Tag Archives: Printmonster

Let’s Do Business – Printmonster’s Experience!

Let’s Do Business – What Did We Think?

Let's Do Business

Planning for the Let’s Do Business event was a lengthy, but rewarding process. It involved our team coming together and thinking up of ideas that we could use for our event. After some long meetings and discussions, we had a plan put together. We were going to create a ‘Feed The Printmonster’ game which would coincide with our recent branding.

As we started to gather the resources required for our exhibition stands and game, we all had the same vision which contributed greatly to the outcome of the event. As the game started to take shape we were all pretty excited. Once the game was complete, our Printmonsters decided to test the game and we had a lot of fun feeding the Printmonster. With Let’s Do Business fast approaching, we became more and more excited to attend and we were amazed at how many people attended.

Arrival

Let's Do Business Event

Once we had arrived at Uttoxeter Racecourse, we started to set up our stand immediately. We carefully laid out each piece of our stand to make sure it looked fantastic with our game taking pride of place. Unfortunately, we did miss breakfast but we did manage to finish the stand just in time for the setup deadline.

We then got the chance to walk around and meet some of the other exhibitionists, which we thought was great! It gave us all the chance to get to know the other businesses before the Let’s Do Business event officially started. After having some interesting chats with the other exhibitors we were all ready for the event to start.

 Event Start

let's do business networking

Once the event had started, the delegates started visiting all the stands. It was incredible to see so many people there, we were told 700+ people had booked before the event and it turned out to be a fantastic 1000+ people. Luckily, Uttoxeter Racecourse was a brilliant venue and had more than enough room for everyone to spend time networking.  It was great to meet and chat with so many businesses and professionals and we thank everyone who came to have a chat with us.

The Let’s Do Business event enabled us all to learn a lot more about surrounding businesses, it also opened a few doors for a lot of people attending. There were a ton of great stands around us and it was even better to see everyone enjoying themselves whilst networking. If the atmosphere itself doesn’t convince anyone to attend next time, we sure will be recommending it to plenty of people who didn’t manage to attend.

On a sidenote,  we were very grateful for all of the brilliant feedback we got on our ‘Meet The Printmonsters’ artwork. We’re incredibly pleased that plenty of people gave positive feedback on the Printmonsters as we designed it to help you attach names to our business. You can definitely be sure to see more of these in the future. If you haven’t had the chance to see our Printmonster’s, you can find them all here >>>> http://www.printmonster.co.uk/team/

Drawing To The End Of Let’s Do Business

let's do business printmonster

Towards the end of Let’s Do Business, we got to have some great fun! One of these instances was thanks to Burton Albion C.T for giving us the chance to hold the incredible League 2 Cup!  We’d also like to say a massive thank you to Ed Sumner for performing some great magic around our stand, he certainly managed to wow a few people! We’d also like to say a big thank you to Christine Thomas for arranging for Ed to perform alongside us. If you’re interested in finding out a little more about these two wonderful people, you can find them by clicking on their names.

 Let’s Do Business Was Great Fun!!!

let's do business competitions

Altogether, the Let’s Do Business event was fantastic! It was great to see our stress balls go down well and we were very, very glad that we decided to attend. We will definitely be recommending this event for many months to come as it’s an event that nobody can afford to miss. It provided us all with the casual platform to interact with lots of great businesses and people from around our areas. We are incredibly grateful to all of those who came to have a chat with us on our stand! If any of you would like to connect with our team, you can find Anthony’s & Autumn’s LinkedIn profiles by clicking on their names.

And The Winner Is…

let's do business winner

Please join us in congratulating David Brown from Babcock Training in his recent win of our Let’s Do Business £100 restaurant voucher giveaway. We hope he enjoys his free meals when he redeems them and we wish him all the best. To everyone else who participated in the game, thank you so much for feeding our Printmonster, he was very hungry and is now very happy and full.

Special Thanks

Let's Do Business 2015Let's Do Business

Of course we’d like to say a massive thank you to the hosts of this amazing event. Staffordshire Chamber and Greater Birmingham Chamber really did put a fantastic event together and we look forward to seeing what other future events are heading our way! Thank you also to Uttoxeter Racecourse for providing us all with a fantastic venue on an incredibly beautiful day! We hope to see all of you at the next one.

