Just exactly HOW MUCH mental curiosity can you arouse in a 2 x 3 1/2 inch space?

Real Estate Agent

I received this email today from the Business Card Genius offering me tips on designing my business card.  As I read over these Tips I actually started to chuckle!  How in the world is one suppose to get so much information on a business card that is only 2 x 3 1/2 inches? 

There were 2  items under  Tip #1 Information Elements that I found most interesting.  One of those was #7 Skype number.  Now I have heard of Skype because we have used it in Costa Rica because it is very economical.  You are actually talking on the phone on your computer.  It actually feels a little strange to be sitting there talking to your computer and the person on the other end is broadcast into the room just like speaker phone.  We did get some headphones for our next trip.  Some of our friends that live there year round sit up in the rancho by the pool with their headphones on just talking away on their computers.  You just have to set up an account with Skype and start dialing.  They say that if you call Skype to Skype that it is free!  I guess I need to check into that one.  And the 2nd one was Item #10 IM.  I know that I am a little late catching up with all of this social media stuff but do you have an IM number or an IM name or is it your email address and why would it need to be on your business card?

#13 I do understand about Tagline or Slogan but by the time you get Items 1 thru 12 on the itty bitty card is there room for a tagline?  And #14 Product Identification?  This led me to study the content of my card and to my dismay, nowhere does it say that I sell real estate!  Well actually it does in that tiny little Logo that represents me as a Realtor.  Whew.....I thought that I may not have been clear to these people all these years as to what I actually do!

Then there is the 7 questions under Tip #2.  Target Audience, Mental Curiosity, Ultra compelling promise, trigger emotion (2 kinds of emotion - buying and call me), complement my existing material, and have supporting material?????  The Genius has just brought my mentality down to "Are you smarter than a 5th grader?"   How does one incorporate ALL of this into that tiny little space?

And we just now got to Tip #3 - the Graphics!  Your picture, Your logos, Titles, do you want to update your picture (back to the BAD hair that was addresses in the Intro), Colors, Typeface, Whitespace?, whoops - Target Market - did you change it?  And last but not least "Do You Want to Change Your Card Design to Stand out from the Competition?

Oh no, my only hope of standing apart boils down to this tiny little, itty bitty 2 x 3 1/2 in space on my business card?  And they did not even mention the back of the card!  Ah ha....2 x 3 1/2 times 2!  I am saved!

3 Tips to Better Business Card Designs

So, what is a person that is trying to reach the public with their business card to do?  Here is a sample of my current business card.  As you can see, it looks like a small Rolodex card.  Fully loaded with photo (of course I hate it, does anyone ever like their own photo?), Titles, Achievements, Company and Logo, Address, 5 Different phone numbers, Email, Website and designations.  Oh, and don't forget the not wasted space on the back showing appreciation. (Genuinely)

Debbie Hutchins at Re/Max First Choice

Many thanks to the guys at  I appreciate your email and your stimulation of my thought patterns to inspire me to think more creatively about my one small opportunity to impress and stand apart.  Which is why I shall now call on my fellow Active Rainers and ask........What do you think?  If you had but that one small fraction in time with only a 2 x 3 1/2 inch space in which you hope to procure future business.....What should it say?


I think I may just simplify my next card............

debs doodles about real estate

 I eagerly await your comments!  The New Year is fast approaching and I need to decide if I should breakout with something new and different or stick to the tried and true Rolodex card with a smile!

Debbie Hutchins at Re/Max First Choice













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About the Author

Debbie Hutchins served as a Certified Residential Specialist and licensed Realtor in Alabama from 1987 until 2010.  

We hope you have enjoyed reading and hope you will come back!  You may also subscribe to "debs doodles" and have it delivered to your email! 





Hi Debbie,

As someone who designs business cards for a living, I have some definite opinions about business cards and what should be on them.  After all, I see so many business cards and Realtors/Mortgage Brokers account for about 95% of our business.  I agree with what most have said above that you have too many phone numbers listed on your card.  Most phones offer the ability to forward, and when you list too many numbers, people aren't sure which number to call.  It is best to have one number that can forward to wherever you need it to.  Ring Central is a great way to solve this problem as you have one number for everything, including faxes!!!  And...with the faxes coming through that number as well, they are in PDF format so they can easily be forwarded printed, etc.    I have been told by other Remax agents, that Remax doesn't require you to have a large logo????  This one, not sure about...but there is really no need for you to have both logos, is there?  I also agree that your designations only mean something to other in real estate.  I do like your headshot...and believe me, I have seen sooooo many and some of them are simply really, really bad.  Yours is nice. :-)  I think I will even go one-step further if you don't mind.  This is how I would lay out your card if I was the designing it. :-)  business card one - business card two

All my best.

nadine - PrinterBees

Dec 15, 2008 03:20 AM
Debbie Hutchins
Birmingham, AL

Oh my goodness!  Nadine I love it!  It is so clean and crisp!  You can always tell the difference when a Professional steps in!  It just does not identify the ReMax office that I am with which is ReMax First Choice and  we would need to tweek the spelling on my name.

Thank you so much for reading my post and especially for commenting. 

Maybe I need to check into this Ring Central and the Printer Bees!


Dec 15, 2008 06:39 AM
Tim Bradley
Contour Investment Properties - Jackson Hole, WY
Commercial Real Estate Expert in Jackson Hole, WY

Nadine has it right. Keep it simple. One phone number plus a fax number. You can leave your cell phone number on your voice mail, or forward the office line to the cell when you are not in. Simple cards are soooo much more readable.

