Business Card ideas?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Antonio Diavolo, Dec 20, 2017.

  1. So there's a long story to this. For the past 3 or so years, I've done this volunteer magic thing where I teach some basic card tricks and games to poor children. It's really fun.

    Anyway, it turns out that one of the owners of the yogurt shop I work at was part of the organization that does this massive charity event each year. She asked if I could do magic while Santa visited the yogurt shop. I did magic for the kids who came in and even showed the owners and Santa himself some tricks in the slow parts. Santa was actually the other owner's dad (the store is owned by two families) and he asked if I'd do some walk around magic at this party thing he's having.

    His son, the owner suggested I design some business cards and even said he'd pay for the first 100 for me, which was nice of him. I just have to send him a design.

    Now I've seen magician cards that react with heat to reveal the message or work as a magic trick themselves. I can't do something like this as many seem expensive to make and cumbersome.

    I know what important information I need to include and that it should be clear and concise on the front of the card, but I need ideas to make the design creative and unique.

    I was thinking I'd leave the back blank to use as a billet but I've also been toying with including a hidden card reveal or something within the design. I don't want it to look cheesy though.

    I've also been thinking of cool ways to present the cards, besides using them as billets for other tricks. I've seen people pull them from a fire wallet when people ask for a business card. I've also seen the idea of running one through your hand to "print" it. There's also an app that makes it look like the card prints into your phone and then you pull it from your phone, if that makes sense. It's made by the same people as Card2Phone so if you know what that is, it should make sense.

    Also, any advice for this type of walk around magic? I feel like I have a pretty good idea what to do but it's always nice to get tips from the more seasoned professionals. Just any advice at all will be welcome: dos and don'ts, pocket management, audience management (a lot of them will be drunk apparently), suggestions for effects, etc.

    Tl;dr, I need ideas for a magic business card design as well as ways to produce or present the cards, as well as tips for performing at the party thing. Thanks guys!
  2. The app you are talking about that prints your business card is fantastic. I am always surprised by how good the reactions are. I would keep the business card simple and professional, I dislike the look of most magician's cards. They seem so cheesy and lame, like they are trying way to hard. A simple modern business card and the app will go a long way in my opinion. Maybe you could have a card force reveal of some kind if you feel like you need a little bit more.
    RickU and ParkinT like this.
  3. I agree. I wanted it to be distinctly a magician's card but I don't want it to look cheesy.
  4. First off, congratulations! That sounds like an amazing opportunity.

    I would suggest this:

    1. Send an Email to Jamie D. Grant. His Email address is sendwonder (at) gmail (dot) com.

    2. In this Subject Line of that Email, write "Free Dozen."

    3. He'll reply (because he's a super cool guy), and send you the first twelve chapters of his wonder book, "The Approach" for free.

    4. "Business Cards" is the title of Chapter 6.

    5. Go to town!

    While I can't speak a great deal to magician's business cards specifically, I do know a lot of professional and semi-professional performers (actors, spokespeople, models, etc) in the Metro Detroit area get their business cards from moo (dot) com. They make great, IMO, massively professional looking cards.

    Making magical moments for people who might not regularly get the opportunity to experience such things... I think there are few better ways in the world to spend one's time. Best of luck, and I hope you post updates on how the entire endeavor goes!
  5. Perhaps use "InstaGrab" to print the card? may be a fun idea! You could have them name a card and then pull it from their phone. Say "whoops, this was supposed to be your card... but it is actually MY card.... but oh wait.... You said 6 of diamonds right? Interesting because on the back here is the card you chose... iono something like that? lol
    FirstFlourish likes this.
  6. I like it! Is instagrab customizable?
    Jedimasterjt likes this.
  7. Good suggestions!

    You could also take a photo with your phone of your business card on dark table, then a second photo of just the table from above so it looks like just a blank background. You could show the spectator the photo of the business card, while holding your actual business card against the back of the phone - thumb on the face of the phone, fingers in the back holding the card in place. Then, you could do the effect of pulling your business card out of the phone by pulling your hand to the right and simultaneously swiping with your thumb so that the photo with the blank background comes into view as the actual business card comes into view gripped between thumb and fingers. I have seen this done with a playing card, but should work just as well with a business card. Also, you could have a prediction written on the back of the business card (of a playing card you forced earlier or whatever), and after you produce the business card, flip it over to show the correct prediction, then give the spectator the business card.
    Antonio Diavolo and ParkinT like this.
  8. I don't like having the reveal on the card. Seems like a gimmick (in the non-magic sense). Also, they assume that all cards are printed the same. If you want to do a reveal, write it in yourself so each card is different.

    My advice is to design a card that reflects you and differentiates you from others.

    Some ideas include thicker card stock, nicer paper, unique fonts, different colors, etc. check out Staples and Vistaprint for ideas and designs. I would do double sided with name and contact info on front and then name and "products" (e.g. Strolling Magic, Kids Shows, Mental Magic, Batchelorette Parties, etc ).

