” at yourwebsite.com

6. Use a nice quality card stock for your card. There’s nothing that screams unprofessional as a thin card.

7. Don’t list your fax number unless your business regularly receives faxes as a normal part of your business workflow. This is extra information that doesn’t need to crowd your card if not appropriate. And you won’t be bothered by fax advertising.

8. Include a Tagline on your card. Tell your target clients what it is you do for them. This will serve to polish your image and create a brand for your company. Put your tagline on the front of the card.

9. Maintain a consistent brand by utilizing your unique design on both your business card and your website.

10. Keep your business card simple. Don’t try to cram too much information on it. You need some white space to even out the design.

11. Use no more than two fonts in your card design. Fewer fonts make it easier on the eyes.

12. Don’t use all caps on your card. All caps are difficult to read.

13. Don’t use odd sized cards. Prospects keep regular sized business cards after networking events. Odd sized cards eventually end up in the trash.

14. Use the back of the card for something useful, like a listing of the benefits your clients receive from utilizing your services.

15. If you really want to be cutting edge, use the new video business cards available today. This technology is said to be the wave of the future and especially useful if you exhibit at tradeshows.

16. Do utilize a photograph of yourself on the front of your card if you are in a relationship building profession. This helps to make you more memorable.

17. Do utilize a four color photo of your creations on the back of your card if you are in the creative professions.

18. Make sure your business card fits who you are. If you’re an artist, include a photo of your work and make sure the card has an artistic feel. If you are in a conservative field, keep the design simple.

19. Make a digital version of your business card and include it in your email signature.

20. Use a professional email address on your cards.

21. Add certifications and titles to your card to add credibility.

22. When handed a card, make sure to study the card and ask questions about the prospect. This makes you a more interesting person.

23. When giving out business cards take them from a case and hand them to your prospect so that the card is facing up. I don’t know how many times I’ve been handed an upside down business card.

24. Include an offer on the back of your business card such as a free consultation or free quote offered in the form of a call to action.

25. Include a card with all correspondence.

26. Use a logo that is visually appealing and tells prospects what it is you do for a living.

27. Use a 4-color business card. They are not expensive and are more memorable.

28. Make sure you list your title near your name.

29. Hand out your business card as much as possible. Keep a supply in your car so that you never run out!

Professionalism Counts

The best advice I can give you is to use a professional to design your card. This is a one-time investment in your company identity. Just think about the additional fees you can command when you are perceived as an expert. How much is your professional presence worth to you? A well-designed business card shows that you are a successful entrepreneur and not a fly-by-night. It also positions your business for success by presenting a clear image of a company that can be trusted.

16 Ways to Make Your Business Cards Unforgettable

Every time you hear someone say “May I have one of your business cards?” you should get excited. I know I do. That’s because I LOVE my cards. I spent thousands of dollars on printing, several hours on designing and went through 10 different layouts until I got them right.

And it was all worth it.

A business card is an entrepreneur’s best friend, his most valuable marketing tool and an essential element to becoming UNFORGETTABLE. Unfortunately, too many people have business cards that simply blend into the multitude of cookie cutter crap. And that’s a shame, because a business card is more powerful than you think.

Of course, it’s impossible to know this unless you actually have a card that’s really, really good. Therefore, this article will examine The Four Corners of Unforgettable Business Cards:

1. Stacking Up

2. Standing Out

3. Creative Enhancement

4. Implementation

CORNER #1: How Does Your Card Stack Up?

Think back to the last trade show, networking event, seminar, convention, social hour or association meeting you attended. How did people react to your business card? Did they compliment its design? Quickly shove it into their pocket? Show it to someone else? Rip it up?

Whatever the response was, your card made some type of impression. But only the most creative, unique and memorable business cards make UNFORGETTABLE impressions. And those types of cards elicit reactions like…

  • “I showed your card to everybody in my office!” says a hot prospect.
  • “Can I have another one? A friend of mine will LOVE this!” exclaims your tablemate.
  • “Oooh! I want one too!” begs the person in looking over your shoulder.
  • “Hey…can you show my friend Paul your business card!” asks a colleague of yours.
  • “You know, I’ve never thrown your card away!” says one of your customers.
  • If you’ve ever heard a compliment along those lines before, congrats! You’re on the right track.

    That reminds me of Gus. He and I sat next to each other at a sales seminar a few years ago. During the program, the facilitator asked the audience members to exchange cards and get to know each other. Gus’s card was amazing: thick, colorful, double sided, bold, shiny and best of all, simple. (That was no surprise – he was in advertising!) But it was one of the best I’d ever seen. So we introduced ourselves, exchanged cards and talked for a few minutes. And that was about it. Nice guy, I thought.

    Now, here’s the cool part: although Gus and I didn’t really keep in touch, I’ve never thrown his card away. I show it to everyone! In fact, I even use it as a prop in some of my networking workshops! His card was just that good.

    Is yours that good? Keep that question in the back of your mind as you read on. Now let’s move into the next section and find out why certain cards stand out more than others.