 

 

Feed The Printmonster!

Prepare For Printmonster!

Greater Birmingham Chamber of Commerce

 

We’ll be attending a Let’s Do Business event this week on the 25th. It’s being hosted by both Greater Birmingham and Staffordshire Chamber of commerces. It will be held at the Uttoxeter RaceCourse and will open its doors to visitors at 10:00. We’ve got some big things planned for the event and we’re looking forward to networking with everyone attending. Only one week away now and we look forward to seeing you all there! Make sure to keep an eye out for any new details as we’ll be revealing more over the next week.

If you would like to get socially involved with our surprise you’re very welcome too, just simply use the following hashtags and we’ll be interacting all day! #FeedThePrintmonster & #LDB2015. We’ll also be live tweeting the event and making sure to keep everyone informed about how our event is going, we hope to see some of you take part.

If you’d like to find out more about this event, you can find more information here >>> http://bit.ly/Chamber-Event

chamber of commerce

Business Cards – What They Really Need To Say!

Make Your Business Cards Stand Out!

business cards

 

  1. Bland – If your business cards look similar to the other business cards out there, the chances are, you and your business won’t be remembered for long. People will remember a business card that’s colourful, unique, feels good and looks good. If you really want to make a brilliant first impression, you’ll need a business card design that has been professionally tailored to you. If you have the design skills, you could design them yourself. Alternatively, you could ask for the help from a graphic designer to help you inject personality into your business cards.
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  3. Stay True To Your Business – As mentioned above, business cards that stand out from the rest are brilliant. To stand out, you don’t need colourful colours, just something unique and eye catching. If you’re an accounting firm, you will not want something that is bright pink and yellow as it will just confuse people. An important step for your business cards is to make sure that your branding is aligned and your message is clear. The last thing you want is for someone to see your business cards and not have a clue what you do. Be clear, align your business with your business cards and stay true to your business and its values.
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  5. Hard To Read Fonts And Sizes – Remember, not all of us have perfect vision. People shouldn’t have to put their glasses on to read what’s on your business cards. Be considerate of those with poor sight and make your business cards as clear and easy to read as possible.
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  7. Poor Quality – There is nothing worse than handing over a business card that has been cheaply made with cheap materials. This will immediately convey to people that your business may be untrustworthy, unreliable and have poor products and service. That’s quite a big conclusion to make from one card, which is why it’s so important that your business cards look and feel fantastic. It will show people that you take pride in what you and your business has to offer.
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  9. No Social Media Icons – Does your business use social media? Yes? That’s brilliant! You should be including icons of the social media platforms on your business cards. You don’t need to input the link as it will take up too much room. If you just display which platforms you use, it will encourage people to search for your company on those platforms. If your business doesn’t use social media, you will not need to display the social media icons as it will confuse people when they try to find you.
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  11. Clutter – A business card isn’t there to pitch your business for you, neither is it there describe everything about your business. Business cards are great for giving people a brief introduction to your business and providing them with your contact information. Keep your business card design simple as it will help people to remember you.
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  13. Contact Information – Although we mentioned above about clutter, it is very important to make sure that all of your relevant contact information is displayed on your business cards. Make sure that your business cards don’t look cluttered, but also display all of your contact information clearly. Include your name, title, business, mobile and business phone numbers, email, website, etc. This provides people with a multitude of ways to get in touch and doesn’t limit individuals from trying to reach you.
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  15. Promise – If your business cards don’t have a catchy and memorable promise or tagline, you should include one. Going to all of the effort to make your business cards fantastic, then leaving out a tagline or promise can leave your business cards looking dull. Just imagine if brands like Mcdonalds and Nike didn’t have their iconic taglines or promises.
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  17. Oversized – It would be no use having business cards that don’t fit into wallets, pockets or business card holders. This is because people want to be able to store your business cards so they can go through them sometime in the future. Having an oversized business card may lead some people to leave your business card laying around somewhere.
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  19. Hand Them Out – And the most important step of them all, don’t forget to hand them out. Always keeps a supply of your business cards with you at all times, you never know when an opportunity may present itself to you.

