Thursday, 19 November 2015

Advertise your business professionally for £5 a year? Its not possible is it?

Yes it is!!

This post is unashamedly commercial, my apologies for this but I believe if you are not doing these things with your business you are missing a huge opportunity to promote your business in a very cost effective way.

There are some promotional products out there that will put your name in front of your clients for every second of every day of the year. 

They are cheap, don't require a huge amount of effort on your part and they are a tangible product...not some form of digital marketing or social media advertising that lasts two minutes.

So what are these magical products?

Desk pads & wall planners. 

Every year I print my own wall planners & desk pads, my clients love them. They rely on them everyday.

When I visit them through the year I see them using the wall planners to record everyone’s holidays or shift patterns and see my name on their office wall. 

The desk pads are even better, forming a part of their working environment on their desks (obviously!). Your name, telephone number & email address are in front of them every second of every day of the year.

Here is the commercial bit!!

What's the cost? 

To keep the cost down we use standard templates so you simply supply us with your logo and we incorporate it into your template. Your name is clearly displayed. 

Wall planners are A1 in size. 100 will cost you £2.50 each, 200 will be £1.80 each. This includes proofing, printing in full colour on high quality paper, folding to A4 and delivery to one UK address.

For the desk pads we again use standard templates.

100 pads will cost you £2.95 each. 200 pads will cost you £2.25 each. This includes, proofing, printing in full colour on 100g uncoated paper. The pads are glued in pads of 25 sheets and are delivered to one address in the UK.

So the cost for 100 wall planners and 100 desk pads is £5.45, near enough the same price as a cheap bottle of wine or box of chocolates!!

However, if you order wall planners and desk pads together at the same time that cost comes down to £5.00 for 100 of each item and £3.70 for 200 of each item.

To get this special price you need to place your order by 30th November. Supplying your artwork (your logo) and payment by this day. Delivery will be week 14th December. Giving you and your sales team plenty of time to distribute them.

What other forms of advertising puts your name in front of your customers every second of every day of the year? There is no other method of advertising that is as cheap and effective as this.

Contact me via email at or call 07847 415543 to place your order.

P.S. You can order more than 200, unit prices reduce significantly for larger quantities

P.P.S. I can help you with lots more. I specialise in reducing your printing and marketing costs, giving you more bang for your buck.

Friday, 6 November 2015

Am I an Old Fart?

I went to the Burnley Bonfire night yesterday, my first time at an organised event for many years, mainly to watch the firework display but also to partake in the traditional fare on bonfire evening.
I was looking forwards the Treacle Toffee, Parkin, Hot Baked Potatoes (so hot from the fire they were black), black peas & meat pie, toffee apples, hot pot & red cabbage. All the things I ate at bonfire nights for many years. 
You can imagine my disappointment when all there was on offer were burgers, fried chicken, chips, greasy doughnuts & candy floss interspersed with concessions selling light sabres. It felt more like Blackpool than Burnley.
It was also raining, freezing cold and muddy. The fire was well, a fire, but Health & Safety means you can't get within 5o yards of it, so you can't even feel that warm glow to heat you up!
The noise from funfair (wtf), blared out in the background and I began to wonder what I was doing there. This wasn't Bonfire night as I remember. 
But then the main event started. The firework display. It was worth the wait, the cold and rain. It was a truly spectacular show, which lit up the sky.
Far far better than the often disappointing fireworks you used to buy from the newsagent. Catherine wheels that didn't go around. Traffic lights that didn't change colours and rockets in a milk bottle that could go anywhere.
After the 20 minute firework display was over, everyone applauded and I was left thinking am I an old fart? Life changes and we are all victims of progress, yes the traditional part of bonfire night I remember has gone, but boy those fireworks were bloody brilliant and I can't wait to go back next year!
We all are guilty of saying "things were better when I was younger" but most of the time that isn't true and most things are better now than they were in the past. We should all embrace change and the benefits of technology, better production techniques but not forget our heritage and past.  

Friday, 16 October 2015

7 Top Tips for Buying your Print

Never get too hung up about quality and service. These should be a given nowadays. Modern production techniques should ensure the quality is consistently excellent. If you are experiencing issues with either of these basic requirements with your current printer then you need to be searching for a new supplier.


