Every day we see new designers pushing the creative limits for business cards. With literally thousands of artistic, stylish, innovative, and just plain strange business cards floating around, it’s becoming harder and harder to make yourself and your brand stand out from the crowd.
Instead of waiting for that lightning bolt of sheer creativity to hit you all at once with the perfect idea for an awesome business card, try thinking about adding some functionality to it instead. In other words, add something a little extra to the cards, so they serve some other purpose beyond just sharing your contact information. Multipurpose business cards reinforce branding, leave a long-lasting impression, and serve a purpose that will click with your clients, customers, and potential new leads.
For your inspiration, we’ve compiled a list of 5 multipurpose business cards that can be used as a powerful marketing tool to attract better brand awareness.
Bombay Bakery wanted to promote their catering services with a very small budget. They settled on designing their own version of the business card that coincided perfectly with their industry. The Bakery’s edible business cards were made into different cookie flavors and then placed in the cafes they supplied to.
Custom molds were made for consistency and the business cards were baked fresh every two weeks. They ended up working very well in terms of recall and a lot of people ended up asking for samples of the edible business card along with their usual orders. What’s really great about this design is how creates an unexpected interaction with the customer.
These multipurpose cards combine the functionality of a USB drive with the traditional style and shape of a business card. Rather than just listing your web address and other contact information on the card, you can upload all of your relevant marketing materials straight to the included thumb drive.
For example, if you can upload your entire product catalog and service brochure, in addition to attaching PowerPoint presentations, video commercials and other relevant media to these usb cards. Once clients are done browsing through the info, they’ll enjoy a free USB drive that they can then use for their own personal storage use as well.
These multipurpose business cards fit in your wallet and allow you to adjust the nuts and bolts of your bicycle. Designed by Rethink for the bicycle repair shop, Broke Bike Alley, these thick metal cards are made with various common bike tools molded into them.
The idea adds functionality relevant to the needs of Broke Bike Alley’s target market, while promoting their own services to a broader audience. Overall, it’s just plain cool to be able to take out a card from your wallet to fix your bike, and I’m sure it’s something passersby will be sure to notice while in use.
These business cards are simple, practical, and perfectly suited for nail technicians to give their clients in spas, salons, and health services. You could see this one in particular as either a nail file that doubles as a business card, or a business card that doubles as a nail file.
But the point is that they’re offering a practical purpose for their business cards in addition to marketing their company. Keep in mind that for business cards that will wear and tear like these, you need to make sure that your supplier embeds your logo and contact info in such a way that it will never come off.
Quick response (QR) codes are two dimensional bar codes that can be scanned and read with certain apps on a smartphone or tablet computer. The app uses the camera on your mobile device to read the code and transfer the information embedded in it. Usually this is either a coupon, contact information, or a link to a website landing page.
Printing these on your business cards is a great way to direct your clients to any digital information you have available for them. Since the technology is still so new, this offers exclusivity to the clients with mobile smartphones or tablets, and you can take advantage of that by offering specific rewards or discounts to them through your QR code.
Hopefully these examples will help you rethink your business card design strategy to include some form of functionality to your clients. In other words, offer some other benefit or reward to them for taking your business card. The result will better brand awareness and fun ways to market your business offline and online to the general public.