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Why Business Cards Are Useful To Musicians

Why should musicians use business cards?

Business cards, we all had them. Some people swear by them, others say “neh” and call it quits. Whatever you are, I’m sure someone has handed you one at some point. And you probably thought, “what the hell am I going to do with this?” Or maybe you were like “sweet dude, I’ll call you right away.” Either way, it probably got you thinking. You might have thought, “wow, this man really comes prepared.” I seriously doubt you thought, “Hey, look, this guy, what a dinosaur, still uses business cards.”

In this article, we’ll look at some of the things that can help you stand out from the crowd of musicians with business cards, and why musician business cards are still useful today.

Tactibility

Okay, it’s interesting that we’re still talking about them in 2018. I mean, we need hoverboards, flying cars, self-tying shoes, and time travel is a thing of the past. Sorry Marty, we’re not there yet.

As the world becomes increasingly digital with things like SoundCloud, Spotify, and Facebook, business cards for musicians can seem a bit old-fashioned. But really? Well, we’re human, so it’s natural to like human touch. Giving something tangible to another person has a much bigger impact than a ‘like’ or ‘follow’ on social media. In 2016, sales of paper-based books increased by 7%, while e-books decreased by 4%. Coloring books for adults played a big role in this, and children preferred paper books to Kindle or iPad. What does this suggest? I think that’s clear. We don’t like everything in our lives to be digital. We love things with texture that we can hold in our hands. Digital can be a little too sterile at times.

It forces you to network

When you learn the knowledge of something for yourself, you take responsibility for it. Similarly, if we spend money on something, we are more inclined to use it. A Facebook page or a Twitter account costs nothing. This makes it much easier to follow the old saying “oh tomorrow, tomorrow”. It doesn’t feel great to spend money on that New Year’s resolution piece of exercise equipment only to have it sit and collect dust. But what happens when you actually use it and start seeing results. You probably feel like a million bucks. Well, if you’ve spent money on some business cards, I’ll bet you anything you’ll feel really good about when you start using them and meeting people. In the meantime, get in the right mindset to kick your ass and get to those networking events or muster up the courage to talk to the person who can make a difference.

What should be put on them?

The default setting should be quality paper (stock = paper type). A nice 16 pt paper or 38 pt tri-ply paper works beautifully. Avoid simple, detailed patterns or images. Make sure your business card includes:

  • Your name
  • services provided
  • Phone number
  • SoundCloud, Spotify, Facebook or YouTube
  • E-mail
  • The URL of the website

Don’t overwhelm people with every single social media account you have. List the ones you use most often and which show the best example you.

Be creative

Your card reflects your artistic ability to some extent. So it should speak for you. Are you a simple and boring person? Then the business card should be simple and boring. Are you a simple but modern person? Then that’s what your business card should be about. Try things like colorful backgrounds or follow trends in modern artwork and try to incorporate that into your design. It doesn’t have to stop here either. Why not some funny quotes or descriptions of your services? Don’t just settle for ‘guitarist’ or my favorite ‘pianist’. Write the line about who you are. Just don’t overdo it.

Finally

Business cards are not the end. Once you have these, you won’t just start booking high-profile gigs and you’ll get more work (maybe you will). It’s simply a way to present your information nicely so that potential customers can be interested in what you have to offer. Then this can lead them to your website or demo discs. A good-looking business card is only the first step, the rest is up to you…

that’s what I’m asking you

How many musicians still use business cards? What do you think about them as we move more and more towards digitalization? Do people really care about tangibility? For my fellow networking musicians, if there was a website to help musicians overcome the frustration of designing business cards and other paper based promotions, would you use it?

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