People are always saying that first impressions matter, and it’s true. But a first impression is not just walking into the audition room or interview, it’s not just the hand shake or CV and head shot, part of first impressions are business cards. I just printed a new batch of business cards this week and feel compelled to share what I know of their importance, and how one might want to design them, to anyone without a business card. (Update: I’m currently working on designing a different version for the Binky Ink side of things. However, I need to first design a logo. Once I’ve got that, I’ll be sure to share that with you all, and update this page once more.)
Like I’ve said in the past, I’m not a graphic artist, I had these done by someone I know, the BinkyProd logo was made by brother in law, who at the time knew more about Photoshop than me, but being an artist, I knew what I wanted as the design, all I needed was someone to execute it. In this way, I can help you get inspired. I mean, let’s face it, what are you going to put on it? What colours are you going to use? What font? It’s all important because this is what people will look at and it has to convey who you are, what you do and make them want to contact you. It’s how they’ll remember that conversation that occurred on the street when they met you. And it’s an image that has to represent your personal brand.
I went to a show one time and I DID NOT have my business cards. I was talking with someone who dances, someone who was in the show, telling them how I make demo videos of various styles, and I didn’t have my business cards. (Shoulders droop, Binky shakes her head and sighs.) You never know when you might need them: random encounters, inserts in leaflets or DVD boxes, attached to a CV, an official meeting with various people in your field of business who want your contact info, your website. Oh, and don’t do like me, don’t leave the old ones at home just because they’re old. If the logo’s the same and the contact info is valid, even if some descriptive info is different, have them on you! I’ve added my Twitter and YouTube on there by hand, in marker, delicate print, so that it looks decent, but I didn’t want to waste the ones I already had or waste any money which I didn’t have. When I go through these and need more, I’ll redesign the back side with the extra contact stuff and print those.
So, you can have a one sided or a two sided business card design, depending on how much you need to put on there. Most individuals in a department or singular artistry will use one side. If you’re like me and are part of a company or have many skills or services you want to include on there, you can use 2 sides. You can choose one side for a logo and skills or services, and the other side for contact information. For your logo, think what image describes you best. If your company has a logo, use that, otherwise, think of a nick-name or something relevant to your service. For example: Binky Productions has a slinky in its logo, Binky Ink will have a feather and ink jar with some parchment (I knew what I want for it already). Since I’m the company president, I chose that particular image as a logo because Slinky is a name people sometimes call me. (Trivia! lol) As for what I’m planning for Binky Ink, since most of what I write is Fantasy Fiction and I like medieval themes, it fits who I am as a person, and therefore fits my personal brand. The colours will obviously include green, because again, it’s part of who I am and has become part of my personal brand. So, like me, I suggest you choose a font that you like and colours with which you associate yourself (favourite colour, colour that fits your name, such as Amber, etc). I chose two colours to offset each other so that it’s not too much of the same (for Binky Productions): Green and blue. They go well with the yellow from the logo.
When putting down your services and/or skills, choose the ones you excel at most, the ones you want to offer. Don’t put something for which you’re still training or which you’re not sure you’re motivated to do. And when you’re putting your contact information, the style is purely up to you: e-mail before phone number or vice-versa, that part is all you. In fact, the whole card has to be all you, you and your personal brand. In the end, if you like the design, then you know you’ve got it. If people who know you look at it and say: “Hey, this business card is totally you!” For sure you’ve got it.
(Update: If you’re still unsure, I highly recommend checking out Roberto Blake’s YouTube Channel. He’s a creative entrepreneur and has several excellent videos about personal brand and designing logos, and such. He also has a bunch of other things. It’s certainly helped me, since my first designs, to figure out some other things I want to do in order to better develop my personal brands with Binky Productions and Binky Ink. By the way, this blog is not sponsored by Roberto Blake, but his content has helped me a lot, so I’ve got to share it with you all, perchance it might help you as well.)
Here’s what mine looks like.
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