I was introduced to the services of MOO.com by my friend Andrew during a recent trip to New York City. We were sitting in a bar talking about our respective websites, when he whipped out one of his new business (mini) cards. I was immediately struck by the smaller than normal dimensions, specifically 20mm x 70 mm (roughly 1/3 the size of a typical card). On the front was a picture he had taken of a bicycle, the same he has on his blog header. On the back was his name, occupation (artist, educator, producer), website, and phone number. My first impression when he showed me the card was “cool, I want one!”
I had been tossing around the idea of buying a set of business cards or custom stickers for my trip so as to promote my website while traveling, however I was faced with the reality of being a less than stellar graphic artist. Seeing the great quality of Andrew's cards, I realized my past travel photos would instantly fill the creative void I was going to face down the road.
Within a few days of returning home, I pulled up MOO's website to customize my first set of cards. As he had informed me, you can order 100 MiniCards for $20, with the flexibility to choose a different image for each card. MOO allows you to upload images through their site, or access them via others, including Flickr. As I had begun to use Flickr a few months ago, I selected that option, followed by the MiniCard size (versus a larger Notecard size available).
The instructions indicated the process was as simple as 1 – Choose, 2 – Crop, 3 – Personalize, and 4 – Purchase. Once I had chosen the size, a page loaded with my Flickr photostream, and I began the challenging process of deciding which of my fantastic images should represent me, my blog, and my future travels! Once I had selected the lucky photos by (dragging and dropping in a box), I moved on to the cropping stage. The site makes this process easy, however I did swap about 20% of my photos after seeing how they looked with the cropping. You have to be judicious with only 1,400 square millimeters of space. The personalization options include 3 fonts, 9 font colors, 12 small images for the back side (including your Flickr profile photo), and the ability to add a variety of info to each card (such as title, license, or camera details). The final step is payment, and I was pleased to see the shipping was only $4.99, bringing the total cost to $24.98. The cards arrived within 2 weeks of my order.
The MOO experience is fun and lighthearted. It is filled with witty words from the company. For example, when I tried to backtrack using browser navigation, the expected page didn't reload. Instead, I received an error message which stated “Oops, sorry, something untoward has occurred! An email has been sent to our hardworking developer bees.” The British humor cracked me up, and you don't get the feeling they're trying too hard either. A filler info card which I received along with my set says “Yay! You're our new best friend.”
Yes, MOO is my new best friend, and if you're looking for an easy, inexpensive, creative way to market yourself, your blog, or anything else, check out their printing services!