If you’ve met Jottful’s Natalie Bruno, then you probably have her business card. Few people network more effectively than Natalie and she’s a big proponent of business cards for sharing contact information and organizing follow-up.

So we asked Natalie to relay her biggest business-card pet peeves. This is what she told us:


1. Non-standard sizes

Receiving a European-sized or square-shaped business card is interesting… until you realize it won’t fit into your business-card holder and so you’ll have to toss it into the bottom of your handbag instead. 

Six months later you find it down there, all covered in lint, and you can’t remember who that person was… so you throw it away. 

Don’t let this happen to your business card! Stick to the standard 3.5 x 2 inches.


2. Tiny text

It’s true: business cards are small. But that doesn’t mean the text should scale down, too. Don’t make the recipient of your card wear reading glasses just to get your contact information. 

Fight the urge to shrink the text size so you can fit more onto the card.


3. Too much info 

While we’re on the topic of cramming, remember that white space is your friend. Focus on the most important information and avoid overloading your card with additional content that distracts from the main point.


4. Glossy coating

People often take notes on the business cards they receive, in order to recall the context or conversation. But when you write with a pen on glossy-coated paper, the ink smears and the message becomes illegible. 


5. Insufficient contrast

To ensure your recipient (or your recipient’s automatic card reader!) can gather all the information they need from your card, make sure there’s enough contrast between the colors you use for the text and background. Light on dark, or dark on light.


6. Out-of-date info 

Has your office moved? Has your phone number or email address changed? 

If your contact information is no longer accurate, drop your old business cards in the recycle bin and get some new ones printed.