    CORNER # 2: Standing Out

    Recently I took 66 business cards I’ve collected over the years and spread them out on a table. I closed my eyes for 30 seconds, opened them and took note of which cards stood out the most. And here’s what I noticed:

  • Red: every card that had red on it stood out.
  • Picture: only a few cards had pictures of the cardholder. This not only made them stand out, but helped me connect faces with names and companies.
  • Vertical: several cards were formatted vertically, which caught my eye.
  • Black Background: most cards have a white background, so the black ones REALLY stood out.
  • Image: cards with some sort of colorful image that took up at least one fourth of the total surface area captured my interest.
  • (To view a high quality image of this game of 66 Card Pick Up, go to http://hellomynameisscott.blogspot.com/2005/03/does-your-business-card-stand-out.html)

    This was a valuable exercise in understanding UNFORGETTABLE business cards, and I recommend it to everyone. Try it out! Gather dozens of accumulated cards from your desk and discover which ones stand out. Oh, and don’t forget to put your OWN card in the pile. You’ll be amazed at what you see.

    Or don’t see.

    CORNER #3: Creative and Unique Ways to Enhance Your Card

    Now that you’ve analyzed your own card and have been exposed to a large quantity of other people cards, your mind should be swimming with new, creative ideas. This is the perfect time to brainstorm ways to enhance your card. So, grab a blank sheet of paper. Come up with as many ideas as possible. Let your creativity run wild! And to help you get started, here’s a list of 16 creative ideas to make your business card UNFORGETTABLE:

    1. Size or Shape – Rectangle, schmectangle. I’ve seen squares, circles, ovals and triangles. Each shape made a connection to the brand, and each shape stood out amidst the endless regression of the same old rectangles.

    2. Chocolate Business Cards (yes, these DO exist) – Several companies have online catalogues for personalized chocolate cards. Expensive? Yes. Delicious? Probably. Memorable? You better believe it.

    3. Trading Cards – If your company is team oriented, get trading cards with your “players” pictures and stats. Then encourage your customers and prospects to “collect all 12!”

    4. Cartoons – Get a custom cartoon commissioned for the back of your card. It’s cheap, royalty free and absolutely unique to your business.

    5. Table/Chart – Include a mortgage loan interest table or some staggering statistics on the back. These are helpful reminders for the mathematically challenged and effective methods to position yourself as a resource.

    6. Pop-Ups – Just like kid’s books, some business cards can be printed as folded, pop-up cards. Talk about thinking three-dimensionally!

    7. Credibility – The smartest thing I ever did to my business card was add color images of my two books. Instant credibility. And, I noticed an immediate change in the reactions from the people to whom I gave cards. One lady even said, “Scott, this is the coolest business card I’ve ever seen!” Money well spent.

    8. Rubber Stamps – Buy 10 different customized rubber stamps for the backs of your cards. When someone asks for one just say “Pick a card, any card!”

    9. Die Cutting – My friend Lisa works for the Rock Island Fire Dept. Her business card has a charred hole burnt right through the middle of every card! It looks incredibly real. And most printers offer this feature for a nominal feel. You can also specify various shapes, bite marks or hole sizes.

    10. Recipe – If you work in an industry connected to food, kitchens or homes; include one of your favorite recipes on the back!

    11. Material – Use leather, blinking or brail business cards (yes, these actually exist too!)

    12. Language – If your business requires international travel, consider offering multiple languages, or print the phonetic spelling of a difficult to pronounce name.

    13. Motivation – If you’re the motivational type, include a famous quotation, bible verse or movie line that connects to your brand. And be sure to read it aloud when you give someone your card, it might just make their day!

    14. Stickers – Print one side of your cards on adhesive label paper. This gives the recipient a peel off sticker for reminders, appointments or phone numbers.

    15. Non-Cards – Who says a card has to be a card? After all, the first rule of creativity is “break all the rules!” I’ve seen million dollar bill cards, coin cards, even a banker in Boston who uses business cards that are actually miniature checks he tears off of a pad each time he gives one out! The possibilities are endless.

    16. Double Up – Make your card “double” as something other than a card. For example, mine doubles as a business card AND a nametag. As a result, people stick it on their shirts all the time. Thanks for the free promotion!

    CORNER #4: Implementation

    Once you’ve come up with the layout for your new, creative, UNFORGETTABLE business card, there are only two things left to do: print ’em up and hand ’em out!

