Far from being ‘old-fashioned’, business cards continue to offer effective means of promoting companies. When you meet a new potential client or partner in person, it can be super-convenient to be able to whip out a card to hand over with your corporate details attached.
However, if you are seeking to design or, indeed, redesign business cards in 2023, you don’t want those cards to be left looking behind the curve. That’s why you should consider utilising business card design elements like the forward-thinking ones detailed below.
We will see people’s profile images on business card — whether that image is a realistic or more abstract illustration. For example, while you could go for a straightforward photo, or even one in monochrome, you might want to apply a more creative touch if your brand would suit it. If you sell comic books, for example, imagine seeing a hand-drawn, comic-book character version of yourself on the card.
Essentially, the more often you work with clients on a face-to-face basis, the more easily an image of yourself can ‘work’ on your business cards.
A little goes a long way, so the saying goes — and a minimal business card design certainly can, allowing the most important details on the card to come to the fore.
As for what exactly those “most important details” should be, The Balance implies that the textual information on your business card should be limited to the following:
- Job title
- Email address
- Phone number
- Website address
- Three or four social media handles
A principle of minimalism is: “Just because you can doesn’t mean you should.” So the beauty of creating a minimalist card is that you only include what’s important – instantly becoming more impactful.
Embossed or raised details
Embossed business card on the Duplo DuSense.
When you hand a business card to someone, their first reaction might not be how it looks but instead how it feels as they initially touch it.
For this reason, you might want your business card to come with a few raised or embossed elements — especially since they aren’t exactly standard on business cards.
This will convey an expensive and modern look, and thus give the impression that your company is financially successful as well as pioneering.
Giving your business card a 3D effect like this can also enable you to replicate the textures of materials other than card; think the likes of wood or suede.
Bright colour combinations
In an Entrepreneur article, Jason Fell — a former managing editor of the website — writes: “Statistics show that people keep bright-coloured business cards 10x longer than ones that look plain.”
It therefore stands to reason that your business card design can stand out if you weave such striking colours as vivid pinks and Tron-style neons into a cohesive whole. You do, however, need to make sure this design stands out for the right reasons.
One good rule of thumb is to make sure the colour combination you go for aligns with your brand identity. You could, for example, take inspiration from your corporate website’s design.
Graphic design that… doesn’t look like graphic design
The best business card design is, naturally, a memorable one; one that makes people do a double take and think, in the right way, “that’s a business card?”
One good way of provoking this kind of reaction is adding an element or two that doesn’t immediately look as though it was printed on the card — even if it actually was.
Making the grade with… a gradient
Gradients are, in more than one sense of the phrase, neither here nor there — but you could be surprised by how many of them pop up on business cards as 2023 unfolds.
Of course, a gradient could literally pop up — and it could be your business card that is literally unfolded — if you are especially thoughtful with how you design the card’s physical structure.
Here is a look at some of the quirky possibilities created with Duplo machines.
Talking in code — QR code, that is
In the modern age, many smartphones have QR code scanning functionality built in as standard — and Digital Trends has a guide on how this works in both iPhones and Android handsets.
Furthermore, as QR codes are essentially just black-and-white, maze-like squares, albeit wonderfully elaborate-looking ones, they can be included on business cards with relative ease.
Insider explains various means of generating QR codes — and, once you have placed one on the card, recipients would easily be able to scan it to, say, load your website or save your corporate contact details to the phone.
Clean designs eased by NFC connectivity
QR codes can certainly make business cards more dynamic — but, on your own business cards, also potentially take up precious space you might have wanted to leave blank.
That’s why, though the COVID-19 pandemic has given QR codes renewed relevance, they could soon be increasingly supplanted in this respect by NFC (near-field communication) tags.
A Forbes Advisor article penned by editor Kelly Main and contributor Chauncey Crail states: “Most smartphones released after 2017 have built-in NFC scanners that can detect NFC tags.” Furthermore, these tags “can easily be embedded in standard business cards.”
Through handing out NFC-equipped cards, you can enable the recipients to access your website quickly — as an NFC scanner can read an NFC tag simply by being held close to it.
Different physical shapes
DIcutmbusiness card on the Duplo PFi 310
Traditionally, a business card is rectangular. However, this isn’t to say that you can’t experiment with the shape of your own business cards.
For example, you could make these cards’ edges round instead of angular, or even give a card a cutout in an unusual shape that helps to evoke your brand.
It’s hard to get a much more modern business card design than an eco-friendly one — especially given how awareness of the climate crisis has increased.
Even if you just opt for standard cardboard, you could include a note encouraging the card holder to recycle it. This is, after all, a material that can easily be placed straight into a standard recycling bin at home.
However, as part of a wider, ambitious drive to make your organisation much more sustainable, why not fashion a business card from compostable paper that can be placed in soil and subsequently left to decompose without harming the environment?
An especially adventurous idea would be to design a card similar to one used for promoting the 2019 video game Manifold Garden: a card from compostable paper also containing seeds.
Consequently, the person who receives the card will be able to plant and water the paper before waiting for the seeds to sprout. The resulting plant will be a longstanding reminder of the card.
Do you have the right finishing technology for these business card demands? Contact us today.