Business Cards are a tough one – in the modern world today, these are often, so undervalued. Yet I sit here at my desk today with a massive pile of business cards in front of me all of which (for the most part) look and feel the same. Except for Mark Baiden’s of One Stop Cloud – that feels different, and that is what has inspired me to write this post today.
Firstly, let me tell you why I like these business cards!
Mark is a fellow associate of mine involved with BNI UK, we are both in supporting roles as well as being members (Mark happens to be a member of the biggest chapter in Europe, with 104 members as I type, and they pass £1Million in referred business every month)
Mark’s cards are clean in design, they have character and they are the “right” size (85x55mm finished) He’s used a caricature of himself on them and he’s made use of the increasingly popular Soft Touch Laminate, and a Spot UV! Which makes me think ….. I meet a lot of people, networking is an integral part of what I do, and amongst some 200 cards on my desk, Mark’s just stands out.
Business Cards are easy!
Right? even with design, Yes, even if you aren’t fluent with Adobe programs, Canva makes the design element easy now for pretty much anyone! This article isn’t talking about design, its the more practical stuff, the bit that we are “good” at, the actual printing.
But, there is something I need to tell you! Business Cards can be easily purchased online and pretty much the universal standard now is “Matt Laminated, 400GSM” print spec – thats a very decent finish, but its the finish that “everyone” is using! And I’m sure you don’t want to be like “everyone” do you?
No1 – Rounded Corners
So, this is such a simple process! You literally add rounded corners to whatever or however you finish your cards – whether they be Matt Laminated, Digitally Printed, Soft Touch Laminated. Gives a little twist on your standard corners, and can be used in conjunction with other finishes too (see below!)
No2 – Spot UV
Do you have some text, logo or something that you would like to emphasise? Then Spot UV could be just what you need! It’s shiny and makes colours “pop” With it taking on more than one format too – any good print production facility should be able to help you choose between the standard Spot UV or the raised Spot UV.
No 3 – Kraft Recycled
Are you environmentally aware, or does your business have a quirky edge to it? If so, then perhaps that vintage looking Kraft uncoated brown board would work as your card base? Certainly does stand out in a sea of White business cards. These also aren’t expensive, and almost always work out better when finished with just 1 colour print
No 4 – Gloss Laminating
Want the all over shiny look? Then it has to be the gloss laminate finish for your business cards. Albeit, you can’t write on these with a biro, like you could on the unlaminated, matt, or soft touch laminate – but think about what you do? Are you a tradesman? Then this could be a cool finish on your card. Hard wearing and really durable – ideal really if you are involved (off the top of my head) painting and decorating, building and landscaping businesses!
No5 – Foil Blocking
This is a delight – although quite an expensive process especially if you are only printing small quantities – but its an age old printing method that works on every kind of paper board you can think of, and available in many colours, not just the metallic gold and silver that we are so accustomed to seeing
No6 – Foil Laminate (my personal favourite)
This is relatviely new to us as a business, and I’ve purposely saved this until the last- mainly because it takes all of the beauty of the traditional Foil Blocking with the ease of the Laminating process. So it makes producing the foil effect much more cost effective, on the smaller run quantity cards. With a wide variety of colours, the foil laminate can be applied on plain stock or sit on top of a soft touch laminate. This for me is the stand out feature right now for business cards. This allows you to work with as much or as little of the card canvas as possible! It can only foil on solids, so some doctoring may be needed on your design, but nothing that can’t be fixed.
In a world now where we are fast paced and often don’t give much that second glance, you need to be the difference and if you are serious about business and your lasting impression the business card is as important today as it was 15 years ago! Technology now and what is possible makes something as humble as a business card, pack a neat punch!