Business cards don’t need to suck anymore than customer service, tech support or some weird alley signage.
Many years ago, there was a great agency that wrote, “There’s no such thing as a boring product, just boring marketing.”
I elaborate on this in today’s One Minute Wednesday:
How to Build a Brand in 2020
There are also those who say, “There’s nothing new under the sun” only to dissuade you and me from creating and exploring new options.
I am certain there were those who before The Beatles said there’s nothing new that can be done in popular music.
In fact, the record company Decca passed on signing them to their label with the now-famous reply, “Guitar groups are on their way out, Mr. Epstein” (Brian E[stein was their manager at the time).
And that defeatist mentality can be any field of the arts or creation, or gestures or social media, or cooking or writing.
Yet, it’s that restless fascination of what COULD BE that disrupts the trajectory of the jaded “been there, done there” folks and stirs up what’s possible.
The same is true for business cards.
The Wrong Questions Everyone is Asking
True, business cards may have less distribution than they used to with so much going digital, but let me ask you this:
“When you give somebody something, as an expression of your brand, do you want it to be ordinary or extraordinary?”
This applies to everything from the “big stuff” to the small details including business cards.
The same is true for business at any level.
- Do you want customer service to be ordinary or extraordinary?
- Do you want the memory of interacting with you or your company to be ordinary or extraordinary?
- Do you want to be predictable, boring them to death? Or do you want to stir their imagination and fill them with delight?
Why I Wake Up in the Morning
It’s to stir up what’s possible.
To wipe out doing the same crap, only on a different day.
That doesn’t excite anyone and will never build your business or brand.
So instead of me telling, I’ll show you how I do this for my clients and help them make a lasting and memorable impression.
Business Cards: Show and Tell
The examples below are all real, and for the record, I design cards that are two-sided, with one side the “sizzle” and the other side “the steak (the particulars and contact information). That’s simply my approach.
When Montecito Landscape came to me, they’d been servicing one of the highest net worth ZIP codes in America.
But they needed to up their game. So I rebranded them with oval cards that resembled coasters you would place underneath an afternoon iced tea or drink. Within a year using these along with the other parts of the rebrand, they hit 7 figures in revenue for the first time in over 4 decades.
When this amazing philanthropist who works with community leaders (to help get kids off drugs and restore lives back to what they could be) came to me, I told her that I’d develop a new brand and something to give the many people she encounters. What she told me after the fact was the response from recipients was off the charts, from the name to the feel and look of these “cards.”
It’s not a formula approach — it’s a feel and looking at the impression one wants to leave.
Here are several companies in various different industries that have gotten rave responses to their business cards.
This approach was even applied to a startup in the HVAC industry, transforming its brand to this:
When one of New York City’s premier landscape designers came to me, he “had a hunch” he needed to elevate his game. Why? His clients were the super affluent, some in the millionaire status, others in the billionaire status. So he knew the details were important.
That’s when I revamped his entire brand, sending his sales into a whole new range and a lasting impression that left the very affluent very impressed.
Did this new rebrand help him land appearances in an upcoming show on Bravo TV? Not certain. But it certainly couldn’t have hurt.
And just so I don’t leave anybody with the idea that this only applies to certain companies or industries, here is what I did for the United Cerebral Palsy chapter of Philadelphia. This incredible organization needed a rebrand that elevated their presence and widened the impact of whom they could help.
And last but not least, I thought I would share my own cards that use texture, paper, and design to leave people in a somewhat mesmerized state of mind (alongside a shot of my view of my office from my desk).
If these spark your imagination, then I’ve done my job.
And if you need help, you know how to contact me.