    Learn the Out to Lunch principle. Also, Wayne Houchin's Counterfeit can be done with a business card.
  9. There's a few things to remember about business cards.

    1) Many people don't keep them. What I've been told is that a lot of people take a picture of the front of the card (contact details) and then throw it away. I know when I'm given business cards I tend to put them all into one place, and then end up throwing them all out when I go on a cleaning binge.

    2) The business card will be a little representation of yourself. If it looks silly, you look silly. If it looks lame, you look lame. If it's got magic tricks on it, you look like someone who can only interact by doing magic tricks.

    3) A card's purpose is to give a way to contact you, and make sure they know who they are contacting. I'm a fan of a minimal approach - name, title, logo, contact info, blurb. Picture on the back if you have high quality photos.

    When I say "blurb" I mean one sentence that sums up what you offer to people. Mine is "Modern performances exploring ancient traditions". I'm not actually a fan of listing the types of events you do, personally.

    4) Don't get too off the wall with the design. You'll see folks who have oddly shaped cards, or they fold up or something. That's nifty and all, but you know what else it is? Difficult to put into a normal card holder, which means they get destroyed in someone's pocket or thrown away. Don't make it annoying for someone to keep your info.

    5) Another thing to keep in mind is how you normally advertise. I honestly book most of my gigs on word of mouth. People hire me because they've seen me perform somewhere, or because someone they know has seen me perform somewhere. I don't have to have "bizarre magic - hypnosis" on my card, because people who are hiring me already know what I do.
    Jedimasterjt and Antonio Diavolo like this.
  10. The reason the owner offered to get me my first 100 is because he can get a deal at Staples through someone he knows.
  11. Reality One, I don't believe I made my meaning clear - I meant that the reveal would be handwritten.
  12. I do believe there is a "Nothing ventured nothing gained" or "nothing to lose aspect" to the business card issue. It's true that many people don't keep them, but if any of the people who put them with other business cards decide they want you for their event before they ultimately clean house and get rid of them all, then you are the winner. On the other hand, if they want to contact you, but have no way of doing so, then you are the loser. I've had quite a few people over the years contact me to book me for an event using the email address or phone number on the card I gave them. You can get decent cards in bulk (or design your own on various sites) relatively inexpensively. Even getting one decent booking within a year or two from someone to whom you gave your card would repay the modest investment in the cards 10 or 20-fold. So it's more than worth it to give them out even if the vast majority of them are thrown out or never looked at by the recipients. Personally, I never just pull out a business card out and give it to someone unless they request it - otherwise I always do some magic involving my card, such as a prediction or mind-reading effect, and then give it to them...
    Antonio Diavolo likes this.
  13. I definitely think one should have business cards. In fact, I just redesigned mine and had another batch printed up. It's just also important to know that they're not going to be the passport to being "a professional". You probably won't get much business strictly because of a business card, but as you said, Al E Cat Dabra, it only takes one gig to make up for the printing of the lot.

    Though I will say that if your business card looks awful, you may in fact lose business because of them. Better to have something plain and professional, than something crazy that makes you look bad.

    Like I said, it's a little representation of yourself.

    Oh! One tip I saw that I like. If you give your card to someone who involved in booking talent for anything, ask for their card as well. That way you can follow up down the road to stay on their mind.
    Antonio Diavolo likes this.
  14. ChristopherT has made several important points in relation to the issue of business cards. I hadn't really considered the idea of asking for the card of event planners and then following up down the road, but I am going to implement that immediately. As the saying goes, "The squeaky wheel gets the grease."
    Antonio Diavolo likes this.
  15. Exactly. Also, when cold-contacting businesses and such, the common wisdom is that it takes about 5-6 times contacting them before you're likely to book anything. That's because you have to get in touch with them at a time when it's relevant to what you want -ie: you have to get them when they are thinking of putting together an event.
    Antonio Diavolo likes this.
  16. Yup! You can pull anything you want! I just reviewed it if you wanna have a look! :) link is in the "Reviews" section here on the T11 forums
    Antonio Diavolo likes this.
  17. Wait... will he really because I want to read it.
  18. If I get a minute I'll post my buisness cards past and present.

    You can get 250 for $14 at Staples.

    Also, heat activated ink is cheap. Frixion pens are your friend.
    Justin.Morris and Maaz Hasan like this.
  19. I don't know how he does it. But Adam Wilber has a visually appearing business card on his Instagram. You should check it out.
    Antonio Diavolo likes this.

    Scroll down.

    Second paragraph.

    He'll Email you the first 12 chapters of his wonderful book, absolutely free.

    Then you'll buy a copy (I predict you will, at least).

    And everyone will have won. Easy! :cool:


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