Many magicians struggle designing their magicians business cards. There's a lot riding on the design decisions you make, after all, clients WILL judge you on the quality and style of the business card you hand them. Magicians business cards are one of the most effective forms of magicians advertising you can do. Here are a few tips to help you make magicians business cards that will communicate the right impression.
Do you need magicians business cards?
Magic is a social activity. If you perform close up magic, you get to interact with your audience up close. Most professional magicians get the majority of their work through recommendation and referrals. Each performance is an advert for your services as any of your spectators could be planning their own event. Whenever you perform, it's essential to have your contact details instantly available to possible future clients.
Difference between design and function
Your business card is not a status symbol or a tool to promote your ego and show off to other magicians. Anyone can make them, they are no reflection on your abilities as a magician. The function of the card is much more important than how elaborate it looks.
Creating good magicians business cards requires a compromise between design and function. Graphic designers are often terrible at marketing and marketers don't tend to make good graphic designers. The skill sets and 'outlook' required for both pull in opposite directions. That's why Amazons website looks ugly, but converts browsers into buyers perfectly. The secret is to balance the design, with the function it needs to provide. Magicians business cards must do three things:
- Look professional.
- Communicate your services.
- Provide a point of contact.
Anything more than those three functions may be a distraction, limit your market or reduce the effectiveness of your marketing.
What's your market?
The first step is to examine the market that your magicians business cards will target.
If you perform close-up magic tricks, but also work as a children's entertainer, it's better to have distinctively different magicians business cards for each style of magic you perform or clients you work for. Create different designs for your close-up magic, your kids show or mentalism show etc.
For each of the 'act styles' you offer, take a while to think about the types of people that book you for each event. Consider the following questions:
- Are they companies or individuals?
- Is your style formal or casual?
- What's their budget?
- Are they local, national or international?
If you tend to market to companies, you may want a more corporate style of magicians business cards. Your card may be scanned or added to an index, so the size and layout of the card needs to make this easy. If you mainly do children's parties, your cards will be given to parents who may stick them to their fridge or add them to a pile of papers in the house, so a more unusual size and shape may help your card get noticed again.
You don't need to have just one style of business card. Have unique cards for different clients, locations and styles of magic. Use the strapline under your name to segment the audience each card is directed towards.
Don't annoy people : Use the 3 x 2 inch standard
Close up performers hand out their magicians business cards during walk-around magic and at the tables whilst performing. The business card should be small enough that a spectator can easily put the card in their pocket or fit it into the card holding slots in their wallet or purse. Using an oversize card runs the risk of the card being folded up or crumpled when it's pushed into their pocket. A standard size business card is much more likely to be kept and added to a client's contact file.
Designing business cards that are deliberately hard to file, too big for a wallet or that don't stack easily is almost a kind of spam. It's obvious to most clients that you have done that on purpose.They get a lot of business cards that use all sorts of desperate marketing tricks. Don't be 'one of those guys'.
When clients receive your card, make it as easy as possible for them to keep and store it. Anything you do that makes storing the business card hard, or that will annoy the client, works against you.
If you are worried that your card may be forgotten if you make it easy for spectators to store it, give them a reason to get it back out. Use the business card to make a prediction, write something magical on the card before you give it to them.
Find ways to make the client want to take your card out and show it off because you are a great magician, not because you know a great printer.
Don't make the card too busy
You don't need to add a list of all your services to the business card. Too much text looks busy and confusing. Keep the information to a bare minimum of the following:
- Your name
- A short strapline explaining what you do
- Your telephone number
- Your website address
Over designed magicians business cards can make you look desperate, or that you are trying too hard.
Great looking magicians business cards could also just have your name and website on it. The goal is for the client to contact you easily and find out more information at that point. Magicians business cards are not full adverts for your services, they are simply a gateway to contact you.
Don't include a photo
Unless you are stunningly attractive and that is one of your unique selling points, there is no need to include a photo of yourself on your card. Use a well designed logo instead. Clients will contact you or look in more detail at your website if they want to check out your appearance. Clients will contact you if they have already seen you perform, or if you have been highly recommended. If your reputation has preceded you and someone has your card without having ever met you, lead them to want to visit your website to 'check you out'. You can present clients with photo's including action shots once they are on your website. There is no need to have clients assess you from a single small headshot photo. Use your magicians business cards as a gateway to get more information, not as a sales pitch.
Use high quality card stock
There's nothing worst than being handed a cheap magicians business card. A black and white, floppy card that looks like it's been made by one of those machines at the supermarket entrance. Designing the card yourself is fine, but make sure a good print company makes them for you. The card should look expensive and ideally have the front laminated, so it doesn't feel like a piece of paper you have cut up into cards.
Space to write on the back
The back of your magicians business cards is a great place to add some quotes from previous clients. However, many performers also like to leave it blank so they can write on the card and build it into some of their magic tricks. Writing a prediction on the back of your card, is a great way to leave your card with a spectator. If your business cards have a black back or you have covered the back with text, you will miss out on this useful feature.
Avoid stock images
The public already has some terrible misconceptions about magic, especially the older style of stage magic. Don't add to this by using stock images of top hats, rabbits and fans of playing cards. It looks cheap, thoughtless and doesn't represent the service you provide.
Print lots of cards and hand them out
Never feel embarrassed to give out your business card. They are one of the most effective forms of magicians advertising. People either want them or don't. If they want them, great, you gave them your card. If they don't want your card, they will take it anyway as it's polite and it also shows that you respect them and seek further contact. People who don't want your card, were not going to book you anyway, so nothing is lost.
It's better for a spectator to have your card and not need it, than need it and not have it:
- Give out your card when you perform close up magic.
- Add some to the table when you table-hop.
- Leave some in the bar area and the reception when you visit a venue.
- Make sure the event planner and restaurant manager get a card.
- If you pay a bill, add your card, you never know who will open it at the payment center. They may be planning a party or wedding and will look you up.
- Pin your card to services boards locally, it' doesn't matter that it's not targeted advertising, you want it available, just in case someone walks past, who is planning an event.
Try to get through as many business cards as you can, each one is a gateway for someone to discover you and find out more.
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