Changes To The Printmonster Team!

We are sure you will want to join with us in sending our best wishes for future success to Gavin Obee who will be leaving Printmonster at the end of the month. We are sorry he has made the decision to move on; however we do understand his desire to pursue his career elsewhere.

Gavin has been an integral part of our team and an excellent ambassador for Printmonster. We’ve all thoroughly enjoyed working alongside him and we wish him all of the best and hope that he continues his success for many years to come. Gavin’s last day will be Friday 29th of this month.

Fortunately the other members of the team will be staying and therefore will be readily available to provide the excellent service which all of our customers have come to expect. You will appreciate that everything we do at Printmonster involves more than one person; it’s why we believe every member of our team is so important to the process.

Anthony McCormack has now joined us to continue Gavin’s good work. Anthony has spent the last 12 years working in the U.S and brings with him a wealth of experience and expertise in customer services.

You may not be aware we also have plans to introduce other new members into our team as we meet our objectives for expansion. It’s an exciting time for everyone here at Printmonster; please be assured that everything we do, we do with you, our customer, in mind.

If you would like to find out a little more about Anthony, you can contact him on:

Anthony@printmonster.co.uk
07939585472
01543462323

You can also reach out to him on his LinkedIn account which he’s currently excited about setting up! – http://bit.ly/AnthonyMcCormack

Save On Printing By Choosing The Right Options!

save on printing

 

Save On Printing – What Can You Do?

 

1. Direct Mail

This can help you save on printing if you make sure everything is correct and accurate. This will need to be done before you ask a printer to print your letters off for you. If you had a database of 1000 people and for 650 of those you had an outdated address, you could have wasted money on 650 letters that didn’t even arrive to the intended people. Maintaining and updating your database is vital to save on printing when it comes to mailing your customers.

 

2. Paper

Choosing the right paper stock for your project can make the difference between how much you can save on printing. If you’re looking to mail as mentioned above, you wouldn’t need expensive paper, you could use inexpensive and uncoated paper. It would be best asking your printer which paper would best suit your project. It’s always great to save on printing, but if you end up using low cost paper on a project that you want to look good, you won’t give your print the ‘wow’ factor. This would most likely lead your target audience to ignore your print.

3. Colour

Using colour will increase the price of your printed product/s. It can impact on how much you save on printing, but using colour for your print where necessary would make it more appealing to your target audience. If you needed business cards or posters, colour would be needed. This is because it would attract more people to your piece of print. If it didn’t have colour, chances are people wouldn’t even take a second look at it. On the other hand, when it comes to print products like newsletters and daily menus, they could easily have no colour which would help you save on printing prices.

4. Digital Printing

Digital printing has a higher cost per piece of printed material compared to lithographic, because of this you may assume that the lithographic printing process is cheaper to use and allow you to save on printing. The truth is, it might not be. Digital printing takes a lot less time to set up as the printing plates do not have to be made. Making the printing plates is a lengthy and expensive step within the lithographic printing process, which would be unsuitable for short print runs as the setup cost would make Lithographic more expensive. Digital printing would help you save on printing if you’re looking to run a short print job. It offers a faster turnaround, faster setups, variable data printing and much more. If you would like to learn a little more about digital printing, please click on the header.

5. Lithographic Printing

In short terms, the lithographic printing process is excellent for the longer print runs. It will help you save on printing when compared to running a long print run using the digital printing process. This is because each printed piece is more expensive using the digital printing process, but you have to take into account the time and money involved in the setup for the lithographic process, before you can make any judgements on which process offers you the better value for your project. Longer print runs on the lithographic printing process are perfect and will help you save on printing. This is because once the setup costs have been surpassed, it will be more expensive per piece of print from there on out for the digital process.

We hope these easy to follow tips help you select the right options for your project, whilst also helping you to save on printing.

VAT And Printing! Which Printed Products Have VAT?

VAT And Printing!

Printing And VAT!

 What is VAT?

