Visiting cards first appeared around the 15th century in China and were used as a means for aristocrats to announce their arrival to whomever they were visiting. This tradition then moved on to nobles in France and England and the business card was born!
Things to consider if you are on the market for new business cards:
Materials and Effects – Most are printed on card stock, but you may want to consider a coating, a embellishment, embossing, or specialized material (eg wood)
Size and Shape – Be creative! They can be any size and not just rectangle, think round edges, cut out shapes…
Printing Methods – Digital is the most popular, Letterpress will give you better quality and Engraved will give you another option.
Colour & Style - There are unlimited options with some imagination. Four colour process is standard and recommended. Try and keep a similar look to your website and let the card reflect what it is you actually do.
But if you are opposed to business cards you may like to try out some new alternatives.
LinkedIn has the CardMunch app that digitizes an analog card. It captures the image of a business card, recognizes it and then saves it on your phone as a contact. It also integrates that person’s information from his or her profile on LinkedIn.
You can also create a digital card using Cardcloud that can be delivered by email.
But one important tip – Try to learn the basics of foreign customs regarding presenting yourself and the exchange of business cards before your next overseas work trip, otherwise it could be over before you have even started your meeting!