I could probably count on one hand the number of professional business cards I've had in my life. They just never seemed necessary... my jobs never required me to deal with external clients or it was so seldom that I made new contacts in my day to day job that I never needed cards.
And then came the blog.
I've only had a blog business card for the last two years or so. In all honesty, in the beginning it felt really weird to have one at all. A card for my blog? Calling myself a blogger? Wasn't blogging just a hobby? Why would I need a card?
Then I started being invited to media events and attending blogger meetups and I realized having a business card is a good idea. Like we discussed before, networking is a key component of growing your blog. Hit it off with a fellow blogger you met at a meetup? Give them your card and you may soon be collaborating on a project. Or maybe you had the chance to meet an editor from one of your favourite design mags? Your card can direct them to your blog (and your magazine-worthy home).
A preview of my latest business cards. The lovely Lindsay designed the back, and I designed the front. Printed by moo.com. The rounded corners make me smile :)
But what to put on a business card? It depends. You need to have two things for sure: 1) your name, and 2) a way to reach you. Whether the best way to reach you is via email, through your blog, or on the phone - tailor the card info to the way you work. Beyond the obvious, here's a few other things you might consider:
- QR Code: You've probably seen QR or Quick Response codes popping up with more frequency. These black and white square matrix barcodes can be scanned by smartphones, providing an quick and effortless link to any website. Why make someone type in your url when then can scan your code and arrive there instantly? Here's a site where you can generate your own QR code.
- About.me: If you're like me, you are probably over-connected: Blog, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Flickr, LinkedIn, Google+. But which of these do you include on your business card? You can simplify and create an About.me page where you can link to all your homes on the web. It also gives a you place to provide a personal profile and put a face to the name - a great way to enhance your personal brand.
- A tagline: Taglines are a great way to convey a lot about you in a few short words. They should be memorable and concise. Here's a great example from The Blog Fairy - "dazzling designs for web & print":
- Creative design: In our increasingly paperless world, holding a beautifully designed business card is one of life's simple pleasures, don't you think? I saw a lot of great cards at Alt and some of my favourite trends were
- packaged cards - individual cards in glassine envelopes or little hand-stitched linen bags
- kraft/natural paper - gives cards a nostalgic, old school feel
- gold lettering - Gold is everywhere, not just in interiors. This card is a lovely example.
- painted edges - Aren't these persimmon-edged cards by Jordan Ferney so pretty? I'm sure you could do this as a DIY ;)
If you're in need of a bit more business card design inspiration, check out my Typography board, this and this Flickr collections of cards, or this fabulous roundup of business cards from Alt Summit attendees...
P.S. BlogPodium is just over two months away. You'll definitely want to have some business cards on hand ;)