How to Design a Business Card

How to Design a Business Card 

Business cards are still the most widely used form of marketing there is. Even with social media and cell phones, the business card is the quickest and most transportable form of information around. So what should you advertise in such prime real estate to be noticed? Just like any other strong marketing material you need to keep in mind the basic principles of design when laying out your business card.

You use to have to consider how much money you were willing to spend before you could figure out how many colors you were going to use in your business card design. But with digital printing presses becoming the norm it’s much more economical to print a four-color process card. With four-color process the sky is the limit with colors; however, you can still get a really clean and memorable design using only two colors and really nice paper stock.

A picture is worth a thousand words

You could just put some words on your card but that would mean someone would have to read it to know who you are and what you do. If you have a well-thought out image to go with your information, then someone could take one glance at it to determine what it is for before getting close enough to read the type.

Three questions to answer when choosing an image:

  • What image will convey what you do with one glance?
  • Does it look good at a small scale?
  • Does it have a clean area for text if you are planning to use it on the whole card”

Sample scenario: Victoria Miles is a wedding planner. When you think of wedding planners you could think of many things that go along with the idea of a wedding: cake, flowers, a dress or rings. So as not to be confused with a cake maker or a florist, Victoria has decided to go with wedding rings for her image. Let’s take a look at a couple of images she found.

Picture 1  wedding-rings

 

Picture 2bc-picture-2

Both images feature two wedding rings and both images have a similar pallet of colors; however, one is a better image to use than the other for a couple of reasons. While you could extend the white space on the right in picture 2 to make room for Victoria’s information, it would feel cramped and would be overshadowed by the image. Picture 1 on the other hand has a lot of unencumbered space that text would lay nicely on top of, allowing Victoria’s name to take center stage. Another reason picture 1 is the better choice for a business card is the impression it gives from a distance. Picture 1’s image is strong and from a distance still comes across as a pair of wedding rings, while the rings in picture 2 do not stand out as much and are upstaged by the box they are resting in. From a distance it is hard to distinguish immediately that it is a pair of wedding rings.

Say it like you mean it
Now that we’ve chosen the image for Victoria’s cards we need to add her information to the card. Easy enough, right? First, let’s go over a few key design points:

The result
Take a look at Victoria’s card below. Notice even though we had the option of using every color under the sun because she is getting a four-color process card we went with black text because it stood out the best on the photo. We even put a little bit of a glow around her name to help it stand out from the background. We put emphasis on her name and how to contact her by varying the font style and size.

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Clean, elegant and effective is what Victoria got with this business card design. Remember your business card can be the most effective advertising tool if designed properly.

 

WePrintQuick.com gives you professional quality printing for a great deal less than you would expect. We’re an online service provided by Eveready Printing, Inc.

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PRINTING 101

The decision to order printed material to represent your business is a big one with much thought and time involved.  What printer should I choose?  What should my budget be?  How can I know that I am getting professional product at a reasonable price?  What kind of customer service should I expect to receive?  What do terms such as 4 over, cmyk and proof mean?  This column is intended to introduce new entrepreneurs, as well as those who haven’t ventured into the realm of professional printers, to concepts they should know and understand when attempting to enter into a printing relationship.

 

My name is Lisa Blevins, My expertise is in Marketing and Advertising. I currently work for WePrintQuick.com, a division of Eveready Printing. I am new to the printing industry and in the last few months I have enjoyed a crash course in Printing 101.  I have gone from knowing very little about the printing world to being able to function at a reasonable level. I wanted to share what I have learned with you in the hope that my knowledge will help you advance your marketing skills as a new entrepreneur, and maybe — just maybe — bring you to weprintquick.com when you are ready to start your printing relationship.

I use the word relationship because the company you choose to handle your printing needs will be involved with your business as it grows and evolves. Choosing a printer that you can trust; one with excellent customer service and high quality products; will be very rewarding to you and your business as it grows.  They will come to understand your needs as well or perhaps even better than you understand them yourself, and they will help you create high quality promotional material that will reflect on your professionalism and impact the seriousness with which consumers will evaluate your products.

When you are shopping for a printer, no matter how big or small your project, take time and really research the company.  Search Google for feedback on product quality, consumer complaints or rave reviews.  If the printer is a division of another company, how long have they been in business?  What is the reputation of the parent company? Are they open during hours that meet your needs, or do they offer service through email?  This first step is as important as any you will take because if your printer offers a great product but no customer service, how do you resolve issues?  Or if others have received bad product and have written about it, perhaps you shouldn’t assume you’re going to get great product.  The BBB offers an accreditation for businesses that have a good reputation, so be sure your choice is accredited. 

Once you make your choice, then you must learn the lingo of printing.  This is where all the fun happens!  You must decide your paper weight, how much color you’d like and where you’d like to put it.  You must provide artwork in the correct format, and when you get it all together, you’ll have to look at the proof before it is printed and make any necessary changes then, because afterwards it is too late.

