When you look at 17pt business cards with gold foil stamps, rounded corners or transparent material, you will really marvel at how far business cards have come. Here, we will take a glimpse at the history of business cards before they turned into what they are now.
The history of business cards can be traced back to 15th century China, when visiting cards were used. In the 17th century, King Louis XIV made visiting cards de rigueur for the aristocracy. For the 18th and 19th century, visiting cards or social cards were used by the upper and middle classes. It was also during this period that businessmen in London used trading cards to promote their enterprise.
Business cards during these early times were very small and simply, typically printed with the name and title of the caller so that a good first impression can be left on the receiver. It was during the 18th century that cards started being representations for entrepreneurs. During the 20th century, trading cards were replaced with business cards, which pretty much looked as they do now. Today, you will typically receive impressive-looking 17-pt. business cards from business owners, no matter what the nature of their company is.
When having such business cards made, why does it pay to invest in thick material like silk business cards? Because you definitely want to make a good first impression. With the history of business cards that has transpired over the years, they are fortunately still very much a part of modern times. If you want customers to know that your business actually exists, it pays to make an excellent first impression by having good quality business cards printed out.
A lot of entrepreneurs know that they need to order business cards, but not all are aware of the importance of having an effective one. How will you know if a business card is effective or not? From the minute that you hand over your card to a prospective client, he or she should appear suitably impressed with the quality. There are even individuals who will jot down notes at the back of the card to remember who you are, exactly. This is definitely a good thing as far as first impressions go. If you will hand over a card which is flimsy and does not have good quality, clients will not remember your brand as easily.
What it Takes to Have an Effective Business Card Made
Now, in order for you to have an effective business card made, what are the things that you need to keep in mind? Take a look:
• You should know the purpose of the business card.
First, what’s the purpose of having the business cards made in the first place? That piece of card should contain information about the name of your business, the nature of your work, what product or services you offer, and how to get in touch with you. If the nature of your business is not obvious once they read your company name, make sure to insert a line or two about what it is that you do.
• Make sure that the information is accurate.
Nothing’s tackier than a business card with ballpoint pen corrections on it, so make sure that the information printed on the card is accurate. If you know that you will be changing your contact information soon, only have a small batch of cards made to tide you over until new ones come out of the press.
• Order business cards from reputable printing companies.
Companies like BlockbusterPrint.com specialize in designing and printing business cards. There are different paper types, thickness, coating and material to choose from – and all cards are made using HD color printing.
• Pay attention to the details and overall design of your card business card.
Finally, pay close attention to the details and the overall design of the card. Your card should represent the image that you’d like to portray as a brand. By taking these things into consideration when you print business cards, you can rest assured that they can be an effective marketing tool for your brand.
In business, first impressions definitely last. Handing over a black-and-white, flimsy business card to a client will not have the same impact as premium business cards printed in full color and thick, high-quality material. Remember that as an entrepreneur, you would like your clients to think that they are getting the best value for their money when dealing with you. A good quality business card will help you achieve just that.
What Makes for a Premium Business Card
So what makes for a good, high-quality premium business card? Take a look at the following list:
• The material used
With companies like BlockbusterPrint.com, the standard size of a business card is 3.5” x 2”. You can take your pick from different materials including thin, 14-pt. paper which is the cheapest and more traditional. If you would like to invest in premium business cards, it is better for you to use thicker paper like 17-pt. cards with 50% or 60% the thickness of credit cards. There are also different finishes used in the paper including textured or spot gloss.
• The quality of printing
You don’t actually have to worry about the quality of printing when dealing with BlockbusterPrint.com because they use HD color printing. It’s guaranteed to be the highest quality offset method in the industry.
• The overall design
While you’re still in the process of having the card designed, make sure that it will leave a lasting impact to your customers. If you’re in the construction industry, design the card in such a way that it incorporates a clear photo or a hard hat – along with a line or two of what your business represents.
• Other cool features
Finally, the good thing about choosing silk business cards is that you can go crazy with all the cool features that you can order. There are plastic or rounded corner business cards that you can have made. Silk cards can be foil stamped with silver, gold or other metallic colors to make a huge impact. Textured cards can vary from pearl metallic, ones with a nature feel or linen. As you can see, the choices of cool features in premium business cards are practically endless, so have one made for your business now.
