Personal Brand Review: Business Card

I’m currently in the midst of reviewing and updating my personal brand.

Professionally speaking, the most important part of anyone’s personal brand is their CV or resumé. I’m in the process of tweaking mine, working first on some design tweaks and then trying to improve some messaging.

There is something else I consider essential in my personal branding: my business card. I like to bring business cards to conferences and other events where there are opportunities to network and meet people.

I think of a business card can be important as part of marketing yourself. I’ve designed and redesigned mine many times over the years.

My new 2023 redesign is completed and sent off to the printer.

Business card design

I’d like to share what I did for my latest biz card. First, here’s the back of the card, showing my logo (another of my personal branding elements) against a dark background.

Business card 2023, back
Biz card back face, 2023 redesign

There no change to the design, except I reworded the tagline under my name to better reflect who I am, and what I do.

The front of the card was a different story, with several updates implemented. As a starting point, here is the previous version.

Business card 2020, front

This was created in 2020, but I never had this printed, since the pandemic meant no opportunity to meet people in person.

To be honest, I didn’t really like this design all that much. There were two different taglines describing myself: “Product Marketing” and “Marketing Content Creation.” Not great.

So here’s what I did for the 2023 redesign.

Business card 2023, front

I decided to duplicate my logo from the back of the card, with the new and improved tagline. Then I shortened the list of capabilities to make it concise yet broadly encompassing.

The interesting aspect of this new card design is the QR code that takes you to my website. I’ve been thinking of having a QR code somewhere in my branding, so I’ve decided to put it here. We’ll see how it works over time.

It’s not immediately obvious, but the card image actually shows a little extra margin around the actual boundaries of the card. This is bleed that the printer requires to help define where to make cuts in the paper.

(This image is straight from the Adobe InDesign artwork to the printer’s exact specifications.)

Here is the card image showing the margin. The box defines the borders of the business card when printed.

Business card 2023, front, with box

Design considerations for Japan

I’ve always had this casual ambition of one day doing something with business partners or clientele in Japan. And for that, a business card would be absolutely essential.

So I updated the card design with this in consideration.

Business card 2023 with Japan considerations

In Japan, you present your business card by holding it at the upper corners with your thumbs and index fingers, so the person can clearly see your card right-side up before politely taking it from your hands.

Your card’s design should allow you to grab the upper corners without obscuring the content.

The rectangle box is space reserved for a future Japanese translation of my name, tagline, and capabilities.

Sharing to inspire others

As I previously stated, I’m not sharing my branding efforts to show off my accomplishments, but rather, as hopefully a little inspiration for you to think about ways to brand yourself.