 Determining the weight you need your paper to be isn’t terribly difficult if you work with a printer who can give you advice.  Basically the weight refers to how much 500 sheets of a particular paper weighs.  So, smaller weights are thinner sheets, while heavier weights reflect thicker paper.  This can be complicated by the standard size of the paper and whether it is coated, uncoated, satin, glossy or any number of combinations.  I will discuss choosing the correct paper at another time, but if you have any questions, please feel free to email me.

 Color is also an issue in the printing world.  Most people think in terms of RGB (red, green, blue) but printers work with CMYK (cyan, magenta, yellow and black). When sending art to your printer be sure that your files are converted to CMYK so that your color registers accurately.  You should check in advance to ensure that you know what file format you need to have your graphics in as well.  For example, WePrintQuick.com, accepts all types of commercial files including .pdf, .tiff, .eps and even high-resolution .jpg files , but that may not be true at every print shop.  When asked what choice of color you want, the term 4 over or 4/4 might be used.  This refers to the four colors (CMYK) on one side or both.  To clarify, if you only want printing on one side, you might see 4/0 – four colors on one side, zero colors on the other.  In contrast, 4/4 refers to 4 colors on both sides of your document.

When your order is ready to be printed, the printer will send you a “proof.”  This is either an electronic or actual physical copy of what your printed item will look like.  This is your final chance to make sure that everything is how you would like it to be.  When you receive your proof, check the spelling, examine the placement of text, and look closely at your colors.  If you see changes, now is the time to make those corrections.  Be sure to communicate closely with your printer at this time to ensure that you are happy with the product you are going to receive.  If everything looks good, be sure to communicate that to your printer as well, so that they know they are ready to print.

This should get you started towards a successful print marketing campaign, whether you are ordering business cards, postcards, brochures or other marketing materials.  I welcome your questions about how working with a good printer like Eveready Printing Inc., / WePrintQuick.Com can help build a reputable company image and boost sales. We are a full service commercial printer that has been supplying quality products and services since 1919. We offer offset and digital printing, variable data and personalization services, a complete in house bindery, mailing and fulfillment services and wide format printing. We are constantly expanding our list of capabilities and services. We are a family owned and operated company, big enough to handle the most demanding jobs yet small enough to care about each and every job we produce.

Anything I can do to help increase your odds of success in the business world, I encourage you to email me at Lisa@weprintquick.com and I would be happy to assist you.

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Growing Your Business In A Down Turned Economy

Growing Your Business In A Down Turned Economy

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Whether you are trying to start up a new business or keep a struggling one afloat, even in a down turned economy, you still must market yourself. However, how can you spread the word about your business when profits are soft and costs are high? Here are some ideas of way you can expand your marketing without expanding your budget.
Build your identity
If you are starting a business, you must have an identity to which customers can relate. The most important part of this is having a set logo, color palette, or slogan that is easy for your customers to remember. This identity will be placed on every business card, piece of stationery, brochure, or advertisement that you publish. If you don’t have a definitive identity, your printer may be able to help you come up with a logo design that works for you.
Business cards
If you spend money on nothing else, you should always invest in business cards. Business cards allow you to share the identity you have created with everyone you meet. You can hand them out to people that visit your business, give them away to contacts you meet on the street, and stick them into every single envelope that leaves your business. They are inexpensive to produce, can start the brand recognition process, and provide the recipient with all the contact information that they need to reach you.
Brochures
Brochures are another marketing tool that are relatively simple to produce and not too expensive to have printed. Your brochure should highlight specific products or services that you offer and include eye-catching pictures. Text should be short, easy to read, and to the point, and the entire brochure should be visually attractive. Brochures can be sent in the mail to interested clients, set out on a counter for customers to pick up, or left behind after you have given a sales pitch.
Website
A website is one of the ways that you can tie all of the previous items together. Domain names are relatively inexpensive, and you can print your website information on your business card. Once on the site, customers can learn more about your business, order brochures, view your presentation, or contact you. It allows you to have a constant presence on the internet to garner clients once unreachable through traditional methods, as well as a way for customers to contact you without having to pick up the phone.
Social Media
As social media giants Facebook, Twitter, Google +, Pinterest, and Linked In play an increasingly integral role in society, most business owners are struggling with the question if they should integrate social media into their company’s marketing strategy? The answer is, yes!  It can’t be overstated how important social media is for business. Whether you are a small business owner, or somebody more focused on large business habits and outcomes, social media matters. Regardless of industry, too, social media has proven to work across the board for many companies.
Here are some tips on how to incorporate social media marketing into your marketing plan:
  • Use social media to ONLY complement your existing marketing activities, not to replace them.  
  • Identify what you want social media to achieve
  • Research the tools available
  • Create a strong profile
  • Avoid persistently broadcasting
  • Respond to feedback
  • Measure your progress
  • Be patient — it will take time to learn how to use social media successfully, and to build your reputation within your chosen networks.
With a little planning, an experienced printer, and some well thought out designs, you can have a marketing plan that is inexpensive to implement yet highly successful. We Print Quick offers a wide range of services to compliment our premium print production services. You can make your life easier by working with one reliable company for all your production needs. WePrintQuick.com gives you professional quality printing for a great deal less than you would expect. We’re an online service provided by Eveready Printing, Inc.

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