Dec 15, 2008 06:59 AM
Es r
CSR - Huntington, TX

Now I have to get all new cards after this blog.

Dec 15, 2008 07:51 AM
Mary Strang
Viroqua, WI

Gee it is time for me to buy some new cards too, guess I better study this more since you look like you have done your homework well!

Dec 15, 2008 08:25 AM
Kevin Vitali
EXIT Realty Beatrice Associates - Middleton, MA
Helping Massachusetts Home Buyers and Home Sellers

Wow... maybe we should keep some billboards in our pockets to hand out.  At least we can fit the information on it.  I come from an advertising background and have noticed how poor the design can be in our industry.  When it comes to business cards we try to fit every bit of information plus our photo on a business card.  Is it truly necessary?


Dec 16, 2008 04:26 AM
Mike Henderson
Your complete source for buying HUD homes - Littleton, CO
HUD Home Hub - 303-949-5848

My wife, a designer, hates most Realtor and investors business cards.

Dec 26, 2008 08:00 AM
Elayna Fernandez
the Positive MOM - Fort Worth, TX
BE Positive and You'll BE Powerful!

I think most Realtor business cards are so busy and crowded. Simplicity is key. It's a business card not a manual.  I would love to get a screenshot of the card design you went for and to know what information you ended up putting on there.

Jan 04, 2009 11:15 PM

Hi Debbie!

Thanks for getting back and I am glad you liked what I came up with.  If you do have interest in working with us at PrinterBees, we will waive the regular design fee for you as most of it is already done.  After I made my first post to you, I thought to myself how Realtors ever have any real personal time when your home number is on your business card.  The ring central thing is such a great way to go, because of the ability to have your calls go where you want them to and your ability to have your personal space where your clients dont have access to you.  I had one client way back who was in the hospital giving birth and had a client hassling her AT THE HOSPITAL!  How crazy is that?  If you do choose to go to Ring Central, make sure to follow the link on my site at: 
You will receive a discount from them because I am customer and am referring you on over.

Good luck with it and let us know if you wish for us to complete your cards.  We charge $49.99 for 1000 biz cards and they are super good quality!!!  Happy New Year!


Jan 05, 2009 05:37 AM
Nadine more thing....for Realtors who are in the state of California (not sure about other states...does anyone know about other states?).  As of July 1, 2009 YOU MUST HAVE YOUR DRE# on all of your marketing materials...including business cards.  At PrinterBees, we are offering free shipping for mortgage/real estate agents who need to update their cards due to the new law that goes in to effect this year.  Anything we can do to help out.

Jan 05, 2009 05:41 AM
Tammy Deviley
RE/MAX Select REALTORS LLC - Green Bay, WI

Personally I have the referrals are always appreciated but I really like the TIP Calculator!

Jan 08, 2009 11:37 AM
Cynthia Grimes

I like the back of the card, "Come play in the rain with me" should certainly get attention.  The curious person who receives a card like that will be likely to visit your blog.  Great idea!

Jan 12, 2009 10:51 AM
Debbie Hutchins
Birmingham, AL

Thanks to YOU ALL for all of these great comments!  I never new that business cards could actually be interesting but conversing with you all has proven to be most enlightening!  Now I will need to put all of these thoughts together and come up with a plan!

Jan 12, 2009 01:14 PM
Christine McInerney
Great Life RE - Knoxville, TN
The McInerney Team, Knoxville TN Homes For Sale

I agree with Cynthia, a compleing tag line linking to your webaddress is a good idea.

Jan 13, 2009 02:41 AM
Sergio Enciso
Marlborough, MA

Here's an idea. Instead of cramming in your personal auto-biography into a little rectangle, Invest in a simple easy to remember domain name tied to a simple page that links to your webness (blogs,twitter,facebook etc.) and contact info. Then place that domain name on your simple and clean business card.

Jan 15, 2009 06:39 AM
Paul Duffau
Safe@Home Inspections, LLC in SE Washington - Asotin, WA
Caring for People, Educating about Homes

A question out of curiosity - what would happen if you went to non-standard sizes for your business card?  Not huge but different....

Jan 21, 2009 04:09 AM
Debbie Hutchins
Birmingham, AL

Lots of great ideas!  I specially like the ideas of simple with just a domain name  with links to all my web pages.  COOL!

Jan 22, 2009 03:46 PM
Shuki Haiminis - Boston, MA


That's why we ned 3 dimensional biz we have more sides to get all the info w want on them :)

Jan 31, 2009 09:50 PM
Brad Powers

Here's an idea based off the service we sell to realtors.

On the back of my business card i have FOR MORE INFO TEXT "REAL 2" to 95495. Everytime I get a text comes in I get the persons contact info and they get some information about the company. Usually this is becuase someone gave one of my business cards to a friend. Its catchy and seems to get a nice response.

For realtors business cards i would recommend a mobile site with listing information in the text response. How cool would it be to get all that listing info!. (We also do that!)


Feb 09, 2009 05:05 AM
Alisa Stone Herring
Stone Real Estate Group, LLC - Panama City Beach, FL

I like the idea about the text on the back of the card. That is a great idea.


And you are right- it is so hard to know what to put on the card and what not to

Feb 12, 2009 03:27 PM