When you order business cards, the card itself may not necessarily sell your business, but it does keep your company name in mind. Let’s say that you are in the professional carpet cleaning business and you handed over your card to a housewife whom you met at a networking event. She may not have a use for your card right away, but when she does need professional carpet cleaning services, she will remember having received your card and give you a call.
This is precisely the reason why you should keep a business card handy at all times. You’ll never know when you might run into an individual who could use your products or services, so it pays to be prepared.
Tips to Remember when Ordering Business Cards
If you have yet to order business cards, here are a few tips to remember to turn the task into a successful one:
• Make sure that the information printed on the business card is correct. Nothing says tacky than a card with another name, contact number or address handwritten over the original printed text. If you know that you are changing your contact number soon, only print a handful of cards. Then, take the job to a professional printing company so that you can have a decent batch of cards made.
• When attending networking events, place your cards everywhere. Make sure that you have a handful in your pocket, car, bag, desk, etc. You might even find a need for one when attending a family dinner or personal social events. You’ll never know who you might run into who could use your business.
• If you have a cute, little container for your business cards, do not bring them at crowded networking events where time is of the essence. However, you can still use them in the office or at meetings where you know you will not be pressed for time.
After you print business cards, these tips would be handy when you are already in the process of distributing them.
Whether you’re an old timer or a newbie in the business industry, the one task that you cannot get away with is business card printing. Through business cards, you can hand out your contact information to the people who you are supposed to be dealing with on a regular basis: customers, clients, business partners, suppliers, network contacts, etc. Thankfully, there are companies like BlocksbusterPrint.com which specialize in printing out professionally-made yet affordable business cards.
Now, after having the business cards printed out, remember that you cannot simply hand them over to everyone you meet like you are casually distributing $20 bills. After business card printing, there’s an art and etiquette to the distribution that you need to keep in mind. To get you started, here are a few quick tips on the etiquette when handing over your business cards:
• Make sure that you are handing over a good quality business card to make a good impression. A limp, cheaply printed card will not give customers a professional image of your business, so pay attention to details like stock paper, quality of printing, layout and the design of the card itself.
• When attending meetings, exchange business cards either at the end or the beginning of the discussion.
• When attending trade shows or similar events, keep your business card handy at all times. Don’t bother using a case holder because they need to be distributed fast, and with minimal fuss.
• Never use business cards with information that is not updated. Nothing says tacky more than business cards with handwritten corrections or notes on the supposedly pristine front part.
• When accepting business cards, do not hesitate to write a note at the back so that you can remember information about the company or the person who gave it to you. If you were given the card of a possible supplier, write a short note at the back so that you can remember the details of the meeting the next time that you give them a call.
As you can see, business cards online are an essential part of running a business – but equally important is the manner by which the cards are distributed to contacts.
If you’re just launching your business, you might need to have 1,000 business cards printed out. The problem is that you do not have the funds to spend too much for it since you’re just starting out. How can you have the cards printed out without spending a lot, while still leaving a lasting impression to your clients by having a professionally-made business card?
Take a look at a few tips that we have on how you can save money when printing out a big batch of business cards:
1. Make a comparison of the rates offered by different printing companies.
Fortunately for those who need to have 1,000 business cards printed out, there are many online companies which specialize in printing such promotional tools. Ask for an initial price quotation or check out the website so that you would have an idea about what the options are in terms of paper type, thickness, etc. Does the company offer bulk discounts? By doing your research, you can look for a reasonably-priced printer so that you can get the exact number of cards you need.
2. Know how to use your business card as an effective marketing tool.
Do you really need that many business cards? What about reducing the number of copies and supplementing your promotional materials with cheaper printed items like flyers? Better yet, harness the power of social media and get the word out there about your brand. As long as you have an official Facebook fan page, a website or a Twitter account, you can reach out to your target audience without having to spend too much on a lot of copies of business cards.
