Creating a Custom Font for Business Cards

If you have the know-how, creating a custom font for business cards can contribute to the overall uniqueness of a company's first impression, and thus help convert more sales. Creating a custom font isn't that difficult if you have the right resources, but first it's important to make sure you really want to use a custom font.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when considering creating a custom font for a client's business card.

Make sure your client agrees

The last thing you want to do is spend a lot of time creating the perfect custom font and have your client veto it in favor of a pre-existing font. Sure, it's great practice for next time, but you're also in business to make money. Before you create the font in question, make sure you demonstrate a mockup (even if it's handwritten) to your client first.

Be expressive

If you're going to create a custom font, make it fabulous. Just like matching existing fonts with the mood, style, and personality of your client's business, make sure you take the same considerations when creating a custom font. This is your best opportunity to truly capture the feel of your client's business in font, and also to evoke the proper emotions from their potential customers. Let your creativity shine, and think of ways to meld the font in with the business card design. In fact, it's a good practice to wait until the rest of the business card design is established before your start to create a custom font.

Follow the rules, but break them if you have to

Decide whether the custom font will be serif or sans serif, and stick to that format. You want your custom font to have a uniform look to it. For instance, let's say you put a double strike through on the vertical lines of a capitalized letter M. All other letters with similar vertical lines should have the same double strike through or you'll lose conformity. Keep in mind that your custom font doesn't have to look like it was computer-generated; sometimes hand-written fonts can accentuate thoughtful business cards. Don't get too fancy: You want your font to enhance, not distract. Above all, make sure it looks great - even if you have to break the rules a bit.

Take advantage of your resources

Depending on your software, your skill level, and schedule, there are many different approaches to take when creating a custom font for business cards. Many graphic designers simply hand-draw a font on a template or other piece of paper, scan it in, and use a conversion program to fine-tune the design and create an installable font. Other font design programs exist, with varying fees. If your current design software cannot create custom fonts, search around on the web for one that will fit your needs. No matter what program you choose, make sure that it can export a font file that's compatible with your design software or you won't be able to use the font.