Maybe you’re sick of your old stationery. Maybe your business is due for a rebranding. Maybe you’re just beginning to appreciate the value well-executed business materials can bring to your organization. Regardless of your reasons, we’ve got tips that will ensure you’ll soon have your best business stationery yet.
Hire a professional graphic designer
While you should, by all means, come up with your own concepts for your stationery, unless you have some experience with branding and graphic design, you’re probably not doing your brand any favors by attempting to create the final set yourself. Not only does it take hours of study and experience to execute professional-looking artwork on different media, but a designer will also have to match a stationery set’s design with your organization’s business objective.
It may seem deceptively simple, but in reality, even the simplest designs take at least dozens if not hundreds of hours of study, testing, and documentation. You may be able to get OK results by doing the design yourself. However, it’s likely to be less than you hoped for, which is not something you want on stationery that will be used for day-to-day communication, for what may be years to come.
Include important contact details
Whether it’s a simple memo pad, invoice slip, or letterhead you’ll want to include important contact details, including your phone number as well as an active email address. Make sure to update your stationery set if any of those details change.
Stay within your brand
Sometimes a look that appeals to you personally may not be necessarily one that works best for your brand. When you present your requirements to your graphic designer, make sure that the color scheme, visual details, and fonts that you require are a good match for your organization. Your designer should be able to make some recommendations as well. At the end of the day, whatever designs you choose for your business stationery should be in the service of your brand, and not merely aesthetic decisions.
Try engraved, embossed, or foil design elements
The use of engraving, embossing, or foil in your stationery can add a visual and tactile depth that simply doesn’t exist in ordinary printing. These techniques can also be used to add flair or a touch of class to an otherwise plain looking letterhead or memo. Use these techniques to highlight logos and other important visuals without resorting to an overly-cluttered design.
Keep it timeless
Good stationery designs should not need to be swapped out unless a fundamental change in your business’s brand takes place. Ideally, a design should be “timeless” in that you could be using the same basic design in ten years without it looking dated.
While it’s almost impossible to definitively say what stationery designs are timeless, a good starting point would be to look at older sets from the past that still hold up today. The stationery collection is a surprisingly popular topic, and there are hundreds of curated lists of excellent historical examples online to take inspiration from.