There’s no way to erase printer ink from paper. Getting print products done right the first time is crucial. Even the slightest of errors can cost you. When it comes to selecting a print fulfillment partner, it’s not as simple as finding the company with the cheapest price or the fastest turnaround. It’s more complex than that. There are nuances in the process of print design, production, order fulfillment, and distribution, when done incorrectly, lead to waste and overspending. We’ll help you avoid some costly mistakes when choosing a fulfillment partner for your print marketing materials.
1. Not evaluating your print supply enough.
One of the most common mistakes companies make is not evaluating their print collateral supply and demand regularly. This leads to major waste and overspending. Not only would you be overspending on print, but if you’re paying to store your supply somewhere, then you’d also be overspending on storage of materials you don’t even need.
We recommend that you assess your print needs and supply a couple times a year. Alternatively, you can rely on a third-party vendor to do this for you. Integrated marketing solutions providers like Olivan have the capacity to handle your creative services and manage your print supply.
Choosing a fulfillment partner that has the tech to track your usage and identify patterns in your print product demand will ensure you always have the right amount when you need it and that you’re not overspending or wasting unnecessarily.
2. Telling the supplier the level of service you require.
When searching for a fulfillment partner for your print marketing materials, don’t give them the answers you’re looking for. What we mean by this is don’t tell them the level of service you expect or need. Let them sell to you by providing proof of the quality of service they offer. If you tell them exactly what you need, they will likely promise exactly that.
Instead, ask them what they offer as standard. Talk to them about their service and have them show you some proof of their level of service. This way, you can understand how they normally work rather than being sold on a promise they can’t deliver on.
3. Not asking about the security system.
Another potentially costly mistake is not asking about the security protocols. Since you’ll be sharing data – sometimes sensitive data – you need to ensure they have a system for safely storing and backing up that data. Ask potential print fulfillment partners about this. On top of that, talk to them about their server security and how they can guarantee your data will remain secure and confidential. This might include a discussion about confidentiality agreements.
4. Trusting they can deliver on time.
Getting your print marketing materials on time is critical. That’s why you should never just trust what any print supplier tells you about delivery times. Have a discussion about delivery times and how they ensure your order is fulfilled on time. Ideally, request some sort of proof that they can fulfill your orders accordingly.
One way you could do this is to read reviews or request references and talk to them about their experience. A vendor with a solid track record of on-time delivery shouldn’t be shy about sharing their clients’ experiences and testimonials.
5. Not asking about quality control procedures.
Imagine you get your print materials and they’re not right. This is unacceptable. When selecting a print fulfillment vendor, ask about quality control. Ask the representative what quality assurance procedures they have in place and how they can guarantee your materials will be right, the first time.
A good print partner will have written quality control procedures, which they should be able to share with you to assure you that their process is solid and there will be no mistakes.
6. Using inexperienced designers.
The last mistake on our list has to do with design file errors. We’ve seen it so many times. A designer passes along creative that has blurry or pixelated images, lettering that bleeds together, the wrong file type, etc. Your designer might not be familiar with the equipment your print management partner uses. Even though some of these mistakes are small, they can cost you.
For example, you have your designer mock up some brochures and send them to be printed. You receive the print products and find they’re just a bit off or didn’t print right. You have to have the entire order re-printed. That’s how even the smallest of errors can add up.
Get it done correctly the first time by selecting a good print partner who knows what they’re doing. Even better, try to work with an integrated marketing company that will handle your creative services and get your designs, print files, and print products right the first time.
Olivan Goes Above and Beyond
Ultimately, you want to find a marketing collateral fulfillment partner with high standards that you can trust to do the job well. Olivan has been providing on-time delivery of print marketing materials for 20 years. Our clients love working with us and know they can trust us to get the job done right the first time, every time.
We supply restaurant chains, pharmaceutical and healthcare companies, and even franchises like Jiffy Lube, with their print materials. So, we’re accustomed to complex printing requirements, fast turnarounds, as well as on-demand and variable printing. Plus, we can take care of all your creative services and manage your print supply.
Simplify your print marketing management.