Adding Value to Print Projects
If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, printers have a unique opportunity to amplify what is beautiful about ink on paper by paying careful attention to a few critical components which are unique to printing as a medium.
By understanding what these are — and how to sell them — you'll be on your way to more satisfied customers and an opportunity for enhanced profitability.
Keep your customers, and your bottom line, happy by giving special attention to the following six elements of every print project:
1. Materials Matter.
Whether it's printed direct mail helping a local pizzeria capture new business or a photo keepsake commemorating a newlyweds special day — materials play a monumental role. For any printed project, paper is its identity.
And when it comes to leaving a positive first impression, your customers are generally willing to spend extra on higher-quality substrates.
Take photo books, for instance. In an InfoTrends survey asking consumers what features they'd be most willing to pay extra for, higher quality materials ranked towards the top of the list. Nearly 80% said they'd be willing to pay 10% or more for better quality substrates. And of those respondents, more than 20% said they'd be willing to pay 40% or more.
Tip: Help your customers understand the impact of higher-quality papers. Having swatch books and samples on hand can help your customers visualize how their project could look with a premium paper. Offer to print a sample for them; even just the cover of their printed piece can help them perceive the quality.
2. Sustainable Options.
As the fastest-growing generation in the U.S. workforce, Millennials bring with them a strong preference for sustainable products. This is the first generation willing to consciously spend more for products that are environmentally friendly, as well as use environmental messaging in their own companies' communications. A survey by Nielsen found that "66 percent of the 30,000-plus respondents said they would be willing to pay extra for sustainable goods."
And this movement applies beyond the United States into international markets too. Asia Pulp & Paper conducted a survey and found that "nearly 70% of Hong Kong consumers are willing to pay an additional 5% or more to purchase paper products from sustainable sources."
Tip: Appeal to your customers' sense of responsibility by offering and promoting sustainable choices. Mohawk has a diverse collection of environmentally responsible products, from extremely high PCW recycled papers to carbon neutral and FSC-certified products. Browse our collection here.
3. Digital Enhancements.
When getting noticed is a top priority, sometimes a simple CMYK printed piece isn't enough. That's where enhancements come into play. Specialty inks (such as metallics, fluorescents, whites and clears), textured prints, varnishes, foils, IR/UV inks and more all pack added punch to your print jobs.
And these are features your customers are willing to pay a premium for — in some cases up to 89% more than CMYK-only print — according to InfoTrends.
Tip: Talk with your customers and see if this is something they're interested in. Evaluate potential opportunities to see whether you can justify an equipment investment. Many of today's digital presses offer specialty inks and digital enhancements inline. Similarly, there are a number of near-line solutions available in the market which offer new ways to enhance 4-color work.
4. Larger than Life Substrates.
Adding a neon color or metallic foil to your printed piece or direct mailer isn't the only way to cut through the clutter. Sometimes the size of your printed piece can be just as effective in achieving the unexpected.
An oversized mailer or heavy cover stock creates a level of impact that commands attention through physical presence.
Tip: Discuss these unique formats with your customers. Explain the importance of standing apart amongst a sea of similarly sized mailers. Despite the higher mailing costs, chances are your customers will be willing to spend extra for higher open and response rates.
We all know direct mail is more effective than email, boasting a 3.7% response rate compared to email's 0.2%. But what happens when you transform flat mailers into 3-dimensional pieces?
Well, let's just say its like mail on steroids, outperforming flat mailings by 200 to 300 percent.
Tip: Dimensional mail isn't right for every campaign or everyone. It can be very costly. Talk with your customers to see if a dimensional mailer might be the right solution to helping achieve their business goals. When it comes to producing dimensional mailers, Mohawk offers a diverse portfolio to choose from, including pre-perforated and pre- scored options.
6. One-of-a-Kind Folds.
When a recipient can't put a printed piece down because they're playing with its creative folds, you know you have a winner. And that's exactly the type of high-impact reaction your customers are willing to pay extra for. Pinwheel, oyster, multi-panel, accordion, pedal, gate, and cross are just a few of the many types of folds that can turn a printed piece from ordinary to unforgettable.
Tip: If you're looking for ideas and inspiration on fantastic folds on future jobs, check out www.foldfactory.com. This is a fantastic resource for folding tutorials, die-line templates, and more!
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