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Old 4th May 2010, 03:51 PM   #1
mattcarpet
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Default Make Sure Your Business Cards Stand Out

This list comes from a recent blog post of mine on my website, but rather than making you guys read it there I offer the opportunity to read it here, for convenience and because it should be read.

Color: The majority of business cards are a wasted opportunity using black text on a white background and nothing else, a little color goes a long way in helping a card stand out from the pack.

Picture: Itís pretty rare to see a picture of the card owner on a business card, but having your picture on your card helps you stand out, think about it, in six months a person you met one time who happened to keep your card isnít going to remember you personally from the font you chose. If you want to be personally connected with your cards in peoples minds then include your picture.

Vertical: Iíd go as far as to make up a figure of 75% or more of all business cards are horizontally laid out, simply switching to a vertical layout differentiates you from the majority, even when you ignore the rest of this posts advice.

Black Background: It doesnít have to be black but as the majority of business cards background color is white, using the opposite color for your background is sure to aide your card in standing out from the pack. Color may cost a little more to get printed, but if your card is thrown away after you leave or tossed aside because it doesnít leave an impression then it was pointless to hand it out no matter how cheap it cost to print.

2 Sided Printing: Not uncommon, but just enough different from a good chunk of plain jane cards that it is almost guaranteed to help you stand apart.

Picture: Just because you choose to not use your own photo doesnít mean that you need to have a large area of negative space, give the client something to look at and the card will more likely be put someplace safe or better for you shown off as an example to other people the client meets.

If you think your business card stands out already then why donít you test the theory, spend a couple of days gathering business cards, and when you have a relatively large amount put them into a large pile and notice what stands out, chances are itís cards with characteristics from above. If your card doesnít catch your eye, you should start thinking about a redesign, and keep in mind just how important a marketing tool a business card can be, spending a little to get it professionally designed might just be worth the extra cheese donít yah think?

Always ask yourself ďWhat makes my business card stand out?Ē Use the question on any marketing materials your business uses and youíll begin to see a major increase in client response to your marketing.

http://hymesdesign.com/business-card-stand-out

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Old 6th May 2010, 10:41 AM   #2
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Thanks for the tip. I really love the vertical one. In fairness I have not seen a vertical card as yet.

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Old 6th May 2010, 10:56 AM   #3
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Matt,

One thing to mention when dealing with a black business card - make sure you set up your card so that the printer actually prints BLACK and not 85%-90% grey. A lot of offset presses don't give a really nice, rich black ... but with the right settings you can obtain a really good, solid black that helps the color pop!


Can you please give me your thoughts on a card I recently designed for a real estate company in my area?




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Old 7th May 2010, 05:43 PM   #4
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Great list of tips mattcarpet. I have also found for myself that the texture of the paper being printed on makes a huge difference on how the business card turns out. Paper that has too much texture, found in many card stocks, can make the picture really turn out poorly. Again, thanks for the tips. I love making my own business cards, for my small business and just as a hobby. Another tip, try cutting your own business cards (if you're dealing with too many).

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Old 10th May 2010, 02:36 PM   #5
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Amen on the true black, I didn't have much experience with actual printing when I first started out as designer fresh out of college and made that mistake twice on personal projects before I stumbled across what I was doing wrong, in the form of advice online...

Anyway as far as the card goes it's eye catching, the purple is nice with the gold door knocker etc, and the picture grabs the eye very well, it's a nice size. Looking at it reminded me of another quick tip that improves most print design as well, curves, not straight edge shapes used in a design break things up visually.

I'm sure there are posts online explaining why, I don't know the reason, but I do know that a simple rectangular shape with lettering in it is far less eye catching than even the same rectangle with rounded edges.

I guess maybe as humans we like to look at curves more, they bend the eye or some such thing most likely. I know I like my women to have curves, so the theory extends beyond design for me...lol

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Old 10th May 2010, 02:39 PM   #6
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For paper texture I find that I love the feel of most "green" cardstocks, bleeding is always a potential risk on certain paperstock of course, there are ways to reduce the risk of bleeding however, maybe soon I'll get a list together, and after I blog about it i'll share it on the forum...

I'm lazy with research unless it's paying though so it'll be a while lol.

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Old 11th May 2010, 09:00 AM   #7
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Useful suggestions to make your business cards stand out. I like simple but attractive cards which can be easily read without giving any strain to your eyes.

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Old 17th May 2010, 06:36 PM   #8
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"I know I like my women to have curves, so the theory extends beyond design for me...lol"

Lol. Good one. Have you used a corner rounder with your cards? That is a pretty fast way to had some curves to an otherwise bland corner.

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Old 25th May 2010, 09:11 PM   #9
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Actually the company I order my printing from offers the service at a small additional charge so I've never had to do it manually, never really thought about how it was actually done lol.

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Old 31st May 2010, 12:02 AM   #10
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Regarding the output of black, one of the best ways to ensure a very nice black is by using what's known as a Rich Black.

One of my favorites in CMYK is a 40% Cyan, 40% Magenta, 20% Yellow and 100% Key (black). Another option is 60/60/40/100.

Whichever you choose... make sure the designer, firm, or agency working on your print materials uses a Rich Black when printing in 4 color.

Don't settle for a washed-out black.

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