Tuesday, April 26, 2022

10 Direct Mail Myths Debunked

Myths can sidetrack your marketing efforts and keep you spinning your wheels. Be on the lookout for these common misconceptions regarding direct mail.

Direct Mail Myths Debunked

1. Direct Mail is Dead.

Direct mail is still a driving force behind a successful business.

As more companies look to online communication, you have a better chance of standing out in the mailbox. In addition, direct mail paves the way for the recipient to fully engage with your content on their schedule instead of being a quick (and annoying) interruption to their day.

2. Online Ads Are Better than Direct Mail.

Online ads indeed help businesses succeed, but what is also true is that direct mail helps drive traffic to your online site. Without direct mail, people tend to click away. Direct mail is permanent and begs for attention in the palm of your hand.

3. You Can’t Target the Right People with Direct Mail.

It is even easier to target the right customers with the new lists and technology. You can decide what ages you want to reach, the location of homes, gender, household income, and even if they typically respond to direct mail.

4. You Can’t Track Direct Mail.

You can track direct mail in a variety of ways.

One way is to have a designated email or phone line that only goes to that direct mail campaign. Or, offer a specific coupon or coupon code that corresponds with your campaign. You can even get personal with personalized URLs or PURLs that provide a unique web address for each recipient’s direct mail piece.

5. There Isn’t Enough Room to Tell Your Story in Direct Mail.

The great thing is that you can work together with your online presence by including a QR code, a website, or an email.

You can get your main point across in your direct mail piece and then continue to tell the whole story online. Or you can use a beautifully designed brochure that offers more room for print. Not only that, but people can hang onto it much longer, and they can easily pass it to a friend.

6. Email is More Effective than Direct Mail.

Did you know that 80% of direct mail recipients take immediate action on the mail they receive versus 45% of email recipients? Those statistics are powerful when evaluating the efficacy of direct mail.

7. Young People Don’t Respond to Direct Mail.

Studies have shown that 95% of 18- to 29-year-olds respond positively to direct mail. That’s a great way to reach those used to being bombarded by online ads.

8. Direct Mail is Forgettable.

Direct mail yields a 70% higher recall rate than other advertising, showing how memorable this is for customers.

The fact that they need to tangibly hold the item before tossing it shows that the message sticks in their heads easier than just clicking away.

9. I Only Need to Advertise Online.

You need both digital marketing and direct mail.

According to IWCO Direct, cross-channel marketing can increase your response rates by 35%. The important thing is that it works together to serve your purpose: increased sales.

10. Email Marketing Works Better Than Direct Mail.

Forbes states that direct mail achieves a 4.4% response rate, compared to 0.12% for email, proving that direct mail is essential in your marketing efforts.

If you need a boost in your direct mail efforts, we are here to help. We will produce gorgeous marketing materials that will be noticed and remembered. Check out our website today!  www.printitincolor.com 

Friday, April 22, 2022

Bleed and Crop Marks: What Do They Mean For You?

If you have worked with a printing firm, you have probably heard the words “bleeds” and “crop marks” come up before. But what does that actually mean to you, the print buyer?

What are Crop Marks?

Crop marks tell the printer where to cut the paper, especially if it’s a finished product, such as a business card or postcard. But there are crop marks on pages for a booklet as well sometimes.

If you look at a proof of your project, you will probably see these tiny lines that go horizontally and vertically, giving the margins for your project to be cut down. All crop marks in the USA should be either one-eighth or one-quarter inch. Since projects are printed on oversized paper with bleeds, these tick marks help guide printers when trimming the print job down to the final size.

What is a Bleed?

A bleed is when the color or text goes off of the page, and the cut will trim excess color off of it.

A bleed makes for a complete look as the artwork typically goes (or “bleeds”) off the page. There are two types of bleeds: full bleed and partial bleed. A full bleed is when all the artwork goes off the page, whereas a partial bleed is when only some of the artwork goes off the edge.

