How to design a business card~ Essay #5 by JDG

Jamie D. Grant

theory11 columnist
Oct 12, 2008
189
1
Vancouver
www.cardsinabottle.com
Hiya Gang!

I have a collection of over 1000 different cards from corporations around the globe and I can tell you the single most important piece of information that is revealed on the best ones...

The contact information.​

Okay, that sounds ridiculously obvious. But it's often ignored. People, especially magicians, get so caught up with logos, design, tricks, and colours, that it seems they put their phone number and e-mail almost as an afterthought. And here's the thing: If someone is given your card, and you're fortunate enough that they pull it out one day because they want to get a hold of you, then what they're looking for is your phone number.

I can guarantee that they're not calling you because your card is super-awesome. They're calling because they have an event to put together and they remembered who you are. And now they want to communicate.

So, if nothing else, you can go with...



Jamie D. Grant
Master Magician



(604)-555-5555

or even,



Jamie D. Grant
magician

(604)-555-5555



You'll see that the largest piece of information on the card is the phone number. I can't stress that enough. You need to assume that the event planner has poor eyesight and is super stressed out about having to organize whatever function it is that got thrown onto her table. The last thing she cares about is whether your card is blue or green. All she wants to do is to be able to call and ask how much you cost.

Now, that said, you can put a lot of time and design into your card- I know I have. Just be sure that your contact info is the most accessible. And, you know what, even if you had a card as simple as the examples above- it would still work wonderfully. Compare that to:



JAMIE D. GRANT
Master Magician

"Vancouver's Greatest Magician"

(604)-555-5555
magic@jamiedgrant.com

Sure, that helps my ego. But it's not going to help me get the moohlah. If it takes someone one second of effort to do something, they'll skip it and go on to something easier. That's human nature.

So, in summary:



NAME
WHAT YOU DO

CONTACT



All my best,

Jamie D. Grant
www.cardsinabottle.com


Further Reading~The Essays:

Rates FAQ 2.0 (how much to charge) by Jamie D. Grant Essay #1
The single most important thing you can do... Essay #2
How many tricks should you learn? Essay #3
Tips or Wage? ~more thoughts from JDG /Essay #4
How to design a business card~ Essay #5 by JDG
Who I am~ Magic Friday ~ by Jamie D. Grant
Developing Your Sets - Essay #6 from JDG
Do you need a stage show? Essay #7 by JDG
Crushing the Haters! Essay #8 by Jamie D. Grant
Shaky Hands & Falling Cards. Beating Anxiety. Essay #9
Deflecting Thoughts, and False memories. Essay #10
Stage Show Thoughts. Essay #11
How To Promote Yourself. Essay #12
 
Last edited by a moderator:
Dec 30, 2009
57
0
card begone! idk why i posted my card, i must of been sleep deprived as i dont remember doing this.... not a good idea to post my phone number online...
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Casey Rudd

Director of Operations
Staff member
Jun 5, 2009
3,106
2,975
Charleston, SC
www.instagram.com
Gary, sorry to say but I do not like your business card. It doesn't make me want to book you. The big streaks of blue make it kind of hard to see, and you aren't wearing professional clothing, like a vest, suit, ect. It also is too dark to see your face that well, and it looks like you took the picture from your webcam. Brush up on all of this to make it look simple yet decent. Go with Jamie on having your phone number bigger and maybe only one number. Also, get a professional sounding e-mail address. Trust me, making sure everything looks professional is key to having them book you. Once you get this stuff fixed I'm sure it will look a lot better my friend.

-Casey
 
Nov 8, 2007
1,238
3
Gary, sorry to say but I do not like your business card. It doesn't make me want to book you. The big streaks of blue make it kind of hard to see, and you aren't wearing professional clothing, like a vest, suit, ect. It also is too dark to see your face that well, and it looks like you took the picture from your webcam. Brush up on all of this to make it look simple yet decent. Go with Jamie on having your phone number bigger and maybe only one number. Also, get a professional sounding e-mail address. Trust me, making sure everything looks professional is key to having them book you. Once you get this stuff fixed I'm sure it will look a lot better my friend.

-Casey
Ditto everything Casey said. Everything he said is spot on and good advice.

(Also, there is no distinction between the two phone numbers you have listed, and the card fan shot is too cliche'.)
 

Jamie D. Grant

theory11 columnist
Oct 12, 2008
189
1
Vancouver
www.cardsinabottle.com
Here's the thing about symbols (eg. Ace of Spades) and photos...

They mean different things to different people. What's a spade to us is a symbol of death to someone else. And what we think might be a great photo might completely turn someone off.

So, unless you are 100%, absolutely, market-tested approved, certain~ leave symbols and pics off the card.

Now, just in case someone here gets my card...Yes, I have logos and the like on mine. But I've also invested hundreds (more like thousands) into having them professionally analyzed and designed. If you don't have that invested, just follow the advice and go with the straight info. At the end of the day, you want to offer them what's the least offensive and most easily read.

My best,

jamie
www.cardsinabottle.com

P.S. Lol, I hope people are getting my sign-off joke...
 

Jamie D. Grant

theory11 columnist
Oct 12, 2008
189
1
Vancouver
www.cardsinabottle.com
You have invested thousands of dollars into you business cards, but it dosent look like you have invested anything in your website. No offense.

If you dont mind can we have a look at your biz card?

This is mine,
View attachment 4034

J.

No offense taken! Which site are you referring to though?

http://www.jamiedgrant.com/ was designed by a local team here in Vancouver and has served me well enough. That said, the majority of my business comes from word-of-mouth...

www.cardsinabottle.com is something I just do myself, as it's important when selling art to not have it look too "slick". (That's my theory anyways, lol).

and,

www.Professional-Magician.com is simply my blog- where I can write up whatever I like.

Maybe I should give this some more thought, though. It's a professional trap to be honest- why fix something if it's working well for you, doesn't mean we shouldn't move froward. Thanks for the thought.

And with regards to my business card- I've spent thousands over the years due to the number of designs I've gone through before I settled on something I liked. That doesn't mean they weren't all effective and, like I said above, at the end of the day- the most basic often wins. My card now is my Ripley image:

Ripley_s_Believe_It_Or_Not.gif


with my number and website below it. Ironic, as after all the designs of cards previous, I end up using something that was provided for me. I am, however, extremely fortuneate to have such a great brand to associate with (Ripley's is still huge in Canada, as it's owner is from Vancouver).

All my best,

jamie
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Jamie D. Grant

theory11 columnist
Oct 12, 2008
189
1
Vancouver
www.cardsinabottle.com
Ah, the bottle site. That's done somewhat intentionally actually... But that's for a later psychology discussion, lol.

Also, "kids" is spelled incorrectly on your card. It should be "kid's" since it has "your" before it. It also reads as the kid is having a private event, fundraiser, or wedding (unlikely?) If I may, can I suggest:

"Available for kids' birthday parties, private events, fundraisers, and weddings."

Hope that helps!

~jamie
 
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