(Value Added Tax) is charged on things like:

  • Sales – Sold goods and/or services
  • Commision
  • Items sold to your own staff, such as drinks or food
  • Business assets that are being sold
  • & More

There are three rates of VAT (Value Added Tax) and they are standard rate, reduced rate and zero rate.

Almost all services and goods are charged at standard rate, unless they are classed as reduced rate or zero rate.

Zero rate means that the goods and services are still vat-taxable, but you charge your customers 0% VAT (Value Added Tax), meaning they receive no charge.  Some examples of items that are zero rate are:

  • Comics
  • Colouring books (Children’s)
  • Bulletins
  • Brochures
  • Books

You can find out more about VAT (Value Added Tax) via the Gov.uk website here – https://www.gov.uk/vat-businesses/how-vat-works

Standard Rated Print Products:

  •  Business cards
  • Calendars
  • Compliment slips
  • Envelopes
  • Folders
  • Greetings cards
  • Labels
  • Letter headings
  • Menu cards
  • Postcards
  • Printed pictures
  • Stationery
  • Stickers
  • Vouchers

You can find all of the standard rated print products listed in this attached file >>> VATable Printed Products

Zero Rated Print Products:

  • Advertising leaflets
  • Antique books
  • Antique maps
  • Appointment cards
  • Booklets
  • Brochures
  • Catalogues
  • Leaflets
  • Magazines
  • Mail order catalogues
  • Maps
  • Orders of service
  • Recipe books
  • Travel brochures

You can find all of the zero rated print products here >>> VATable Printed Products

 VAT Confusion!

Sometimes it can get a little confusing in regards to which VAT rates printed products have attached to them. An example of this would be diaries.

Diaries that are completed are zero-rated, meaning no VAT is added onto the price. Whereas Unused diaries are listed as standard rated. There are quite a few printed products that have this confusing rule attached to them, but thankfully you can find them fully explained here >>> VATable Printed Products

Thank you for reading our blog post about printing and VAT, we hope we have helped you to understand which VAT rating each product has. But don’t worry, at Printmonster we always add this on to the final price, so you aren’t left stunned and confused.

Digital Printing & Lithographic! What’s The Difference?

What Are The Differences Between Lithographic & Digital Printing?

Lithographic Vs Digital Printing

What Are The Differences Between Lithographic & Digital Printing?

Digital Printing is excellent for short runs and eliminates the need to replace the printing plates. Compared to the more traditional methods of printing where the plates would need to be continually replaced. The digital printing process also enables printers to print straight from a digital image such as a PDF file. This reduces time by taking away the need for any mechanical steps to be taken in between, such as creating the printing plates.

On the other hand Lithographic Printing is brilliant for the longer print runs. The Lithographic printing process is based on the process of repelling water and oil. When the plate is exposed to a water and ink mixture, the parts that do not require ink will attract water whilst repelling any of the ink. The parts that do need the ink will attract the ink and repel the water.

What Are The Benefits Of The Lithographic & Digital Printing Processes?

 Digital Printing:

  • Due to the reduced number of mechanical processes required, digital printing offers faster turnaround times.
  • Shorter print runs are cheaper compared to running short print runs on lithographic printing equipment.
  • Easy customisation. The digital printing process enables easy changes to be made to the artwork without slowing down or stopping the printing process. This works especially well for personalised invitations, letters, cards, letterheads etc. For example, cards can be printed with different names and messages without impacting the production of the cards. This is referred to as Variable Data Printing.
  • Less waste, more consistency and there is no need to balance the ink and water levels resulting in less variations to the printing process.

Lithographic Printing:

  • High image quality.
  • Can be used on a range of surfaces such as wood, metal, leather, plastic and paper.
  • Cheaper costs for longer print runs, compared to producing long print runs using digital printing.
  • The quality and cost effectiveness of the process during longer print jobs is unmatched by the digital printing process.
  • Increased quality due to the modern offset presses computer-to-plate systems, compared to older computer-to-film systems.

How Do You Decide What’s Right For You?