How to Use Crop Marks and Bleed Marks

These two tools ensure that you get a quality printed product containing all the words and artwork you desire. To have your project print-ready, you need to use crop marks so that bleeds can be done correctly.

When you save your project, you will want to use a PDF so that it remains permanent and the crop marks are solidified. This ensures your project will come out as you planned.

A PDF document contains embedded fonts, so the printer won’t have issues with what you laid out. One of the most common issues related to printing is fonts that are contained within the document.

For example, they might be incompatible versions, corrupted fonts, or missing fonts. Font issues tend to occur when using programs such as Illustrator or Adobe InDesign. A PDF eliminates these types of issues because all your design elements are embedded within the file.

No matter what your project is, we are here to help. If you aren’t sure how to create a PDF, let us help you. We want to partner with you to get successful print project results. Visit our website to learn more - we even have templates you can download at https://www.printitincolor.com/help-center/layout-templates/ 

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Creating a Successful Experience for Your Remote Team

According to a recent global study by Logitech, more than 43% of employees are expected to work from home part or full time. Certainly, hybrid work environments are here to stay. And with the increase in remote workers, a smart balance of collaboration is critical. So, what does that look like?

7 Tips for Creating Successful Remote Teams

1. Space

Remote workers will need a comfortable space at home to work in, so you may need to budget for a new desk and chair for their homes and/or be clear in your expectations of what you provide and what the employee will be responsible for.

2. Workflow

You will need to make sure you are using efficient workflow and task management tools so that everyone is on the same page.

For example, you could use Workzone, Trello, Jira, or others just as effective. Then everyone will know when things are due and when someone is done with a project.

3. Daily Communication

Include remote workers in your daily communication.

They might feel isolated and alone if they are used to the banter and camaraderie of the office. Make sure you keep the lines of communication open so they can ask questions, provide information, and be a part of planning for different events and projects.

4. Time

Ensure employees know when their start and stop times are so that they don’t go over their allotted time, costing you money if they are paid by the hour.

Not only that, but you don’t want your employees to get burned out. Most people say this is the hardest part of working at home--knowing when to quit for the day. Many people forget the time and focus on their projects.

5. Structure

Structure is a critical step in making remote work successful.

Although working at home is more flexible, things can go array without structure. You will need to have standards and specific goals for remote workers, so they know what is expected of them. If you expect them to work 9 to 5, make sure they know that. Otherwise, they may think it’s okay to start at noon as long as they get their hours in.

6. IT Safety

Recently, the US Secret Service issued an alert warning of fraudulent emails related to Covid-19 that contain malicious attachments.

This is a good reminder to practice the same standard of privacy and protection of information no matter where your team is working.

7. Internet Usage

Remember that while employees are working at home, their spouses and children might also be using the Internet.

This means they may have a slower connection and might need to be taught how to best deal with this. Consider setting up additional connections for employees or advising them on connecting and disconnecting various devices when not in use.

We can all agree that remote working is here to stay for many people, and for others, we never know what the future holds. With that said, it’s nice to know we are here for each other. Print It! is here to take the weight off your shoulders when it comes to professional printing. We are your partner when it comes to printing high-quality designs and styles. Need something specific? Check out our website today - www.PrintitinColor.com!

Friday, April 15, 2022

Direct Mail is Not Failing. Here's Why.

Direct mail is king in advertising.

It’s direct, in your hands, and grabs attention right away. There’s no cold calling, knocking on doors, or guessing if your direct mail made into your customers’ hands.

In a 2020 consumer survey, 71% of people reported reading the ads that come in the mail. And 54% say that direct mail ads motivated them to try a new business.

The Direct Mail Comeback

Postcards are an excellent example of direct mail that has made a comeback in the last few years due to the pandemic leaving people at home more.

Not leaving their homes meant people weren’t out searching for a better deal. Instead, they were at home, opening their mail and seeing great offers sent directly to them. Consumers learned that direct mail is a great starting point for their shopping.

