How To On-board Your Print Partner

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Hiring the right print partner can have a huge impact on your business. You already know what to look for in a print partner, but once you’ve made your hire, it’s essential that you get them up to speed and set them up for success in order to get the most out of your new relationship.

Here are some tips on how to on-board your print partner:

 

Train Them On Your Policies and Procedures

The first thing you’ll need to do when on-boarding your print partner is get them up to speed on your company policies and procedures. Every company has a different way of doing things, and your print partner needs to be in the loop on how everything runs.

So, for example, what’s the procedure for submitting invoices? Do they need to be submitted on a weekly or monthly basis? Who should they submit them to? How long do they take to be paid out, and who’s the correct contact to reach out to if they have any questions or concerns?

Or, as another example, what’s your company policy on submitting print jobs? Should they only accept requests from you, or are there multiple managers within the company that are authorized to order prints?

Making sure that your print partner has a clear understanding of the policies and procedures within your business will be critical in avoiding mis-communications and misunderstandings down the road.

 

Establish Communication Expectations

It’s also important to establish expectations for communications.

Everyone has different communication preferences, and it’s important that you and your print partner get on the same page from the get-go on how you’re going to be communicating. Do they prefer to communicate primarily through email or do they also want a weekly touch-base over the phone? Do they prefer revisions to be submitted on email or through an online customer portal? What’s the expectation for how quick they’ll respond to requests or last minute print needs?

Squaring this off at the beginning of the relationship will help things flow smoothly and make sure that everyone feels they’re being communicated with in a respectful and mutually beneficial way.

 

Setup Systems

If you want a successful (and low maintenance) relationship with your new print partner, you’re going to want to establish systems off the bat. Systematizing as much of your print processes as possible will ensure that your relationship with your print partner runs like a well-oiled machine and will minimize the amount of involvement you’ll need on a day-to-day basis.

Set up a meeting with your print partner, review every aspect of the print process and develop a system that both of you agree on. You’ll want to have a system for everything: how to submit new print requests, how to submit revisions, what to do if an order is misprinted and what to do if you have a request you need completed during off hours.

Write every system down in a manual and have your print partner sign off on it. Having systems in place will eliminate any confusion and enable things to happen quickly and easily as your relationship progresses. Having all of your systems in place (and in a document) will also help make the transition smooth if you need to hire a new print partner or your current partner brings a new team member on board to manage your account.

 

How Can We Help?

At Rogue Print and Mail, our proven track record of delivering the highest quality graphic design and print services to professionals speaks for itself. With fast turnaround times, industry specific templates and designs, an online portal available for any groups that wish to work with us to be able to store and manipulate their templates, and an in-house team to guide you in all of your branding, design and printing needs, Rogue Print and Mail is the preferred design and print partner for many hundreds of professionals across Australia.

I sincerely hope that you found this information valuable.  For advice on effective branding, design and cross media marketing, please don’t hesitate to call me on 1300 65 85 00 or email me at paul.stenhouse@rogueprintandmail.com.au  to arrange an obligation free 10 minute discussion with a member of our expert team.

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Print Best Practices

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Hiring a print partner to make sure that you get the highest quality print projects completed? Here are some print best practices to ensure that you hire the right person or team:

 

Find A Printer Who Leverages Cutting Edge Technology

When choosing a print partner, you want to make sure that they’re leveraging cutting edge technology and all of their equipment is new and up to date. If your print partner is using printers that are 5 years old, you’re going to be missing out on recent advancements, and your documents aren’t going to look as polished as you want them to.

Bottom line, is if your printer isn’t using the newest and best technologies, they’re not going to be able to deliver the highest quality print jobs. When you’re interviewing potential print partners, ask them what printers and programs they’re using, why they chose them and when the last time they upgraded all of their machines and systems was. Do your research and find out what technologies are the most effective for the type of print job you need, and make sure that your print partner is using it before you make a commitment.

 

Hire Someone With Experience Printing Exactly What You Need

There are numerous types of print jobs, from business cards to saddle stitch booklets, and each potentially requires different programs, machines and level of expertise. Before you decide on a print partner, you want to make sure that they have extensive experience in printing the types of documents and collateral that you’ll be needing.

Ask your potential print partner to show you samples of work from previous clients that is similar to the type of work that you would need done. Ideally, they should be able to provide at least 5 samples of work that’s on par for the type of project you need printed. When reviewing, look at the WORST of the samples and ask yourself “if my print job turned out like this, would I be happy?” If the answer is no, they don’t have the right experience and you should look for another partner.

 

Avoid Surprises And Get All Your Information Ahead Of Time

The classic mistake that people make when hiring a print partner (or any other contractor, for that matter) is just assessing their partner on their skills and not getting all of the information they need about the working relationship to make the right decision. Obviously, you need to hire someone who has the skills to complete your print jobs well. But there’s so much more to a working relationship than that.