If you single source your printing, as a number of our clients do, always discuss with us alternative methods of production. Only a print management organisation can offer this service. Our expertise ensures that your job specification will be matched to a supplier who specialises in that type of work. This will give you the peace of mind that all options have been considered. Do this for every print job you place.


Talk to your supplier before the artwork is started and you will reap the benefits later. We can offer advice on alternative methods of production at this stage which may not be considered by the creative team producing your artwork.
For example if your job is being mailed out we can offer advice on how to save money on your postage. Our experience and knowledge can save you significant amounts of money, maybe allowing you to improve the specification of your print and keeping in budget.


Delivery should be included in the price of any quote you get. However there are times when you it maybe cost effective for you to print more of the job and store in our managed warehouse. Conversely it may be worthwhile looking at printing your documents digitally on demand as and when you need them.


Always make sure you have control over your artwork. We can help in the design and creative work needed to produce your print, working with experienced graphic designers who can provide differing levels of creativity to suit your budget.


We manage your branding by ensuring colour consistency across the different print processes. Having multiple suppliers for Litho, Digital & Large Format is fraught with danger in terms of brand management. We ensure our suppliers have the colour management standard ISO 12647-2. This means colour is consistent across the whole range of print services we provide.


You may also want a supplier who can provide you with web design, email creation, copywriting, cross media production, blog writing, social media and anything else to do with digital marketing.

For for information on the service we provide visit or call me on 0333 012 4867

Thursday, 24 September 2015

How can I help?

How can I solve your problem?
You have probably heard all this before from your favoured Print Salesman.
“We aren’t like other printers…. we have a super duper new press…. We’ve just invested in digital and the quality is great…we are very competitive…. We can also do large format…our service is second to none”

I’ve personally been guilty of this in the past, even worse is telling your sales team to push these benefits with clients especially when you have a shiny new piece of equipment to fill.

The problem is that customers don’t want to know how what kit you have; they want a solution to their problems. It’s like the old question, “why do people buy drills?” Not because they want a shiny new drill, it’s because they want to make a hole in a wall!!

Your typical print provider is all about selling his capacity and you can understand why. Those printing presses need filling so they can pay a few bills and wages, but the customer couldn’t care less all they want is a solution to their problem.

How can I help?

Typically your print salesperson will not ask this very simple question. The solution to your problem might be something completely off the wall rather than the perceived problems of cheaper prices, extended credit or better service, unless they asks you this question he cant solve your problems.

The leaflet you are printing might be for a high speed production line and you want supplying in a new way to improve the supply chain. It might be a tag for your product worth hundreds of pounds that’s needed on an unusual material. You may need a solution for managing the print for the chain of shops you own. In my experience the problems are not just about getting a better price, although that is always a bonus.

Unfortunately your typical print provider can’t always do this. The problem is that every printer provider in the UK is a specialist in producing a certain type of product. They are niche producers of print. They invest in equipment that is suited to their client base, but nobody can manufacture every piece of print. It’s just not possible.

So if you order your catalogue in the tens of thousands one year and want to reduce the quantity and produce an interactive online version of your catalogue the following year, it’s unlikely the print provider you used last year can do this for you this year.

You probably order all the letterheads and business cards through the same print provider who prints your company brochures.  The chances are you are paying too much, as they aren’t using the most efficient kit to produce your job, as they will invariably try to print the job in house.

What is the solution?

The solution is to work with a Print & Marketing Specialist. The right person will act as a resource for your business, using their considerable knowledge of the process to outsource your businesses communications. They will use best of breed suppliers who have all the latest equipment with quality; environmental management & data compliance systems ensure your print is produced efficiently.

There are many other advantages of working with a dedicated professional. Your brand is managed in a more coherent way. You will spend more of your time on productive work rather than chasing a myriad of suppliers and your digital marketing, social media & printed matter will have a common strategy.

Ian Crow
Print & Marketing Consultant
Mobile 0333 012 4867

Coming soon “The Seven Deadly Sins of Print Buying”