Printing Your Own Business Cards
Professional business cards can help you make a more formal presentation of your credentials, as well as allowing someone to immediately lay their hands on your name, title, company affiliation, address and phone number. If you currently work at home, you may question the necessity of having business cards, but you could be surprised at how often they can really come in handy as a medium for contact.
Business cards take up little space, and with today's newest computer publishing programs, you can easily make up your own business cards, saving money and exercising your creative muscles in the process.
Having your own business card makes it easy to exchange information with a potential client or networking colleague. You can begin your own file of business cards, separating them into your home vs. work. Business cards help you remember other people's names, and let them remember yours as well. We live in such an incredibly busy world that it is all too easy for a name to completely slip your mind right when you realize you need it.
Business cards present a very professional impression of you and your business, as well as telling others about yourself and your work. An attractive business card represents your business in your absences so you need to think long and hard about the first impression your card will leave.
Making Your Own
Making your own business cards allow you to be creative and express yourself in a variety of ways. You can buy clean-edge business cards which come ten to a sheet at most office supply store. Avery is a popular brand, and you can either purchase a heavier weight ivory card, or a normal-weight card which comes in white or ivory. The clean-edge cards are easy to separate once printed, and it is virtually impossible to tell that you made them up yourself-if that's a consideration. You will be able to print both back and front, or only one side, and have a virtually unlimited amount of colors, fonts, style and size for your business card. There are lots of images you can download for your business card, or you can even use photographs from your own computer photos.
You can find several free programs online for making your business cards, or can use your Microsoft Word program, or even a purchased publishing program such as Print Artist or Adobe Print shop. If you are only planning to make cards for yourself, and won't be making very elaborate ones, then you can probably easily get by with Microsoft's business card template.
If you are using Microsoft Publisher, you can either print the cards yourself, or send them to a commercial printer in your area, although the new inkjet desktop printers give almost as good a finished product as a commercial printer. The only advantage of commercially printed cards would be in the availability of specialty paper rather than color printing on white or ivory cards.
What Goes on My Card?
You will want your company name and/or logo, as well as your name and title with the company. Your mailing address, phone, fax numbers, e-mail address and website are all crucial components of a good business card. Your challenge will be to squeeze all of this information on the front of a business card yet making it easy to read. The back side of your business card is a good place to add any additional information your potential clients might be interested in, such as a map to your business, driving directions, coupons for money off a service or product, a special referral discount, company motto, product list or photograph of your product.
Test your design on plain paper to see how you like it once it's printed before printing an entire sheet of cards, as they can look different than they do on your computer screen. Printing your own business cards can be fun and easy to do, giving you a sense of accomplishment when you see the final product.