Well, here you are, you little entrepreneur.Ã‚Â IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m pretty impressed with your drive — youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve got an idea, and youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re working on it a little every day.Ã‚Â Maybe youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re an outright merchant, just Ã¢â‚¬Å“doing it for the money,Ã¢â‚¬Â or maybe youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re one of those passion seekers who just feels the need to point your sails into the head winds, and rock across the waves to some distant shore.Ã‚Â Either way, youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re making something happen in the world. And, IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve got an idea that may end up helping you on a couple of fronts.Ã‚Â It concerns your business cards, and how you absolutely DO NOT want to use some fancy, expensive place to print them up.Ã‚Â You need business cards Ã¢â‚¬â€œ theyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re a lot more professional than trying to scribble your name onto a cocktail napkin when youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve got a prospect on the block.Ã‚Â And you should never under estimate the power of having your business card be in the right place at the right time Ã¢â‚¬â€œ it could be the difference between your next sale, and no sale.Ã‚Â Hell, it might even be the difference between your next repeat client who sends you a dozen referralsÃ¢â‚¬Â¦ and a really well-organized office, while you wait for potential clients to get back with you.
LetÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s review a few parts of the process:
1. You need to figure out what you want your cards to look like.Ã‚Â What kind of card says, Ã¢â‚¬Å“This is MY businessÃ¢â‚¬Â?Ã‚Â Is it a glossy card printed and cut from an 8 x 10?Ã‚Â Is it something on vellum paper, with a crisp, old school flavor to it?Ã‚Â Is it a little more down to earth, maybe printed on watercolor paper?Ã‚Â Is it funky, and printed on thick plastic?Ã‚Â Your card says an awful lot about youÃ¢â‚¬Â¦ put some thought into what makes your card different from everybody elseÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s.
2. Are you going to design it yourself, or are you going to farm it out? You can save some cash, and just use a freeware art program (like the Gimp) to put together a designÃ¢â‚¬Â¦ but it might not be the best.Ã‚Â Or you can hire someone (are you cool with a good designer?), and get it done professionallyÃ¢â‚¬Â¦ for a price.Ã‚Â ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s your choice, either way.
3. Where are you going to produce the actual cards?Ã‚Â You can go to an expensive print shop, aÃ‚Â discount printing place, a web site that lets you print (or prints and sends you) your cards, or you can use your own printer.Ã‚Â Obviously, the best option for ease and high quality is going to be a professional shop Ã¢â‚¬â€œ they do this for a living, after all.Ã‚Â And if youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve got a decent printer, and did the design yourself, your only outlay may be a few bucks for some high-quality paper (or plastic, if youÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re really funky).Ã‚Â But of course, thereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s always the middle ground Ã¢â‚¬â€œ you can get really sweet effects by designing it yourself, and then get it printed up glossy (and pretty cheap) at the photo kiosk in a drug store.Ã‚Â Sometimes thereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the pretty ghetto act of having to cut an 8 x 10 into a dozen business cards, but they still look good.