Designing a business card

With the majority of initial interactions between businesses occurring online, some might question the value of business cards and how important it is to have them at all. Technological solutions are slowly replacing traditional paper and board and yet, business cards still seem to have an important role to play, especially at events, where following verbal interest in your products or services, a card is still the popular choice for keeping in contact.

If your potential customer is intent on reaching out to you then it doesn't really matter if your card is premium or not. Good use of typography and layout will help the relevant details to be easily read. However, if your potential customer is undecided on yours or another company, then small details and quality can help create a lasting impression even after the memory of the initial meeting fades. Our philosophy on business cards is this: if you apply good format and type, a simple card will often suffice, but if you have a business that is premium or specialist then matching your quality and design is worth the effort. Here we have selected some essential points worth thinking about in order to create a memorable and effective business card.

Size and shape

The typical size of a business card is 85 x 55 mm (3.35 × 2.17 inches). Using this standard size means it will be identifiable as a business card, fit in any wallets or card holders and is tried and tested for good layouts. On the other hand, you can stand out by opting for customised sizes or shapes with die cutting, although as with all customisation this will increase costs. Negative space within a card can help to create a clever and unique design - made more or less useful depending on your content, or if you decide not to go beyond a traditional look, simply round the corners for a less formal aesthetic.


Orientation is worth considering too – in some cases you might benefit from a vertical card - this often depends on the nature of your business and the amount and type of information you want to present - long names, email and web addresses will work much better on a landscape card. For example if any of these elements are longer than 20 characters, it might be difficult to place them on a vertical business card without making the font size significantly smaller than the standard 7-8 pt.

Material and texture

While paper/board is the most popular material to print a business card on, you may choose something less conventional, for instance laser engraving on wood, steel, or plastic/acrylic. These materials can differentiate your card from those of your competitors and increase the card’s durability and the chances that your potential client will decide to keep it. 

Even if your card is printed on paper, you might want to think about how it feels in your hand. It can be smooth or rough, matte or glossy, ribbed or flat. The thickness of the card is important too - thinner versions might be suitable if you have a need to print a large number of cards to distribute at an event and have no choice but to stay within a set budget, whereas during an important meeting you will probably choose to present a better quality card.


Letterpress cards with logos and patterns can serve both aesthetic and informative purposes - special effects like foil blocking work very well for certain industries but add a lot of cost. Although high quality letterpress business cards will be more costly than their simpler counterparts, you might find this to be a worthy investment as they will undoubtedly produce a good impression on your clients. 

We recommend this company for very cost effective and high quality letterpress printing:

Profession matters

A business card can serve as a vivid reminder of what you do without a word about your services – make use of shapes, textures and visual elements that relate to your profession or industry to create a memorable and clever representation of your company. You can use virtually any object associated with your business as long as it is relevant and serves your purpose of improving a client’s first impression of what you do.


When you aim to create professional looking business cards, the choice of colours plays a great role. Whereas the particular colours you use will often be dictated by your existing brand guidelines (unless you are creating a new brand), always make sure that colour combinations on the card work together. Whether you prefer a riot of colour or a minimalistic black and white design, stay in the colour scheme that prevails throughout your website, logo, catalogues, etc. Cohesive brand elements maintain a reliable image of your company. 


Information to include

The list of contact details to be put on the back of a business card generally includes a company and contact person’s name, phone number, e-mail and work address, but you are free to add as many details as required depending on what information is considered to be the most significant. If your social media accounts can be of use to your clients, it is worth mentioning them as well.

With all kinds of stationery, the best design solution will always depend on a number of factors, such as the type of products or services you offer, your goals, business values, USPs, background and more. However, you can always resort to a simple yet professional design for a quick solution - check out these free editable business card mockups we have created for you to test out your details. To use them simply download and open using Adobe Acrobat or a similar modern pdf reader, then you can click on the text to type in your details. Any questions please email us.

EAST Germany’s Most Famous Graphic Designer

In 1951 Klaus Wittkugel was head designer for the German Democratic Republic’s Office of Information, his famous Five Year Plan poster highlighted the GDR’s Soviet-style economic goals ahead of an exhibition it advertised. After the event ended—a local newspaper of note ran a piece condemning Wittkugel’s work: “An abstract, intellectual play with numbers and format takes precedence over depictions of people and clear symbols… This ever-dominant formalist approach to visual communication continues to find its expression in other experiments that show a hatred of mankind.”

Over the years, Wittkugel designed some of the most recognisable work from the Soviet era. But after his censure at the hands of the 'hatred of mankind' label, Wittkugel’s work began to embrace the human form over his more typical Modernist use of typography. One famous poster shows a young coal miner emerging from the darkness, his face covered in soot, the words “Ich bin Bergmann! Wer ist mehr? (Translation: “I am a miner! Who is better?”) written below him as a call to action. 

On the whole, Wittkugel’s designs were more playful than you might guess for someone who worked for Stalinist East Germany.


Using Cinemagraphs in content marketing

Cinemagraphs are still photographs in which a minor and repeated movement occurs. Published in either animated GIF format or as video, they give the illusion that the viewer is watching a video. However, as many stunning cinemagraphs across the internet show, the creativity in how those single elements are chosen and exploited is what makes them so interesting and watchable.



Produced by taking a series of photographs or a video recording, and, using image editing software, compositing the photographs or the video frames into a seamless loop of sequential frames such that motion in part of the subject between exposures (for example, a person's dangling leg) is perceived as a repeating or continued motion, in contrast with the stillness of the rest of the image.

The term "cinemagraph" was coined by U.S. photographers Kevin Burg and Jamie Beck, who used the technique to animate their fashion and news photographs beginning in early 2011.

In December 2014, the United States Trademark and Patents Office awarded the trademark for the term "cinemagraph" to Flixel Photos, Inc., a Canadian software manufacturer.

So why and how can they be used in content marketing? In 2015 Instagram /Facebook introduced new video formats for their respective platforms. Of course Facebook has for a long time been able to post videos, but the new addition was 7 second profile videos and with Instagram, 15 second post videos. Cinemagraphs are effective in these kind of social media spots because of the looping nature of the static post or profile picture. To play a video can look great, but hair blowing in the wind on a profile picture made as a cinemagraph arguably does more to impress.

Whatever your business or niche, a cinemagraph can add a bit of cool to your social channels, by picking out the specific element that will catch the eye and surprise, mesmerise or interest your viewers. There is also something quite satisfactorily artistic and personal about the way they are made.

Some great examples can be seen here: