Choosing a Journal or Book Printer

Choosing a Journal or Book Printer


Hi there. I am John Bond from Riverwinds Consulting
and this is Publishing Defined. Today I am going to talk about choosing a
book or journal printer. While the world assuredly is going digital,
print has remained part of the necessary offerings for many publishing companies. Choosing the right partner can save money,
ensure proper time to market, and guarantee quality. Here are six tips for choosing a book or journal
printer. First, when you consider potential partners,
look national versus those just in your backyard. Be open minded to any national firm whether
you can visit them on a regular basis or not. Other than an initial visit, there should
be almost no reason to visit your printer a lot. Press approvals are a thing of the past in
almost all circumstances. Also, look for printers that do a lot of the
business in the run size that you are working in. Don’t choose a short run printer to do a
long run publication, and vice versa. Second, only consider printers were the focus
of their business is on books or journals. Commercial printers might be able to do the
work, but a specialist is needed in this competitive market. They need to come to you with ways to save
money or change processes during your relationship and working with a recognized firm should
ensure this. Third, when you go out for bid, be open to
small changes in specs that might lower prices due to a company’s particular equipment. Let bidders know that changes to trim size,
color usage, binding, and other factors would be considered, in addition to your original
specs. Fourth, look closely at paper costs and talk
to the printers on how to ensure the best possible price without sacrificing quality
or your vision of the publication. Spend as much time talking about paper, including
house stocks, as you do talking about press costs. Fifth, for journals, dive deeply into postage
costs. Depending on the run length, talk about co-mailing
and potential cost savings. For finalists in your bidding process, you
may want to consider taking your mailing list and having an analysis done on projected postal
costs. Where the printer is located regionally will
definitely affect costs, plus or minus. Also look at the shipping costs for bulk mailing
to a convention or to your offices. Spend almost as much time understanding postal
costs as you do looking at printing and paper costs. For books, consider the final book weight
to determine how it will affect shipping costs to customers. Sixth, create a great request for proposal
and ensure all aspects of the printing operations are covered. Send the RFP to qualified potential partners,
hopefully at least five. With the resulting proposals from the printers,
block out time to analyze them side by side very closely. Don’t just look at the bottom number. Call the bidders up and ask them a ton of
questions. At the end of the day, choose a partner and
not just low bidder. On time delivery and quality work count are
obviously crucial. Well that’s it. I’ve released a new eBook called, “The
Request for Proposal in Publishing: Managing the RFP Process.” It is a short, focused guide to this essential
business task that associations or societies use to find potential publishing partners. See the link in the notes below for more information
on the book or how to purchase it. Hit the Like button below if you enjoyed this
video. Please subscribe to my YouTube channel or
click on the playlist to see more videos about choosing a printer. And make comments below or email me with questions. Thank so much and take care.

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