The ubiquitous business card is a critical tool for communicating your brand. Make sure it reflects your image and that you maximize its usefulness.

Here are 12 tips for better business cards:

1.      Print the card using color. Study after study shows that color printing significantly impacts the readers’ ability to notice and remember.

2.      Don’t cram too much printing or too many images on the card; leave white space for an easy-to-read look.

3.      If you have your photo on your card, have a professional photographer take your photo; look your best. The photo card is a common practice in some industries such as real estate.

4.      Include your tag line and logo. Beware that some logos look great when full-sized but lose detail when shrunk down for a business card. This is a design issue to avoid. In addition, some businesses or industries don’t put logos on cards; beware of protocol.

5.      Make sure that the information on the card is typo free and accurate. If the information changes, buy new cards. Handwritten corrections look amateurish.

6.      Use a standard-size card, since business card storage systems presume a standard size and shape.

7.      Get your cards printed professionally on quality paper; although the do-it-yourself business cards for the laser printer are getting better, they still look homemade to me.

8.      Include all pertinent information such as phone, fax, website, e-mail address, mail address, cell phone, etc. Duh!

9.      The back of the card is a great place for a mission statement, product information, or something that you want to communicate to everyone.

10.  Don’t put pricing on the back since business cards are evergreen and prices are not.

11.  It is OK to list services or products on the card, but remember that plans change and your cards could quickly be obsolete if you make changes to your product line.

12.  Your business cards should reflect the theme, color, and logo used in all your marketing communications including your website. Send a consistent message.

John Bradley Jackson
© Copyright 2010

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