    First, as you approach you printer, remember a few rules:

  • It’s OK to Spend Money – when I did my taxes this year I calculated that I reprinted my business cards 11 times and spent over $1,400 on printing costs. I also doubled my income from the previous year. Once again, money well spent.
  • Local is Better – by choosing a local printer you can work closely with the designers; touch, feel and smell your paper and even do a few test runs until you get the card perfect. Some businesspeople choose to use online sources, which is fine. The only problem with that approach is that most cards designed, created and ordered over the Internet look like they were designed, created and ordered over the Internet.
  • OK. Once you have your new cards in hand, keep a few final rules in mind:

  • Reminders – be sure to tell people you’ve got a new card. They’ll be happy to accept it, even if they already have your old one. Highlight some of its newest, most unique attributes. Also, if you printed on both sides of your new card, remember to either tell people about the back of your card; or hand them the card back side up, so they know there’s more to it.
  • Etiquette – don’t “Deal the Deck” by inconsiderately throwing thousands of your cards to everyone in sight. If so, you will not only become a practitioner of Highly Horrible Networking(TM), but you will waste your money. Remember: people throw away business cards from those who failed to establish rapport or make a connection.
  • The Card Creedo: finally, when you’re ready, reach into your pocket and grab one of your business cards. Look at it closely. Then say this affirmation out loud:
  • “This is my business card. There are many others out there, but none of them are like mine – because there’s nobody else like me. My business card is not a formality. It’s not a piece of paper containing my name and contact information. And it’s not another annoying thing to keep in my pocket. My business card is the most important networking tool that I own. It’s a reflection of my personal brand and a bite-sized morsel of the mission of my business. I LOVE my business card. And I can’t wait until somebody asks me for one. Because when they do, I will find a way to give that person value.”

    After you’ve face lifted your business card from unacceptable to unforgettable, I promise you will feel great. Your confidence will skyrocket. And from that moment on, every time someone asks, “May I have one of your business cards?” it will be like music to your ears.

    Business Cards – Essential Marketing Tools For Your Business

    Your business card is one of the most important, cost-effective and versatile marketing tools you have. How come? Because they’re inexpensive, easy to carry with you and easy to get in front of people. Especially for businesses just starting out.

    However, your card needs to make a great impression. A well-designed business card can effectively promote your business, but there’s a good chance that if your card looks unprofessional, it may be thrown in the dustbin or just lie in a drawer, collecting dust. Your business card needs to tell people what you and your business is about, instead of only telling people who you are and where to contact you.

    Planning, designing and having your cards printed.

    For your business card to be the marketing tool it should be, there are a few things you must take into consideration when planning and designing your cards.

    1. Get professional quality business cards printed for you. Sure, you could print them on your laser jet and cut them with scissors. You’ll get what you pay for and worse than that, people will question whether they can trust you with their business if it seems you can’t afford to print full colour business cards.
    2. Pay attention to the finer details on your card. A logo is important, so invest some time and effort in the design of your logo to make it stand out in the crowd.
    3. A thin, flimsy card, pre-made, off the shelf design and small or unreadable text makes a bad impression. Use colour and images for impact and good design principles to make your business card pleasing and easy to read.
    4. Be proactive and keep your information up to date. If any of your contact or other information has changed, you will appear to be disorganized when you have to scratch out and write new information on your card, so throw away those cards and have new, up to date ones printed.
    5. If possible hire a graphic designer to help you. They are professional and know what works and what does’nt.
    6. Maximize the usability of your card. You’re not limited to only the front of your business cards. Use the back of your card for more information. Keep in mind that people often write on business cards, so leaving some white space on the back is generally a good idea.
    7. Your company name or your title tells someone what you have to offer. If it does’nt, add some words to explain what you do. Showing what you do makes you stand out. Let everyone who sees your card know what services you provide.
    8. Avoid making the following mistakes when you have your cards made. It can cost you dearly.

    Having a card that doesn’t stand out in the crowd.

    Your card must look great, feel sturdy and clearly define what your business does – and you and your card will be remembered.

    Technology makes it easier and more affordable than ever to have cards designed and printed that will get someone’s attention and at the same time look businesslike and appealing.

    Don’t have a card that’s a mystery to everybody.

    You are not going to get many calls if someone looks at your business card and can’t tell immediately what your business does.

    A card with information overload.

    Too much information printed on your card will make it look too busy and totally unprofessional. Keeping it simple is best. It’s necessary to have your name, your company, what you do, and why you should be used – but supply all your contact details; you want to be easy to reach.

    Using too small text.

    Using a small font, you may be able to supply more information, but what good is it if people can’t read it? A good guideline is to use a type size no smaller than 7-8 point. Make your company name the largest and your name and maybe your cell number a bit larger than the rest.

    Not using colour properly.

    Use colour in your cards to brighten them up and make them appealing. Avoid printing a dark colour on a darkish background or a light colour on a light background, for instance printing grey on white to make it look like silver. It just does’nt work.

    Strategically distributing your cards to help your marketing campaign.What does it help you to have a box full of business cards if they’re not being used to market and promote your business?

    Always keep some of your cards on you wherever you go. Hand a card to someone when appropriate, and while you’re at it, don’t hesitate to give out more than one. Invite people to pass the extras along to others who might need your service. You might be surprised at how often this can result in a referral.

    Don’t be afraid to post them on public bulletin boards, stick them in doors or leave them in bowls for free drawings where your target audience might see them.

    Ask affiliated businesses to allow you to display your cards, such as a hardware store if you’re a building contractor or a plumber.

    Capitalize on natural opportunities to hand them out when you’re talking about your business or someone asks how to contact you.

    Keeping in mind all of the above ideas and information, your business card will definitely work for you and attract business – and still at a very affordable price.