3. Have an idea about how much it would cost to have 1,000 business cards printed out and make a final decision from there.
If you must print this many business cards, have an idea about how much it would cost. Compare the type of paper to be used, the resolution for printing and other factors – then make a decision from there. If you need to spend a few cents for better quality, do so if the investment is well worth it.
Follow these tips so that you can print the number of business cards you need without compromising on price and quality.
If you’re planning to order business cards online, you are definitely on the right path. There are many benefits to doing so, which we will learn more about in the next section. In the meantime, let us take a look at the reasons why it pays to have business cards made in the first place. Business cards are a small piece of cardboard paper which contains essential information about a person or a company. Having business cards printed out makes you look professional, sets your brand apart and it can be used for networking purposes.
Why Print Business Cards Online
When having business cards printed out, you basically have two options. First, you can visit a traditional printing company and ask them how you can have business cards printed out. Second, you can look for a company which specializes in printing out business cards online. Although there’s nothing wrong in choosing the first option, there are a lot of benefits for going with the second option:
- The process of having business cards printed out is as easy as 1, 2, 3.
Online printing companies already have websites where you can place your customized orders. You simply need to specify which type of business card you want, how many pieces you need to have printed out, what the design looks like, etc. Once you are satisfied with the design that they will send to you, all you have to do is wait for the cards to be delivered straight to your office. It’s that easy!
- Online printing companies offer cheaper rates.
The competition in the printing industry is quite stiff and this benefits you as a customer in the sense that you can get cheaper rates for the business cards that you will order. Also, since these companies do not have a physical office to maintain, the lesser overhead expenses that they have can be passed onto you in the form of lower rates.
- There’s a shorter turnaround time.
Finally, you can expect your business cards to be delivered within a shorter time span. Some companies specializing in printing out business cards online even offer rush delivery services for an additional cost – so you can have those business cards ready to be distributed to your contacts in no time at all.
If you need to order business cards, you have two options: getting the services of an actual printing business, or placing an order online. Here’s a quick comparison between the two:
- Traditional Printing Services
For this, you need to walk into the office of an actual printing company which accepts printing jobs for business cards. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with having your business cards made the traditional way, but it would take a lot of effort on your part to oversee the design, drive over to the printing press, choose the paper, etc.
With an online printing service, you can go through the whole process of having your business cards printed online. You can simply visit the website to order business cards, specify the number of cards you need to have made, the thickness of the paper, the type of paper to be used and the other details. If your card will be designed by a professional graphic designer, the final design can be sent through e-mail so the entire transaction is done without your having to visit a physical office. Once printed, the cards will be delivered straight to your doorstep.
Of course, you also have the option to not order business cards at all. With the Internet, you can easily make all your contact information accessible via your website. If you must distribute business cards, it should be to your most important clients and prospective customers. This way of doing business will still spread the word about your brand, but save you money on having business cards printed out – while doing your share in helping save the environment as well.
What is the role of premium business cards? In today’s world of social media, print and television, image plays a big part in branding your business. As such, handing over a flimsy, cheaply made business card would not do at all. To give your clients and prospective customers a good impression of your brand, you need to have premium business cards made.
Factors to Consider when Having Premium Business Cards Made
When having business cards made, you need to recognize the difference between cheap and premium business cards. Here are a few factors to consider for that:
• The resolution of the image.
In the process of looking for a printing company for your business cards, carefully check on the resolution of the image. The higher the resolution, the better. A good quality business card should have at least 300dpi or dots per inch resolution so that the image would look sharp against the paper.
• The quality of paper used.
A standard-sized business card measures 3.5” x 2″, but for premium business cards, it’s the thickness that you need to pay attention to. A high-quality card should be printed on thick, chrome coated paper which has anywhere from 14pt, 16pt, 17pt, 20pt and 22pt. thickness.
• The overall look, feel and design of the card.
Lastly, make sure that the overall look, feel and design of the card has class and quality attached to it. If you can, look at samples of the actual premium business cards made by the company. The text and images on the card should be professionally designed and when you match this with good quality paper, you can have a premium business card to proudly hand over to your clients. They will surely be impressed.