Creating a Business Card for Freelancers: What Freelancers should look for in their Calling Cards

Business cards are the ultimate signature for any person who works. Here is how freelancers, in particular, can create that unique business card to market themselves.

Designing a business card for a freelancer can be exciting and hard work. It certainly requires a lot of imaginative thought and creative development in order for the freelancer and his or her services to be effectively marketed towards clients. This is different from corporations that have an established brand and logo, as freelancers, especially new ones, have to create the awareness and presence of their services first.

The Freelancer’s Name

The freelancer’s name is essentially the brand name of his or her ‘company,’ which represents him or her. Some freelancers may not choose to do this and set up their own enterprise. But generally, playing upon the freelancer’s name will help get this person out in the market. The name can be turned into a logo or emblem and his or her services can be derived from hir or her name itself. Thus, it is important to have his or her name printed clearly on the business card.

The Colour Scheme

Generally this is a personal choice and the main reason for freelancers choosing their line of career is to be able to express what is uniquely theirs. Freelancers are not bonded with corporations that dictate corporate colours or faux-pas and are therefore free to choose their colour schemes, which may possibly represent their own favourite colours. Of course, some colours look more professional than others, while some may paint the wrong picture of the service.

For example, baby pink and quirky purple may not go down well with a freelance financial auditor but would define a female fashion designer’s service. Similarly, blue and black may suit a general business writer but not a graphic designer’s portfolio. So, it up to the business card designer to gently guide the freelancer towards colours that would represent his or her industry accurately.

The Design Itself

Freelancers need to stand out of the crowd and there is a good thing that there are so many possible designs in the market that will allow them to do that.

Firstly, at best, do not clutter the card with too many graphics or too many fonts. This can be confusing and have an adverse effect on the client. Also, make full use of double-sided cards to reduce the clutter on the card.

Secondly, try to send an interesting message across to the clients. The card can be designed as a ‘teaser,’ enticing clients to contact the freelancer in the future.

Thirdly, design the card horizontally, not vertically, as clients often keep business cards in a horizontal box and flip through them the same way. They will often miss names that are printed vertically across the narrow-top of the card rather than printed broadly across.

The printing material is also important here, but that largely depends on the freelancer’s budget, as many are starting out as new players in the market. However, the better the overall presentation of the card, the higher the chance the card will not be tossed into the dustbin.

Content on the Card

Generally, the freelancer’s name, description (of service) and contact details would be sufficient to make up the content of the card. These three items need to be printed in clear font and in the right colours on the card.

However, freelancers may be anxious to make the best impressions through their calling card, thus, may want to squeeze in as much information as possible on the card. Though this is informative, the card will look cluttered and possibly tacky and desperate for attention.

Try the minimalist approach: providing the potential client with a glimpse of the available services offered by this person. It is possible to make a short and simple list on the back of the card. But if he or she is adamant on including a long list of services and their details, suggest a small marketing brochure to complement the card.

Lastly, do a spell-check before the final print and ask the freelancer for the final approval. Embarrassing spelling errors will just be detrimental to the future of his or her career.

Signing Off

Business cards can be left everywhere, with anyone and is the ultimate signature of the freelancer’s services. It has to look unique, fresh and professional to garner keen interest in the market. Therefore, it is important to look at the details of the card from the freelancer’s name to the overall message and presentation of the card for best results.