I went armed with a new box of business cards for that first business breakfast meeting at a local hotel. It was my first appearance at one of these meetings, so I made sure everyone received one of my business cards, and I made sure I collected one of their cards too. I received one from the local builder that told me he "accepted no job too small". Another card from the IT expert told me he offered a service second to none". And so it went on.
This was the first time I had met any of these people and I soon realised how important the humble business card was. The business card in this situation was like a mini brand statement. Yes, I know the business card is just a tiny piece of card that contains company contact details - telephone, email, mailing address, web address and so on. But in fact, I was beginning to realise that this business card was a lot more important than that. It needed to evoke some kind of personality about that particular business. And it needed to leave a memory.
After the meeting I returned to my office and emptied out my jacket pockets of the business cards. My intention was to enter the details of all the people I had met that morning on my computer. But sifting through the cards I noticed how the quality of these business cards varied - not only in the quality of design but also in the quality of the printing and the thickness of the card. The business card from the accountant was printed on the very flimsy card - it seemed rather lightweight to me, and I thought, is this the right kind of feel for an accountant? After all, good accountants don't come cheap. Then there was the business card from the computer company. This business card really stood out. The design, although simple, was modern and understated. The finish on the card had a kind of silkiness to it and the card was about twice as thick as the accountant business card. In general, their card had an aura of quality and professionalism about it - and I thought, maybe this is a company I can trust.
After looking at all these business cards I had collected I then started to scrutinise my own business card. The design was a little dated and looked like something from the 80s. The card was a little thin. So I decided to have my business cards professionally designed and I wanted a feel of silk like the card from the computer company - I later found out this was called matt lamination. Speaking to Uthara Print they were able to advise me of the different cards available, and they had one of their designers design a modern, professional looking business card for me. Nowadays business cards come in an array of different finishes and specifications spot UV business cards, with a high gloss area to contrast the matt background round cornered cards, embossed cards and even cards cut to a special shape. This is why it is best to consult a professional graphic designer who can advise you of the best finish for your card.
Uthara Print suggested we use spot UV on the card to draw attention to my logo. Spot UV is where they coat an area of the print with a high gloss varnish, and used in a clever way can really add something special to a design. I now feel my business card punches above its weight. And I am sure in the long run the extra time and investment I have put in will be worthwhile.