Is that a business card???

On one of the mailing lists I subscribe to there was an interesting discussion on what to put on your business card. While having a look at mine (which definitely needs some improvement, lus a website to refer people to), I jotted down a few tips.

What to include

– I would start by a white/light-coloured background. There are now quie a few apps available that can scan business cards and some of them struggle if your background is very colorful

First and last name

Website (I know I am still in the process of setting it a proper one, but if you know your problem, you are half-way through towards its solution, or this is what they say)

Twitter and email accounts

Phone and fax number. You can easily create an online fax number with PamFax and then you only need a scanner to be able to send faxes

– Your language combinations!!! Do not forget them, otherwise you might get weird requests

What NOT to include

– A link to your Proz profile, which leads your potential customer to a site full of competitors… and we all know that they will find someone cheaper than you!

– Your VAT account, if you have one. In Italy every freelancer has one, but I do not see it as a valuable piece of information to put on a card. Once you start doing business together then you can let your clients know

– Your address?!? I am still not sure about this, as some people prefer to put something general like ‘Milan area’, whereas others do state their full address to show that they have an office and they are a real business. Input needed here, definitely! What would you say?

Do you have any more nuggets of business-cardy wisdom you wish to share? Please do! 🙂


About Chiara Vecchi

A blogging translator working from English and German into Italian. You are more than welcome to visit my blog!
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8 Responses to Is that a business card???

  1. Maria says:

    As for the address, I only state my city on the business card. I used to have the full address, but then I moved and moved and my business cards were outdated, so I thought the city would be enough, as I am not planning to leave the city!
    Regarding language combination, that is a tough one. I am a conference interpreter with five passive and two retour languages, plus mother tongue of course. That is very difficult to put on a small business card. So I went for the abbreviatioins EN-DE-FR-SV-SK, but I am not too happy with it, as some people might not be familiar with SV as Swedish or SK as Slovak. And it is not clear which is my retour language. I am currently considering a redesign, so your post comes in handy! Thank you. Maria

    • Hi Maria, thanks for coming back! I think your case is very special, as you work with several languages (well done!)! One solution might be to be more specific at the back of the card if you don’t want to leave it blank. Also, I agree with you with writing your city, it is more cost effective in the end! 🙂

  2. Pingback: Is that a business card??? | LinguaGreca |

  3. Meg says:

    Interesting points on business cards! I don’t have my address or even mention of the city, because we work internationally. But I suppose that interpreters could benefit from mentioning their location, don’t you think?

    • Hi Meg! I think you made a good point. Intepreters need to be on-site, so it would be useful for their clients to know where they are. I think that freelancers who do not have to be on-site have more room for choosing. Thanks for your input!

  4. Cassy says:

    Excellent point on what to put on my business card. I admit, there are a lot of addition to be made on my business card.

  5. Pingback: Weekly favorites (June 18-24) | Adventures in Freelance Translation

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