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Interesting Facts on the Evolution of Business Cards

INTERESTING FACTS >-> ON THE EVOLUTION OF BUSINESS CARDS Business cards are probably the most popular tool for self and business promotion. Even before, people used business cards in various ways to creatively represent themselves or their business. As centuries passed, business cards became more advanced. Interestingly, through the timeline, we can see how the cards change in terms of design and etiquette in handing them out. THE 1400S Business cards started Essential self-promotion tools for upper classes. in China back in 15th century. They called as Meishi or "visiting cards" that served as a calling card to announce a meeting with other individual. They are usually decorated with beautiful calligraphy with the sender's name and title, Business cards were handed at an establishment's entrance to let the owner decide if it's worthy to permit a meeting. In China, visiting cards are usually printed on handmade paper. On the other side of the world, Germans printed their names on woodcuts and hand them out as greeting cards. THE 1600S Introduced in Europe during the reign of King Louis XIV It was referred to as a "trade card". It usually contained a map to direct potential customers. The cards served numerous social purposes such as a means of introduction, to express congratulations or condolences and to provide notice of arrival or departure. Women's cards measured 2.75 to 3.5 inches wide by 2 to 2.75 inches high while men's cards are longer and narrower with 3 to 3.4 inches long by 1.25 to 1.5 inches wide. When initialing a calling card, a gentleman would inscribe initials on the card to denote the reason for his visit. The initials stood for the following French words: They were printed by wood cut and letterpress methods. p.f.- congratulations (pour féliciter) p.r.- expressing one's thanks (pour remercier) p.c. - mourning expression (pour condoléance) p.f.N. A. - Happy New Year (pour feliciter Nouvel An) p.p.c.-meaning to take leave (pour prendre congé) p.p. - if you want to be introduced to anybody, send your visiting card (pour présenter) THE 1700S Business cards or trade cards at that time became more advanced and stylish. Copperplate engraving became the standard for the production of trade cards. Agentleman should carry them loose in a convenient pocket; but a lady may use a card case. On making a call, leave your card with the servant. You will Men were expected to leave a card for very woman in the room when visiting a friend. be allowed to see the hostess only after she examines your card. When the door-bell rings, the Agentleman should carry them loose ina convenient pocket; but a lady servant on duty should have the card tray ready to present, on the palm of the left hand. may use a card case. Fold the card in the middle if you wish to indicate that the call is for several, or all of the members If your card of the family. receives no acknowledgment, you must conclude that for some reasons they do not wish to extend their acquaintance. THE 1800S Lithographic printing was born and cards were printed with pictures and in full-color designs. Business cards were still Printing companies offered a broader selection of thicker and verypopular in Europe and etiquette in handing them out was strictly observed. more durable paper stock They also started to become The first stepinthe call- and-card system was to obtain calling cards. By the 1890s, cards had grown plainer, the gentleman's name smaller than the lady's with name and address printed in an ordinary style. for business cards. popular in the United States. It was rude to hand out business card to friends because it was a sign you intended to do business with them By the 1890s, cards had grown plainer, The first step in the call-and-card the gentleman's name smaller than the system was to obtain calling cards. lady's, with name and address printed in an ordinary style. Married couples often had their names together on one card. While unmarried daughters had their names place beneath that of their mother's. Calling cards were carried primarily by the "well-to-do" ladies who made a point to go calling on friends and family on a specified day of the week or month, depending on their location and proximity to neighbors. Calling cards were designed in different style such as hand-calligraphy flourished cards, hidden names, photograph cards, transparent cards, and envelope cards. In the Victorian day, the design, style, and even color border of a card actually carried a message to the receiver. The meaning of the folds were as follows: A folded top left corner meant the visitor had come in person; this corner unfolded meant a servant was sent. A folded bottom left corner signified a farewell A folded top right corner meant congratulations A folded bottom right corner expressed condolence. When calling upon the lady of the house, if she was not home, but her daughter was, the gentleman sent in his card and departed, as it was not usual for a young lady to receive calls from a gentleman unless they were very intimate friends. THE 1900S Business cards in 1900's Because of letterpress printing, printing on different type of materials, such as wood, metal, rubber, plastic, etc. was possible. usually contained the holder's name, title, company and other relevant contact information. Cards were usually printed with the standard size 2"x3.5" Letterpress Printing was introduced. People became creative with the shape and form of their cards. Die-cut and custom business cards were offered by printing companies. During this time, exchange of business cards was quite informal. Some other countries however, were (and still are) meticulous about business card etiquette. Here are some examples: In Japan, it is rude to fold and write on another person's business cards. Holding out business cards in two hands isa sign of respect. When handing overyour card, bow and present yourself by saying your name, company and title. In Korea, itis inappropriate to study the card for too long after receiving it so put the card away soon after receiving it. You should also present your business cards first before asking for someone else's card. In Colombia, make sure to present your card by holding it at one corner with your thumb and index finger to avoid covering up important In India, use your right hand to present and accept business cards. information on the card. THE 2000S As in the 1900's, business cards today contain basic contact People became more creative in designing their business cards. They now come in different colors and fancy designs in different materials such as metal, plastic, wood, rubber, etc. information. Business cards today can be printed on different card stocks with different finishing options such as Spot UV, Embossed, Matte and Gloss. Creative card makers created unusual business cards such as edible cards, transparent cards and 3D business cards. Business cards with QR codes became popular - coinciding with the rise of mobile technology. Clients would simply have to scan the QR code with their gadget and it will direct them to the card owner's website. Another modern form of business is the NFC (Near Field Communication) card. Bringing your phone in close proximity with NFC cards is handy for exchanging data. People can make contactless transactions witha single tap from their mobile phones with NFC cards. http://www.designer-daily.com/a-history-of-business-cards-20266 Sources: http://www.designfloat.com/blog/2012/04/02/history-business-cards/ http://edwardianpromenade.com/etiquette/the-etiquette-of-social-calls-and-calling-cards/ http://www.americanstationery.com/blog/the-history-of-the-calling-card/ http://www.daysofelegance.com/callingcards.html http://www.businesscardreviews.com/business-card-information.html UPrinting .com Spread Your Message!

Interesting Facts on the Evolution of Business Cards

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Did you know that even the simplest business card has tons of interesting factoids?!

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