Once you’ve started a blog, you want to tell people about it. There are plenty of ways to spread the word online, but what about when you’re meeting new people or run into a brand rep somewhere? Surprise, surprise: you need business cards! Today I wanted to share a few resources for getting business cards printed for your blog, and also chat about how you can make your card stand out.
THE QUICK AND DIRTY METHOD
If you’re a new blogger who’s still using a basic template or hasn’t done a ton of customization to your site yet, ordering a simple, clean, pre-designed business card can be an easy and affordable way to go. The investment is minimal, and at the end of the day, you have a piece of paper with your info on it that you can hand out to anyone who asks — after all, this is the most basic purpose of the business card!
Many sites and print companies offer templates that allow you to just type in your info and order. Some templates even have basic color and font customization options (sites like Minted and TinyPrints are good resources for this– see our resources guide below!).
GET IT CUSTOM
If you have spent money on branding your site and developing a unique logo or mark, it makes sense to continue that branding through to your business card. Ask your graphic/web designer if they’d be willing to design business cards for you (often, if you ask early in the web design process, the cost can get folded in and could be slightly discounted). Even if you sync up with your designer after your blog design has launched, I’ve found most designers don’t charge too much to put together business card files — assume anywhere from $50-$200. From there, you can take the file they’ve given you and upload it to a business card printing site, and have it printed on your own. Or, take the file to a local printer, and they can print the cards for you too.
If you don’t want to spend extra money having a file created, ask your designer for a high resolution copy of your logo, and let them know you’ll be using it to print your own business cards. Many printing services (Moo is a great example) offer templates to their clients, so you can upload your artwork, get it appropriately placed, and make sure it looks fab, all without the help of a designer. Some of these templates can also be exported to programs like Illustrator or Photoshop, so you can add in other information or text, all on your own.
THE LETTERPRESS QUESTION
Letterpress — the Rolls Royce of paper printing design. If you’ve ever gotten your hands on a thick, luxurious business card with letterpress printing, you probably understand the appeal. This type of printing makes for cards that feel extra special — but they’ll cost you. If you’re creating a custom letterpress design, expect to shell out at least $100 on having your cards printed up (and that would likely be for a very small quantity). Increasingly, some letterpress shops offer pre-made templates, so if you want a clean and simple letterpress look, with no branding specific to you, it is possible to get it for a lower price. I think letterpress is one of those things that when done with the right fonts, colors and design, it can make a wonderful first impression. I’ve also heard of people who shelled out a bunch of cash on letterpress cards, and thought the final product wasn’t worth it. So think carefully about how your design would look in letterpress form before you take the plunge!
WHAT TO INCLUDE
If you’ve ever been to a blogging convention, conference, or event, you’ll know that business cards literally come in all shapes and sizes, with a huge variety of information. Obvious things to include? Your name (duh!), your blog name (right-o!), and/or your website URL (of course!). From there, I think it’s open ended. Many people choose to include their social media handles, as well as an email address. You don’t have to include your phone number — I mean, do you want people calling you? — but you could. Perhaps you want to include the city you live in, just so it’s easier for people to remember where you’re based. An address? Probably not necessary.
But even within these items, there are a lot of different ways to present the info. Some people set up a single URL through a service like about.me, and publish that URL on their business card. Arriving at their about.me page gives the visitor all the necessary links to social media platforms, websites, and email addresses. On the other end of the spectrum, I’ve seen cards that list several URLs — perhaps to a blog, a website, and a shop. If the layout is done right, it can still look good, and gives the recipient all the info they need in one place.
Within blogland, there’s also a big opportunity to create really creative cards. I use thick, simple black and white cards that on one side say my name and “lifestyle blogger”; on the reverse side, there’s a space for me to write a note to the person about where we met, along with a basic URL to my blog. Jessie from Style & Pepper has business cards in shape of an old school pepper shaker. Laura from A Girl Who Makes gave out business cards at Alt one year that had pretty thread wrapped around them, to “tie up loose ends” as her card said (and the thread also reinforced the fact that she was a crafter). There are so many creative routes to go!
Finally, here are a bunch of resources for designing and printing business cards of all types.
The site offers pre-designed templates, many of which can be slightly customized in terms of color or shape. You can also order many of their designs with “Triple Thick” paper, giving the cards a more luxe feel.
A huge collection of pre-designed business cards (aesthetics vary), plus a few that are even free. VistaPrint is popular for folks who already have their cards designed and just need a place to print their files for an affordable price.
A great resource for both chic, modern pre-designed cards and to print your own. I’ve personally had cards printed through Moo’s “Luxe” line, which prints the cards on extra thick card stock. You even have the option to order tipped edges in a few different colors!
Type in “business cards” and a bagillion options come up. Need I say more? Ditto for typing in “letterpress business cards”.
A great resource for printing your letterpress designs. Their website has lots of info about the letterpress process, too, and they include a downloadable template so you can prep your artwork on your own.
Another online letterpress printing shop!
This shop offers letterpress printing, as well as pre-made letterpress designs for $75.
A quick note about letterpress: these days, there are literally hundreds if not thousands of studios nationwide. If you’re interested in supporting a local business, try typing “Letterpress printing [your city]” into Google and see what shops are open near you!
Now let’s hear from you. Where did you print your business cards from? What are best practices when designing and printing cards? And what’s the coolest business card you’ve ever seen?
Images all from this awesome roundup of 44 letterpress business cards. Check it out for tons of design inspiration, and a few more printing shop referrals too!