No matter what we do in life, we are being judged. Whether it’s the way we dress, our body language, our mannerisms or even the car we drive, it’s human nature to make snap decisions based on what we see. This is true both personally and professionally. So, if two people show up for a job interview and one is in a sweat suit and one is in a business suit, which one will most likely be taken seriously? The same goes for handing out business cards printed at home on perforated stock versus those professionally designed and printed. It really does make a difference in how you and your business are viewed!
You may be thinking, “I’ll do it myself and save money.” That’s not necessarily true. We all have our strengths and spending time on designing business material may not be the best use of it if that’s not your profession. Ask yourself where your time is best spent. If your answer is “focusing on my business”, then hiring a professional Graphic Designer/Printer makes sense. Plus, we designers also know how to properly prepare files for print, have access to wholesale printers and have lots of samples of paper stocks, coatings and unique products. In the long run, hiring a professional Graphic Designer really can save you time and money and free you up to do what you do best.
Imagine you’re driving down the road and you see a fast food restaurant with purple arches. Is it or isn’t it? McDonald’s capitalizes on the Golden Arches and if the color or logo changes, customers may not associate the change with the restaurant. Branding your logo and consistent colors on every piece of your business material is important! For that reason, when you see my Avatar, you’ll know it’s me. I designed that Avatar to look like me, down to the pink glasses! A professional Graphic Designer will make sure that your brand is recognizable, noticeable, professional and consistent.
When you hand out your business materials, it’s important that you are handing out quality products. When you have given careful thought to the impression you want to cultivate, be sure that the appearance of your business materials reflects that impression. Design, card stock weight, finishes and coatings all play a part in how you will be received (and perceived) by others. If you’re handing out products that you’re not proud of, it’s time to rethink your image. A professional Graphic Designer will give you an unbiased view of your current collateral material, make suggestions that will help you achieve the image you want to portray and collaborate with you to create a true reflection you can’t wait to present to your business partners!
I carry four samples of business cards with me. They are identically designed and therein lies the problem. These samples happen to belong to four different businesses. Each of these companies used the same printer they saw online and chose identical designs from their stock graphics. Instead of creating their own brand, they shared a brand with several other companies. Professional Graphic Designers never repeat designs so your company will always be uniquely branded. This means when you hand out your business cards or other collateral material, you can be sure you are making a statement about your individuality. People will remember that.
Recently, a company left a business card on my door, presumably to get me to use their services. Out of the 13 words on their card that weren’t the company name or contact information, 3 of them were misspelled. While some people aren’t bothered by that, I am. If I’m going to use a company, everything about them is important. The way I see it, if they don’t care enough about their own presentation, what kind of job are they going to do for me? A Graphic Design professional pays attention to details that go well beyond the layout. It also considers the content. These little details are crucial in how your customers (or potential customers) perceive you.