Marketing Focus

The winning entries highlight professionalism and creativity.

By Nina Patel

Grand Award

Tim Murphy Carpentry Chicago

Designer: Lisa Laske, vice president, k/g communications, Evanston, Ill.; Artist: Dan Howe, Rippon, Wis.

The judges unanimously decided that the Tim Murphy Carpentry business cards were the most effective in communicating what the company does through the design and information on the card. "The brand is clear," one judge said.

The judges liked the white space around the name and title on the card. The address, phone, e-mail, and Web site information is clean and simple.

The company created the design for their window restoration division. Owner Tim Murphy says the idea came from an original painting by his friend, who is an illustrator and artist. Marketing consultant Lisa Laske designed the cards, and she also used the distinctive art on posters, brochures, coffee mugs, and other marketing materials. Murphy says hiring a consultant to handle the design and printing was very helpful. Though the cards cost more than he had spent in the past, Murphy says it was worth it for the positive reaction from clients.

Merit Award

Harrell Remodeling, Mountain View, Calif.

Designer: Linda Koutsky, Minneapolis

The designer placed the company logo on a pillar and used textured paper that highlights the fluted detail of a column. The judges said the column indicates strength and gives the card interesting proportion.

Harrell Remodeling recently moved into a new building, and they decided to turn a simple address change into a complete business card redesign. The new card has subdued colors, a sophisticated design, and an updated use of the company's iris-shaped logo (the company owner's name is Iris). Harrell Remodeling designer and salesperson Lisa Sten says people in the community recognize the iris logo, so she wanted to keep it but make it work better. Sten advises remodelers to use business cards to reflect the personality of their business. "Use the card to thematically match your style," she says.

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