You’re just about ready to order your first batch of business cards, and, as a student or recent grad, you’re wondering what it should say.
Traditional business cards usually include name, title, contact information and the company logo. Since your current title may technically be “job-seeker” or you’re not working for a company that will provide you with cards, you’ll have to be a tad more creative.
Here’s how it’s done:
First things first: your name and email address. Leave the firstname.lastname@example.org address in junior high school where it belongs and graduate to a professional-sounding email address in the following format: YourName@email.com. Whether or not to include a phone number is up to you. You’ll be giving out your card at networking events and possibly at coffee shops, parties, or maybe even in the subway, so it may not be a good idea to give your digits out to complete strangers. Other option, create a free Google Voice number to use on your card.
An up-to-date LinkedIn profile puts you on the map, especially when job-hunting. Including a link to your LinkedIn is equivalent to handing someone your resume — along with recommendations from past colleagues. An active Twitter account that documents your interest and involvement in your desired industry should be included as well to show potential employers that you’re dedicated and active.
Aspiring photographer, graphic designer, writer, etc.? Be sure to include a link to your online portfolio or blog, too.
You can also add the name of the school you’re attending/graduated from and what kind of degree you’re working towards/have. It shows potential employers and new connections that you’re serious about your future and have already hit the ground running.
If you want to go the extra mile to show you’re tech-savvy, generate a QR code online that links to your website. If you don’t have a portfolio or blog to link to, create a simple website using a platform like Wix.com, a free website builder.
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As for the design, think of it as the company dress code: If your desired position is in a more conservative industry (for instance, publishing) and you’ll likely be wearing a suit to work daily, your business card should match that style. Include the basics on your card and use a classic white background with a black typeface.
We encourage you to get creative! Use color, photography, and a logo if you have one. We love business cards from MOO.com because they let you put up to 50 different images on the backs of your cards — which is ideal for designers and artists. They also let you buy in small batches, which is good if you’re just starting out.
Remember, your business card is an extension of you; it exists to help you stand out and be memorable. Spending a little extra time on it now will pay off in the future.
We’d love to see photos of your business cards. Share them or any of your suggestions in the comments!
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