Even in a digital world, print marketing is far from dead — in fact, more than three-fourths of small businesses say they’d prefer to incorporate both online and print elements in their marketing campaigns. Whether your business is a storefront that needs aisle signs or a primarily online business that wants to open up new markets with direct mailings, it’s likely you’ll need to work with a professional printing company at some point in time. But with so many printing options available, how can you know what company will most benefit your business in the long run? Here are five suggestions of what to look for when choosing a new printing company:
- Digital and Offset Processes
Digital and offset printing are the two main techniques used by commercial printing companies. In the first, projects are printed directly from a digital file, whereas in the second, metal plates and rubber cylinders are used to transfer the ink. You might be assuming that a digital printing company will save your business money, but that’s not necessarily true; while digital printing is cheaper when you only need a few copies, offset printing has a lower price per unit when you’re printing more than 500 or 1,000 of something. By choosing a printing company that offers both processes, you’ll be able to choose the best option for each individual project.
- A Wide Range of Potential Products
Ideally, the print company you end up choosing should be able to handle everything from your holiday gift calendars to your large advertising banners. This will allow you to develop an ongoing business-to-business relationship that will get you better products and prices in the long run.
- A Willingness to Experiment
Equipment is only one part of the printing process. What matters even more is the skill of the printers themselves and their willingness to try new things. A great print company will do everything it can to keep its employees up to date on the latest techniques, and will be a partner for helping you make your next print project truly outstanding.
- Fast Turnaround Time
Your business needs can change quickly, and you’ll want to find a printing company that can accommodate those demands (without charging you exorbitant rush fees). Part of this will depend on the printing processes a printing company offers — digital printing, since it requires far less setup, typically has very fast turnaround times — but will also depend on how a company is structured.
- Great Customer Service
Designing and creating print products might not be your expertise, and it doesn’t have to be: An outstanding print company will have customer service representatives who can patiently answer questions and offer help so that you can spend less time worrying about printing and more time growing your business.
What else should businesses look for in a professional printing company? Share your advice in the comments.