Business stationery commonly includes letterhead, mailing envelopes, and business cards. These are the basic components of your stationery package. Letterheads are used for writing letters, mailing envelopes for enclosing letters in, and business cards for communicating company contact information. What and how you write your business letters will give your clients an impression about your company. They form the impression on the basis of the verbal signals in the written text. Business stationery, on the other hand, gives your clients an impression about your company through nonverbal means. So, you ought to choose the right business stationery that will give your clients the right impression about your company.
Paper color is one such nonverbal signal in business stationery. Traditionally, most companies use white because it is the popular and conservative color used by most businesses. It also projects an image of formality and neutrality. Off-white and ivory paper, however, are fast becoming commonplace. Other companies prefer bright colors such as red and green to project an image of vitality, or simply to catch attention. Some companies use pastel-colored stationery to project an image of refinement or warmth.
In comparing colors for your business stationery, consider also the color’s possible distracting effect your clients’ reading. Distracting colors can make reading difficult for your clients and can discourage them from forming a positive attitude or outlook towards the sales pitch contained in the letter you sent them.
Consider also the weight of the paper. Paperweight is measured in pounds and refers to the weight of 500 pieces of 17-inch by 22-inch sheets. Lighter weight means lower price, but it also means less durability and increased transparency. Think about the potential nonverbal signal conveyed by thin and flimsy paper. Balance your business’ image needs and your operational budget for stationery.
Consider the paper’s texture and surface as these can have an effect not just on the image your company is projecting but also in printing letters. If you print your letters most of the time using inkjet printers, select a paper type that does not bleed when your printer sprays ink onto it. If you use laser printers, find a type that is not too glossy or too smooth as to prevent the laser toner from sticking to the paper. Choose the appropriate paper texture that will make the printed text appear crisp and readable.
Remember to include company information on your letterheads. Make sure that the company name, address, and contact numbers are printed legibly on the letterhead. Make sure that the font size is not huge enough to distract your reader.
Remember also to include your company logo. The company logo itself - including its design, color, and layout - communicates nonverbally to your clients. So, make sure you have a stunning logo that projects the right image about your company. You might want to consider paper color that complements or matches your company logo’s dominant colors. Though, this should not be a big problem if your paper color of choice is plain white.
Choosing business stationery is not as simple as choosing paper that suits your personal whim or fancy. The most effective business stationery is one that creates a good impression about your company upon the minds of your clients.