I received a couple of fun things in the mail today. I’m happy, because I ordered a batch of business cards from Moo, and they arrived this afternoon (even though the expected arrival date was August 8). I also received a surprise gift card from T-Mobile, which means I will probably buy a car charger either tomorrow or when I come back from New Hampshire. (The quality of my pics isn’t great, because I’m still learning the ins and outs of taking good pictures on my phone.)
I pay for my business cards, and I’m happy to do it. I know that Vistaprint offers free business cards. I could get 250 free cards instead of paying around $15 for 100. Vistaprint offers all sorts of templates and colored inks and features. However, the impression I’ve gotten from the cards of many of the creative types I know who have used Vistaprint is that the bells and whistles Vistaprint offers make for cluttered, unprofessional cards. I worked for a company that used Vistaprint, and the company-offered cards were on cheap paper with a fuzzy logo. Vistaprint’s free cards also have the Vistaprint web address on the back; the free advertising on the company’s part is what really pays for the business cards. There are also a lot of extras and services that are a good idea to take advantage of but once added up could bring the tally for the 250 cards up past $20 (like card editing, better quality paper, carrying a front design to the back of the card).
It’s not that I don’t appreciate the importance of having access to free business cards. It’s a great idea for college students, people who are just starting businesses, and people who don’t think they can afford to order cards to take advantage of the service. But, I’ve had some great reactions to my Moo cards over the years. They always come out simple yet elegant.
I like Moo because they offer mini cards, which are half the size of standard cards. This has proven to be memorable. I also like that they offer back-of-card designs by independent artists. If I have a book published, I will be able to upload my own pictures (or if I have designs commissioned by an artist friend), but for now I have been very pleased with the results from using their offered designs. Even better, anyone who orders can mix and match designs from different artists in their gallery.
When I network, I want to be remembered in a certain way. I’m building a brand. Everyone who has received my card has given me positive feedback, because these cards are fun and fashionable. They reflect my personality. And, they’re printed on high quality, glossy paper. I see the $15 as an investment, and I’m happy that it goes towards supporting a growing business in an iffy world economy. Even better, I always feel like the company is looking out for me when I order from them. They have always exceeded my expectations when it comes to quality and the speed with which I receive my order. That means a lot when so much of business (especially online business) has become impersonal.