Even the simplest bindery department can be a complicated operation with a mix of post-press machinery, procedures and materials. No matter how well-trained an operator or manager, it's easy to miss something that leads to a mistake. We can all probably recall more than once getting that “uh-oh” feeling after finishing a job. You’d open a box to double-check that you had folded something the right way or kept various lots of a saddle stitched book separate.
One of my favorite and most successful marketing ideas came to me from a chiropractor. In fact, nearly all of the successful marketing strategies here at Technifold USA were inspired by ideas from outside the printing industry.
Don’t get mad; I’m not bashing the printing industry. After all, I am IN the industry. I rely on it and I intend to be around it for a long time. The point is that as with industries everywhere, we tend to narrow our focus to our own community.
We keep an eye on what our competitors, colleagues and vendors do. How they advertise. How they sell. What they sell. What they’re reading. Who’s who and where they work. There is some sort of tribal comfort in being an insider.
There is always some shiny new marketing idea, media or strategy being presented as the next big thing. I admit I’m easily distracted by cool, new techno-wizardry or the latest marketing fad and at times am overwhelmed by sheer choice. But experience has taught me there is truly nothing new under the sun. When faced with countless choices of apps, software, tools, fads and experts, there is an easy way to take the mystery out of new marketing ideas and instantly figure out if it’s of any use. I’ll share that in a moment.
Do you truly believe in the power of the printed word? If I were to judge by the number of printed newsletters I get from commercial printers or quick copy shops, I’d be forced to say “No.” (That number by the way, is zero printed newsletters from the more than 18,000 printing businesses with which we’ve had contact for over ten years.)
There are some surprising reasons a commercial printing business (or any small business) might lose a client. If you’ve been around the printing industry for any time, you know all about the common yet fatal customer service problems such as missed deadlines, printing errors, or finishing mistakes.
Several times a week I get emails with either the “print is not dead” theme or its opposite, “print is dead”. The latest one to hit my inbox asks “Is Direct Mail Dead?” Sometimes the articles are good and thoughtful. Frequently though, they are headline bait for pointless, shallow blurbs where the only thing that matters is a click.
If search results are any indicator it seems the print-is-not-dead camp is winning. There were 429,000 Google search results for “print is not dead” versus 129,000 results for “print is dead.”
I say the argument doesn’t matter. What matters is what’s happening in our own backyard and the results on our bottom line. Successful small businesses don’t rely on the predictions and forecasts of pundits or the public at large. Taken as a whole, forecasters and predictors of the future tend to be wrong, so why let them take up space in our brains?
Here are seven sites to help you discover things about print finishing you might not have thought you needed to know. They range from the unusual to the scholarly and a few places in between!
The type of folding machine we’re talking about is seen in thousands of small quick printing shops and digital printing departments around the world. It has two fold plates along with either a friction or air feeder. Some of the more popular ones include Baum 714, Morgana UFO, MB CAS, Challenge Medalist, Martin Yale and many more. They handle the most common types of folds such as letter fold, accordion folds, double parallel, and single folds.
One of the beneficial things about an abundance of print finishing technology is that we get more flexibility in how, when, and where to finish any given job. Yet that same flexibility makes production planning more complex.