The Personal Touch of Direct Mail

Direct mail has the advantage of personalization by putting the recipient’s name on it.

This connection is better than a TV commercial or online ad because readers know the offer is intended directly for them. Right now, there are programs designed to target just the right market so that your return on investment is spot on. You can pick people of the correct ages and genders for your product and tailor it to people who typically respond well to postcards and other direct mail.

During the pandemic, consumers were directed with QR codes to download menus everywhere. And when you add QR codes to direct mail, it adds a little more social interaction with the mail. It gets people to take the next step and download your information, and it works wonders.

The Rise of Digital Fatigue

Digital fatigue is real and prevalent.

In fact, 75% of consumers report being overwhelmed by the number of digital ads they see daily. This is good news for direct mail marketing because it won’t tire out the consumer with ads blinking in front of their faces. Instead, it presents a calm way to ask for their business.

Direct mail has a median ROI rate of 29%, which is only 1% behind social media. It’s proof that direct mail is still in the running, according to Neil Patel. “Like hot baths and candlelit dinners, direct mail has become romanticized in our culture,” Patel says. Direct mail campaigns let people know you want their business specifically, instead of sending out a broad email blast or digital ad.

According to the US Postal Service, 54% of people surveyed tried a new product or business in a six-month period in 2020 because they received a mail piece. That’s a great opportunity that many businesses are missing when they only focus on online ads.

Direct mail will always remain important to the business world, whether you use a postcard, brochure, or a letter directed to a specific type of person. We at Print It! are here to help you in your efforts to run a direct mail campaign. Give us a call or check us out today at https://www.printitincolor.com/printing/postcards/!

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

How to Become a Mentor

A mentor can genuinely help another person achieve success.

If you have been in the business world for a while and are a trusted leader, you might be a great candidate for being a mentor. 

What is a Mentor?

First of all, let’s start by talking about what a mentor is.

A mentor offers insight into business, as they have gleaned information through experience and education. You could mentor a recent graduate or someone who may be new to your particular business.

Whatever you aspire to help a person with, here are a few tips to get you headed in the right direction.


You will want to determine what the mentee wants to get out of the mentorship.

Do they need a one-time talk, or do they want an ongoing, weekly, or monthly meeting? Will you meet for coffee or in your office, and for how long?


Remember that even though you provide advice and direction based on your expertise, the mentee needs to be free to make their own decisions.

Don’t be offended if they do something you wouldn’t do. Maybe it will work out, or maybe they will learn the hard way. Don’t get discouraged. Your work is still valuable.


How will you two determine if the sessions are valuable and doing what they should be doing?

If your work has a formal program for a mentorship, fill out those papers and use them as a guide. If not, talk openly with the mentee about how often you two should evaluate the relationship.

Will you have an open discussion once every three months? Or will you each write an evaluation to give each other every month? Determine how often you think you need to evaluate the mentorship, then specify how to do it (written or verbal).


Develop clear boundaries so that it stays professional.

You might want to ask the mentee only to contact you at work rather than blowing up your phone during your free time.


Be honest with the mentee, rather than tip-toeing around particular topics.

If you feel strongly about specific topics, offer constructive criticism so they can improve in those areas. Don’t be afraid to tell them honestly if you see them making classic mistakes. Let your experience be your guide.


Make sure you balance your advice with listening.

Many times, mentors think they are only there to provide direction. However, you are also there to listen. You are not to fix problems for them; rather, you are to answer their questions and lead them in a particular direction.

Be Honest.

Don’t be afraid to talk about your failures.

Sure, we like to talk about successes, but what we learned from failures is just as valuable.

Let your mentee know you aren’t perfect, but you learn from things that don’t go as planned. This should allow the mentee to open up about their shortcomings and ask honest questions.

Role Model.

Be a positive role model on the way to act in the office, how you answer emails, and how you treat your mentee. Be professional and talk about positive things regarding the business.

Now that you know how to be a mentor, we want to be here for you as a mentor in the printing world. There are so many options to be considered, and we are here to help you fine-tune your marketing materials. Check us out today!