Before you start working with a print partner, it’s a best practice to find out as much information about their work style and communication as possible. So, for example, what’s their process for rush jobs? Will you incur extra fees if you need a job turned around in 24 hours? What do you do if you need a print job completed on a weekend?

Details like that might seem insignificant during the hiring process, but asking these questions up front will save you from some potentially disappointing surprised down the road. The more information you can find out about what it’s going to be like to work someone, the better you’ll be able to make a decision on whether they’re the right fit for your needs.

 

Insist On An Online Ordering Portal

When you’re hiring a print partner, you want to make sure that they have an online ordering portal. Having an online ordering portal is incredibly convenient, will keep all of your communications organized and eliminates a significant amount of work on your part when sending over print jobs.

If you want to learn more about how an online ordering portal can make your life easier, be sure to check out our article on the benefits of an online ordering portal with your printer.

 

How Can We Help?

At Rogue Print and Mail, our proven track record of delivering the highest quality graphic design and print services to professionals speaks for itself. With fast turnaround times, industry specific templates and designs, an online portal available for any groups that wish to work with us to be able to store and manipulate their templates, and an in-house team to guide you in all of your branding, design and printing needs, Rogue Print and Mail is the preferred design and print partner for many hundreds of professionals across Australia.

To see the pricing on our print regular items, please click on this link.

Or for further information, please call us on 1300 65 85 00 or email us on quotes@rogueprintandmail.com.au

3 Questions To Ask Your Print Partner About Cross Media Marketing

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Cross media marketing is one of the hottest and most effective marketing strategies of 2017, and an important component of any successful cross media marketing campaign is print. And in order to print with the kind of volume and professionalism you need to support your campaign, you need to work with a print partner who can get the job done.

But how do you determine whether a potential partner is right to manage the print side of your cross media marketing campaigns? Here are three questions to ask your print partner about cross media marketing that will help you make an informed decision on whether they’re the right partner for you:

 

Question #1: What’s Your Experience With Cross Media Marketing Campaigns?

When choosing a print partner, you always want to work with a company that has a wide breadth of experience in managing and print collateral for cross media marketing campaigns. It’s imperative that your print partner understands the overall scope of the campaign, how print ties into each channel, and how print contributes to the overall goals and KPIs of the campaign.

Ask your print partner to see examples from previous cross media marketing campaigns. Ask deeper marketing questions to get a sense of their overall marketing knowledge. If possible, read reviews or connect directly with past cross media marketing clients to get a sense of what it will be like to partner with them on a campaign.

 

Question #2: Do You Use Variable Data Printing?

If you’re considering a print partner for your cross media marketing campaign, this question should be a non-negotiable. Variable data printing (VDP), which is a form of printing that allows different elements like text and graphics to change from piece to piece without slowing down the printing process, is a critical method for cross media marketing campaigns. By leveraging VDP, print partners are able to personalise each piece of printed collateral, and this personalisation is key to cross media marketing campaign success; unique user information like PURLs can easily be personalised for each customer, allowing you to track your success.

Ask about your partner’s print methods and make sure variable data printing is an option.

 

Question #3: Why Should I Choose You As My Cross Media Marketing Partner?

The last question you should ask your potential partner is “why should I choose you?” You want to make sure you choose a print partner that brings what you need to the table. Maybe they have additional services, like a graphic design or analytics team, that can help support your campaign. Maybe they have extensive experience running cross media marketing campaigns within your niche or industry. Maybe they have unique insights into ways to tie print into your overall campaign strategy. Whatever the case may be, your print partner should be able to make a strong case as to why they’re the best company for the job – and why you should choose them over the competition.

Before choosing a print partner for your cross media marketing campaigns, it’s important you vet out your potential partner and ensure they’re the right person for the job. With these three questions, you’ll be able to spark the conversations necessary to make the best decision for your business and choose a print partner that will help catapult your cross media marketing campaign to success.

 

How Can We Help?

At Rogue Print and Mail, our proven track record of delivering the highest quality graphic design and print services to professionals speaks for itself. With fast turnaround times, industry specific templates and designs, an online portal available for any groups that wish to work with us to be able to store and manipulate their templates, and an in-house team to guide you in all of your branding, design and printing needs, Rogue Print and Mail is the preferred design and print partner for many hundreds of professionals across Australia.  

I sincerely hope that you found this information valuable.  For advice on effective branding, design and cross media marketing, please don’t hesitate to call me on 1300 65 85 00 or email me at paul.stenhouse@rogueprintandmail.com.au  to arrange an obligation free 10 minute discussion with a member of our expert team.