Tired of the same old business cards and want something really unique? Looking for a way to stand out without breaking the bank? We have 9 suggestions.

1. SPOT UV. UV is a coating usually applied to one or both sides of printed cover stock giving business cards a slick, glossy feel. You can have this applied over an isolated area of your business card, such as a logo or text, and the coating can be applied over color. It is especially impressive over a black background giving a subtle elevated appearance. The price of these depend on the complexity of the design and will require additional prepress work by your printer which will result in longer production times.

2. FOLDED BUSINESS CARDS. Do you have a ton of information or want to include an appointment reminder or map to your business? A folded business card gives you twice the space and is surprisingly affordable. Cost depends on whether you provide print ready art or not, but a good rule of thumb is that these are going to cost about double regular cards. Be sure to ask your printer to score them so the fold is neat and clean. The good news is that these can be produced in about the same time as standard business cards.

3. PLASTIC CARDS. White plastic, frosted or clear business cards with rounded corners are an attention-getting alternative to paper cards. With thickness of 20 mil, these are more substantial and may be printed on one side in full color. Expect to pay considerably more than standard cards, depending on artwork requirements and quantity. Production time will be longer than standard business cards, so be patient. Clear plastic business cards are ideal for glass shops and windshield repair companies.

4. METAL CARDS. Although pricey (expect to pay $2 to $5 each), metal cards have a wow factor you won’t find elsewhere. You won’t be handing these out like candy at your next networking event and the minimums are low because they are so costly. From flat aluminum cards with one color ink to specialty laser cut cards on steel, these are some of the most impressive business cards available. Production time can easily take weeks.

5. FOIL CARDS. Like spot UV, foil can be applied to a logo or text to give your business cards greater dimension. The cost of these depends on the number of foil colors used, whether the foil is spot covered in UV coating, stamped, etc. Starting cost for minimal foil is about double the cost of a standard business card and can get fairly pricey depending on the prepress artwork requirements.You can save yourself some money by having your printer create “shells” of your cards, and then printing the information that is likely to change. Expect a longer production time for these.

6. MAGNETIC BUSINESS CARDS. If you’re in an industry providing services to the public such as plumbing, pet grooming, home repair, etc. a magnetic business card is a great way to keep your contact information close at hand. Magnetic business cards are a great alternative to door hangers.

7. BLACK-EDGED, SUPER THICK CARDS. Ultra thick business cards are printed on white stock with a black core which is visible along the edges. These cards have a sleek and modern appearance, but can get pricey fairly quickly.

8. LAMINATED BUSINESS CARDS. Standard business cards covered with a high gloss, satin, suede or a silky laminate create a lasting impression.

9. SQUARE CUT SOCIAL CARDS. The hottest trend in business cards are square cut social cards, 2.5” x 2.5”. If you do decide to do these, you must make them special, otherwise, their unusual size means people are more apt to throw them away because they are not uniform with other business cards.


© 2016 Shelly Fagan
Twitter: @FaganWrites

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