Bartleby Press

Bartleby Press

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Online Advertising and Print advertising: the best of both worlds

The past adverse economic times and the potential growth from online advertising dictate our need for expansion in the electronic world. It has us all scrambling for new ideas. Unfortunately, some businesses are blinded by the need for growth that they forget what built their brand in the first place. Consider this. The majority of the businesses are modestly sized, under $1 million and more precisely under $500,00 in revenue and for the most part restricted to a geographical area. The idea that you could become global is exciting. The reality is can you really compete with a business two thousand miles away when that customer could get the same product across town?

Finding what makes your business remarkable is the key to your success. If you are able to map that message and support it with metrics to proof your value then and only then will your print advertising have the effect that you want. Your website is the tool of choice to find out what people need from you. Capture those metrics and you are a step ahead of your competition.

Your presence online is a necessity. It is the new “yellow pages.” It renders legitimacy to your business. It provides far more information than a flyer or brochure. It gives insight and references that are otherwise left to more traditional means of advertising. Every business has to have a website. Even better, if you can order products online. But there are some essentials every business must have. The essentials include old-fashioned networking and point-of-sale print advertising: brochures, flyers, and the quintessential business card. Printing services can give one of the most substantial boosts to your company's sales.

What comes across as definitive conclusions that print advertising is available at very moderate prices and is also fast becoming an indispensable tool of promotion. Partner with your local printing service is a valuable resource. The most notable features of this relationship for your print advertising are quick turn-around, archiving of files and a print management out-sourcing service that saves you money. The very ease, with which you can avail print services, has never been this appealing.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Frequently Asked Questions About the Printing Process

How does the quality of digital print compare to offset?  
The assets of digital printing are not the image quality as much as it is the quick turn-around. Image quality, color and toner (ink) coverage are comparable to traditional offset printing but digital printing can deliver in a pinch and quickly. Not to say that digital printing will ever replace offset printing but it has already captured the short-run quick turn-around market. On the other hand, offset printing is the workhorse of the industry and will continue to deliver the larger runs. 

Can you print from camera ready artwork? 
In most cases, yes. However, the conversion from RGB and your computer is a world apart from CMYK and the plate process, even with digital printing. That is a good reason to have a relationship with a printing service that can advise you on correcting your files or can take care of that for you.

Can you match my color exactly?  

Offset printing is more exact than digital. Tweeking colors on your computer can complicate the exact match of color. The digital printing process is designed for CMYK inks and some Pantone colors are often difficult to match in a CMYK environment.

Can you print RGB? No. RGB are not standard printing colors. 

What paper can run on your presses? 

Most of your paper selections are compatible with the exception of heavy card stocks. It is always a good idea to check with your printing service.
Can I proof my files before going to press? 

Absolutely. Digital printing images are exact. Keep in mind that unless you have a press check for offset printing most proofs will fall within minuscule percentages of the finish product. Press check requires you standing in the press room when the sheets come off the press. This is an expensive additional cost.

What size files can we e-mail? 

Compressed files using a utility such as StuffIt, PCZip, or other compression software and email is standard. If it is a large project you will have to use a FTP. 

What do you need besides the document in a file?

If the file is a PDF, nothing. Make sure all your fonts are embedded and the graphic files are linked and there should be no problem. It is always a good idea to send the file in the application it was built in along with all fonts and graphics. It will help the printer and expedite the project if there are any last minute corrections or adjustments. 

What's the best way to save images? 

300 dpi tiffs and exact sizing and cropping of images are recommended to produce the highest quality printing. 

What file formats do you recommend for printing? 

We can accept any number of page layout files. We do prefer Indesign files.

Monday, May 2, 2011

A simple guide of what to look for before you hire a printing firm

Are all Print Services the Same?

Many factors to consider above pricing is the print management service they offer. Why? Because this is all about quality and will ensure that your project goes as planned. Not all printing services check the quality status of your project from the moment they received your order, through the printing process and up to delivery of your finished product. A mass volume printing service not unlike some of the cut-rate web sources have this dedication in providing the best service to your clients. That is why you should always look for a local printing service one that has a quality control process.

Contacting a Print firm
You and the representative of the printing company will discuss your project in detail. Having a spec sheet of the materials needed to complete your project including the deadline is ideal to get an apples-to-apples quote and your exact expectations of the finished product.

Getting the Quote
The quote should be as detailed as possible to get an accurate cost to get your project completed. Every material and process to be used should be indicated.

Awarding the Job
Most firms will ask for money down with a new client and that amount varies with firms. Standard is 50%. Once you accept the quote and sign it is a binding form between you and the printing company.

Providing the Artwork
Checking your files is a critical part of any print management service. The printer should thoroughly check your art files and make sure that the file is of high quality for reproduction in the printing process. They should call and give you a detailed report and perhaps even offer you suggestions and services to ensure the quality of your project.

The Proof
The printer proceeds with pre-flight of your project and will send a high-resolution proof either a physical or in PDF. The latter is a good option especially if you need to view it quickly and you are currently out of your office or home. If color is critical a hard proof is better.

Print Production
This is the actual printing process and where the highest form of quality checking will be done and matched against your proof.  Folding, scoring and all finishing work is completed.

The Delivery
When the finished product is ready the printing service will pack it properly and or store it in a safe place for future delivery.

A good rule is to ask the printing firm about their quality checking procedures. Hiring a local printer with a quality control process is best and avoids the pitfalls of an online printing.

About the Author: Thomas Miner is the owner of Bartleby Press, a quality printing service.