Friday, April 8, 2022

Get Organized with Kanban Method Basics

Ever feel overwhelmed by your to-do list? The Kanban method might help.

Kanban comes from the Japanese word that translates into ‘visual signal,’ to convert work tasks into a visual format and limit the number of tasks concurrently being worked on while increasing transparency and speed.

Kanban takes a group-focused approach and encourages everyone on the team to be a leader. Here’s how it works.

Kanban Boards

Kanban boards are the format of which kanban is worked off.

These boards can be virtual or physical, and they consist of columns that break the workload up into sections. For example, you can have to-do, in-progress, and done columns. 

Within the columns, there are cards. The cards represent each work item. They move from column to column, left to right, beginning from the backlog (a queue of work to be done) to the finished stage.  

Kanban boards are designed to help limit work in progress, which helps decrease lead time.

Kanban Cards

Kanban cards provide all the necessary information, including a title, description, owner, due date, time logged, and workflow stage.

The history and information are updated as the card progresses through the workflow, increasing transparency. 

The cards (or tasks to complete) can generate from customer-based feedback or from within the company at meetings. All team members should be empowered to create a card. 

The time it takes to complete each card should be calculated. You don’t want a card to resemble every minute task, but you also don’t want the card to take two weeks to complete. The optimal time for each card is about one day or 6-8 hours. 

Kanban Work In Progress Limits

By enforcing work in progress limits, thereby limiting the amount of work your team can do at once, you’ll decrease your lead time.

This is because multitasking is inefficient, and time is wasted by switching between various projects. Enforcing work in progress limits helps foster a healthy workplace because your employees won’t be overwhelmed. Quality will increase because your employees can focus on one to two tasks at a time. Customers will be happy because of the high quality. 

Work in progress limits helps your team members say no, which may be challenging for some. When there isn’t any space on the kanban board to take on more work, saying no becomes easier, and an explanation backs it up. 

The recommended work in progress limit for your entire kanban board, according to Agile Coach Max Rehkopf, should be your team size (the number of people contributing on the kanban board) multiplied by one and a half or two. The recommended work in progress limit for each column is the number of people that look after each column multiplied by two. 

Pinpoint Bottlenecks

Kanban boards help you pinpoint bottleneck points in the workflow.

Bottleneck effects often arise from projects waiting on those with unique skill sets held by only a few team members. To help decrease bottlenecks, prioritize a sharing of skill sets. In this case, if there is a backup in the workflow, other team members can jump in to help. 

Getting Started

When first incorporating a kanban board into your workplace, it’s important to remember it’s not meant to revolutionize the workplace but rather provide a methodology to the current roles and responsibilities. 

Begin with a physical kanban board in a prominent location. Use sharpies, pens, sticky notes, etc., to put it together. This kanban board will serve as a conversation starter regarding how you work, write cards, and move through your work. These conversations lead to changes in the workflow. Once the company and employees understand the workflow, upgrade to a digital platform like Jira or Trello. This is helpful because you can share the workflow with people outside of your location. 

Kanban is a helpful visualization tool to help speed up the workflow process at your business by decreasing work in progress and providing a method to your work. Need to organize your print marketing? We can help!

Tuesday, April 5, 2022

6 Reasons Why You Need a Vacation

Taking time off can be difficult, especially if you fear things might stall or fall apart without you there.

But rest, and the time to unplug and recharge, are necessary indulgences.

Here are six reasons why vacations are necessary for being healthy and successful.

1. Production

There are many reasons to take time off. It makes you more productive to have time away from the grind. When you return, you feel refreshed and can spend those fresh eyes on sprucing up your marketing efforts or other things that need updating.

2. Physical Health

“People who take vacations have lower stress, less risk of heart disease, a better outlook on life, and more motivation to achieve goals,” according to Allina Health.

It’s a great way to stay healthy and vibrant. Just check out these statistics:

3. Mental Health

Taking time off from work is also a great way to boost your mental health.

