Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Make That Business Card Work for You

We all have them. Business cards I mean. We probably spent a combined time, across all of our efforts creating them, that would have equaled the time to write an epic tome.

You know what I mean. Which layout design? What picture? Font style and size? Oh, and the info to include in those few lines provided?

I have had lots of cards over the years. I don't like or use a single one of them now. What looked great in the creation---not so much once I got them and began to hand them around. In fairness to myself, I am not a graphic designer, so while I'm a whiz at decorating rooms in my house, that skill apparently doesn't transfer to a business card size.

Or at least not my past business cards.

Now, I am very happy with the two cards I carry around and distribute for my two-180-degrees-apart novels. That is due, of course, to the great book covers my publishers provided. Clean white background, no junky whiz-bam decorations to distract the eye.

But the back! Ah, the back!

That is valuable real estate. I decided to give people a reason NOT to throw away my card or lose it in a drawer. I give content on the back. Content I hope they will find intriguing, or helpful, or just plain funny.

For Streetwalker, my erotic romance, I include advice from my protagonist, Carrie, as "Carrie's Top Ten Sex Tips". And what better to put on the back of Mission Impastable, my culinary mystery, than a recipe from the book, "Lasagna Roll-Ups"?

Now, I have to tell you, I did--briefly--consider including ways to poison people on the back of the Mission Impastable business card, but I feared the NSA would show up. I don't need that kind of trouble. A recipe? Safe.

What content is in your book that you could extend so people don't toss your business card? If you write historical fiction mysteries, maybe you could share little known facts about the era or a person. If you write medical mysteries, include some factoids about trafficking in body parts or ways to prevent the disease in your book. Perhaps, for a cozy craft mystery, you could include crochet instructions for a scarf. You get the idea.

You have specialized knowledge. Use it to extend the value of your 4¢ business card. You might make a sale worth many, many times that.

9 comments:

Lorna Collins - said...

We have our 'author' cards as well as cards for each of our books. in addition, we have brochures with all ten of our books. We leave the backs blank. Whenever we go to eat, we always leave one with the tip. On the back we write: Thank You. On several occasions, the cards have initiated conversations. We usually use the free VistaPrint ones that relate to our book theme.

Sharon Arthur Moore said...

Thanks for coming by, Lorna, and "adding value" to this post. You have an ability to move the conversation forward. I have gotten quite a few reactions for the info on the back.

Sandra Bremser said...

Great idea!!

Sharon Arthur Moore said...

Thanks, Sandy! And so simple, too! It costs soooo little extra to use the back of the card. Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

Beryl Reichenberg said...

Some good ideas; I can see I'll need to revise mine by printing on the back. I did produce a bookmark which lists all my books and on the back places locally where they can be purchased including ordering from Amazon and OTP. With so much promotional material going out, it's hard to find time to write my next book. Not that promotion isn't important. It is. I just enjoy creating a new children's story more fun. Beryl

Sharon Arthur Moore said...

Beryl, I agree the time it takes to promote does take away from the writing. And I resent that like probably every other author. By the same token, if nobody reads me--because they don't know I exist--I am doing myself a disfavor. I, too, had generic stuff on backs of cards, but something that causes them to hang onto the card is what I was going for. I get quite the reactions! Thanks for stopping by and adding to the conversation.

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Anonymous said...

Thank you for your good advice. When i will crate my own Business card i will definitely use them.

Thank you again

smarika awal said...

The advice in the post are really useful i am going to use it while i will
custom business cards. I hope i could make attractive business cards