A business or executive card will still be with a potential client long after you have left him. It therefore a good idea to spend some time considering the impression you would like to leave behind, before getting your cards produced. Business or Executive cards have been around for hundreds of years and most people use a fairly standard design. If you’re in a conventional industry then it may pay to have a conventional business card, but most people will want to stand out from the crowd.
Your business card is likely to end up in a business card holder with hundreds if not thousands of other cards. If you opt to go down the cheapest route and order your cards from one of the top online printers your card could quite easily end up in a card holder right next to someone else with exactly the same logo and design. There may be many designs available on the web site but some will be far more popular than others.
On the other end of the scale you have the landscape gardener who impregnates his card with seeds so once watered it can grow into a mini garden, very pleasing to the eye and certainly sets him apart from others, but there are not many business card holders that can accommodate a living card so it’s likely to get separated from the rest and ultimately end up in the bin. It’s not always a bad thing for a card to be separated from the pack, a card made as a fridge magnet is an ideal solution for a fridge repair man.
If you’re opting for a conventional type of business card, the first consideration would be the orientation, landscape is bar far the most common and the majority of business card stands are in landscape format. Important if you’re considering distributing your cards in bulk or considering putting in a plastic business card holder in a newsagents window or supermarket etc. There is a school of thought that says by printing in portrait format the recipient has to take an action (turning the card) to read it and by taking this action he/she is more likely to remember the contents. No sure if everyone would bother to do this in Tesco’s however.
Next thing to consider is size, not all printers use the same standard size, most business card stand, card holders and business card dispensers will accommodate landscape cards up to 92mm wide and portrait cards up to 55mm wide, but not all. If your hoping the recipient will carry your card in their wallet rather than storing in a business card holder (for example a taxi firms card) then a smaller card no bigger than a credit card would be advisable.
Now you have the size and orientation of your card time to think about what to put on it. A logo or cartoon catches the eye and as long as it relates to what you do, it’s a good visual reference for the potential customer.
Don’t be too artistic with your choice of fonts, it may look good on your computer screen but once printed it may be difficult to ready and not everyone has 20/20 vision.
In the west we typically read from left to right and from top to bottom so put the most important information in the top left hand corner or across the top. It’s also good to remember that most business or executive card dispensers, support cards from the bottom and so the bottom of your card can be hidden from view, even in clear plastic business card holders the bottom of your card will not be readable.
Finally choose the right grade of cardboard for your business or executive cards, don’t just accept the printers standard board, it would be a shame after all the agonizing over the design to end up with something that looks cheap.