Neuroscientists have found that “chronic exposure to stress can alter your brain structure and bring on anxiety and depression.” Give your brain a break by taking time off, in which you turn off your phone and social media. It will help heal your mind when it’s on vacation.

4. Reduce Burnout

It goes without saying that vacations help reduce burnout.

When you have time to step away and reflect, you can be more creative when you return. And when you are refreshed, you’re often filled with new, innovative ideas for your business.

5. Improve Relationships

Relationships benefit from vacations as well.

Most marriages are happier when there are mini-vacations and large vacations. Just time alone with your loved ones makes families thrive and can trickle down into one’s performance at work.

6. Reduce Stress

A study released by the American Psychological Association concluded that time off helps reduce stress because it removes people from the activities and environments that they associate with anxiety.

If you can’t take a vacation right away, take little breaks in nature. Take your lunch break outside in the sunshine. Or take a walk after work with a loved one. Take the long way home through a park, get out and walk a trail. But be sure to plan a real vacation soon to help you be the best version of yourself.

When it comes to your print marketing, plan to leave the stress to us!

Friday, April 1, 2022

The Benefits of Banners

A banner is a large piece of fabric or flag used to advertise a business by displaying a slogan, logo, symbol, or promotional offer. It is one of the oldest forms of advertising, and it is still around today because it is low cost and effective.

Benefits of Banners

Banners have a wide array of benefits. Below is just the tip of the iceberg.

  • Visibility. Banners are highly noticeable. Pair it with an eye-catching design, and it’ll be hard to miss.

  • Positive response. Unlike t.v. or radio commercials where the audience can become quickly tired of the advertisement and eventually irritated, banners don’t have that problem. The audience can choose to look at the banner or not. Therefore, the chances of them becoming annoyed by it are lower than alternative forms of advertising.

  • Cost-effective. Compared to t.v. commercials or media advertising, banners are much more cost-effective. In advertising, you’re going to want to spend as little as possible to generate the most sales. Banners are a good intersection.

  • Reusable. If you make sure to use durable, high-quality inks, your banners should be reusable time and time again. This is perfect for local events, trade shows, and social gatherings. The banner’s reusability adds to its cost-effectiveness.

  • Easy. Getting banners printed is usually just a call away!

Perhaps one of the greatest benefits of banners is their vast customizability.

Ways to Customize Banners

No two banners are alike because they are customizable.

  • Size. Banners come in various sizes ranging from 2’ wide by 4’ high to 6’ wide by 30’ high. The standard size is 6′ wide x 3′ high. The size you end up choosing largely depends on where you’re placing your banner.

  • Portrayal. Banners can come single or double-sided. If you’re placing your banner against a brick wall, it’s probably best to go with the single side. But, if your banner will have both sides exposed, then it’s best to go double-sided.

  • Material. Banners can come in matte, gloss, fabric, mesh, or vinyl, depending on your printer. The material you choose often depends on the placement of your banner. For example, if the banner is outside and needs to survive the weather, it is best to choose more durable options.

  • Finishing. Depending on how you want to hang your banner, you can choose grommets, hems, or pole pockets. Grommets are the holes on the outside of the banner for it to hang. Usually, you can select the material of your grommets, such as brass, stainless steel, or plastic.

  • Viewing distance. Depending on your printing company, the quality of the design can be adjusted based on how close-up people will be viewing your poster. If they’re only going to be seeing it from far away, there’s no point in wasting money on a detailed design.

  • Design. The banner’s design is highly customizable, and it’s what makes your banner unique and stand out. Using excellent design skills helps draw in customers’ attention. Try incorporating graphics, a memorable logo, complementing color schemes, patterns, and your unique selling proposition. A unique selling proposition states why customers should buy from your business over your competitors.

Banners are the perfect addition to your advertising campaign for customizability, effectiveness, and price!  Need help with your next banner - give us a call at 864-882-3609 or check us out at https://www.printitincolor.com/printing/banners/