Should I Print Professionally Or Print It Myself?

Consider who your audience is and what they would think if they received a printed piece that is more casual versus more professional. If your business is an art gallery or has an upscale clientele, it may be better to use a professional printer. On the other hand, a taco shop that has a temporary, over-the-counter promotion using flyers may not require a professional printer. Also, if you are printing small quantities of a hundred or less or if you need your prints quickly, a professional printer might not be the way to go. Set up time and costs are expensive for professional printers. Lastly, consider what your competitors are doing and try to do it better. As a consumer yourself, what would your expectations be?

Print quality has improved tremendously on the low-end and high-end of printing over the past five years. Expectations are now much higher than they were before. When you have the budget to do it professionally, you should definitely NOT do it yourself.

Why? Because professional printing offers so many options for paper quality, coating finishes, high resolution printing, colors and is more flexibility in cutting, folding, embossing, binding, and so on.

Find out what the strengths and limitations are on the equipment you're printing on and then design your marketing materials accordingly. Sometimes gradations in certain colors don't show up well on laser copy machines and you usually can't print to the edge of the paper. In addition, keep your designs simple and use strong messaging and headlines. Usually when you use powerful headlines and subheads on marketing pieces, readers don't notice the limitations of printing because they are captivated by the message. If you depend heavily on the visual aspect, more is riding on the print quality. Conclusion: Do-it-yourself print works better with a strong message.

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