About one year ago, I began the process of building my own brand. My background, you might think, would make this easy. In some ways, yes, but it also means that I knew all too well how important it was to get my brand in place before I could put myself out there. So, I followed my own best practices -clarified my service offerings, developed my brand story and prepared select marketing materials. For me, this included a website, a flyer and my business card… and that’s where I become, let’s say, “preoccupied” …my business card. I did three different runs before I was happy. And, I’m glad I did it.
As an independent consultant, the two marketing tools that I anticipate using the most are 1) my website and 2) my business card. I don’t mean to imply that these two items are equally valuable, but every touch point is a representation of your brand and an opportunity to impress. Furthermore, the business card is part of an initial introduction. And, we all know, you don’t get a second shot at a first impression.
Being in the marketing field, every marketing piece (even a business card) is also a sample of my services. So, I aim to impress and open conversation. I want my business card to reflect quality, my attention to detail, and even pique prospective clients’ interest in how I could help them.
So, why did it take me three runs to get it right? I wanted premium grade printing at economy pricing. Guilty.
My first print run was expedited in order to be ready for a meeting. I didn’t have the opportunity to review cardstock and print options, leaving me with a thin, rather standard card. At first, I thought I might have been too self-critical, but when I heard myself making excuses while handing the card out, I knew I’d be ordering a second run.
I decided to experiment and try a minicard. I knew it was smaller than a traditional business card, but the thickness was awesome, the price seemed right and I thought the size would be a fun twist, but… no. Just, no. Learn from me and don’t try to repurpose minicards as business cards.
So, I did more research and found a producer that specializes in unique business card materials. The options are amazing, the pricing is fair, and they’re based in Canada, which, for whatever reason, makes me happy. I fantasized about getting cork business cards, doing die-cuts, spot printing and the works. But, really, I just wanted a noticeably premium quality card. Done. I love them. And I’m pretty happy with my rate of “nice card” responses. My winner: offset printing with a silk matte finish from jukeboxprint.com.