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Does Your Business Card Yell "Amateur"

Nov 29, 2007
Business cards or calling cards have long since been a productive tool of marketing, especially for the small business person. You probably knew that. But what you may not know is, you may be handing out cards that make you appear to be cheap, cheesy and amateurish.

Not exactly the kind of impression you want to make when you hand someone your card, yes. Well then, here are the hands down, slam dunk design tips that can change that, pronto. So, heads up and take note.

There are some very basic elements you want to incorporate in your marketing strategy regarding business cards for them to be a winner. They are professional appearance, feel, and logical information.

Hiring a graphic designer is not really necessary but can be quite helpful. Professional designers know how to combine colors and typefaces to give your business the best look on paper.

After the design work is done, you still have to get it printed and unless you know how to create the digital file for a print professional it is best to leave that job to the designer. Of course you can always go to a print professional that has design services and make it a one-stop-shop.

Logos are nice to have on a business card but not essential. Logos assist to set a theme for your business. So, eventually you need some kind of graphic befitting your business baby.

More importantly, you need to include your contact info, such as name, physical address, phones numbers, fax, email and website. If you are living with your mother and have a freebie email account, you're an amateur not ready for a serious business card.

Always Use Quality Paper. Business cards that you print on a desktop ink jet scream "Cheap Amateur". Yes, you can buy card blanks at the office store but the paper is thinner than standard business card stock. You want a professional feel, not that flimsy stuff. Your print professional will be pleased to show you every kind of paper available. The typical Print pro will have hundreds of paper sample swatch books.

Advertise Your Specialty, don't list it. This is where is helps to know what you are good at. Prospects need to know more than your name and phone number. Put a big bold tag line, service, product, or guarantee on your card. You have to give your prospects a reason-why they should hold on to your card.

If you don't have enough room to list everything you think a prospect should know, use the back of the card. If that still isn't enough room, design the card as a fold-over. Yes, it costs much more, but you'll have four sides to work with. Fold-over business cards are definitely distinctive and not run-of-the-mill. Definitely not amateur or cheap-o

Here's a tip: Ask your print pro if you can see some business card samples. They usually have 100's. You can also go to a home style restaurant and find a wall with business cards. Check them out for design features.

Buying in your area is going to be your best bet for the long run. That is likely what you want your customers to do isn't it? Then you may as well begin by establishing a relationship with a graphic designer and/or printing professional. These folks will keep your print marketing from yelling "AMATEUR"

Last tip: When you attend a networking meeting or some place you are apt to meet prospective business contacts it is always good to have a supply of cards at hand. When you meet someone new, be the first to ask them for their card. Naturally, they will return the request.
About the Author
Martin Stephens is the Director of Marketing for West Printing Company Download the Exclusive Special Report 20 Insider Tips Discover the value and profit a print professional can deliver.
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