  • Digital is the way forward if you’re looking for a fast turnaround for your print.
  • If you’re looking to print on an unusual printing surface, although the digital printing process does have options, the lithographic printing process still provides more flexibility.
  • Shorter runs? The digital printing process would be the best for you.
  • Longer runs? The lithographic printing process would work best for you.
  • If you’re looking to see what your print will look like before it’s printed, digital is the right choice for you. Also if you’re looking for easy customisation, digital would again be the best process for your needs.

CMYK Explained!

CMYK (Cyan – Magenta – Yellow – Black)

CMYK

CMYK is a color model in which all colors are described as a combination of  Cyan-Magenta-Yellow & Black.

RGB (Red-Green & Blue) & CMYK

CMYK is the colour model used for printing and is displayed on products like brochures and business cards. RGB (Red, Green & Blue) is the colour model used for devices such as a computer monitors or screens as they can only be viewed with natural or produced light.

 Additive Colour & Subtractive Colour:

The RGB colour model is based on projecting light to create colour, this is referred to as additive colour. When all three colours are combined (Red, green & blue), it creates white. This is the case for devices such as your computer and TV screens. This means that for the RGB colour model, black is the absence of all colour.

When CMY (Cyan, magenta & yellow) are mixed they create black. This is the case for most printed media such as business cards, brochures, posters, etc, as CMYK displays better on paper. The pigments of CMYK are printed in small dots and if you were to take a magnifying glass to the paper, you’d see that it would mainly be just a bunch of small dots spread out across the print. Opposed to the RGB colour model, for the CMYK colour model white is the absence of all colour.

Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator and InDesign all provide presets recommended for CMYK press setups which is very useful. You can also find out how to convert RGB to CMYK very easily with a quick internet search.

In conclusion, whenever you are designing for print, make sure that it’s in the CMYK colour model. Otherwise the final printed product will not look as it did when it was being displayed in RGB on your computer screen.

Why Does K Stand For Black?

This may sound like a very simple thing to solve with a quick Google search, but the actual answer has an element of the unknown to it. There are two common answers for why K stands for Black and here they are:

1. Wikipedia’s description of why K is Black is “The “K” in CMYK stands for key because in four-color printing, cyan, magenta, and yellow printing plates are carefully keyed, or aligned, with the key of the black key plate.” This is because the black plate in four-colour printing pushes the contrast and creates detail.

2. The second answer that some will give you is that it was to prevent blue being easily confused with the B for black term. This answer is considered a myth, but there is some logical reasoning behind why printers would change B to K because of the confusion between blue and black.  The reasoning behind this is if the press was loaded with blue ink at the end of the day, the entire job would have to be started over. Which, as you can imagine would cause quite the frustration amongst the printers. So it could be that key was a random word picked out of no where to stop the confusion between blue and black.

Maybe the real answer will never be known, but it certainly is a mystery for the printing industry.

 

Black Country Chamber Of Commerce Showcase Event – Our Experience!

Our Highlights Of The Black Country Chamber Of Commerce Showcase Event!

 

Standing outside of the GTG Training Academy as we arrived in the early hours of the morning. We were excited to setup the stand and take the first step to a brilliant day of networking.

GTG Training Academy

Once we entered the building, we located our space and started setting up our stand straight away. Ready and waiting for anyone who would like to speak to us throughout the day.

Printing

Just before the show, we had a great breakfast and we got to have a brief chat with some of the other exhibitors. At this point we were still looking forward to the busy event ahead of us.

Black Country Chamber Of Commerce Event

As soon as the delegates arrived and the event started, the pace soon picked up and the atmosphere was electric! There were people and businesses having friendly conversations all around us. It was great to be able to get involved and meet them! We enjoyed chatting to each and everyone we spoke with and the event was a great opportunity to learn about surrounding businesses.

Printmonster

(Our team, Autumn and Gavin)

Gavin became friends with the PG Tips monkey, courtesy of Coinadrink. They also managed to win some champagne from Autoguard Alarms, many thanks to them for our brilliant prize! Speaking of prizes, congratulations to the winner of our £250 worth of free print giveaway, well done Ramada Wolverhampton!

For everyone who attended please feel free to connect with our team on LinkedIn, if you spoke to them in person or wish to otherwise.

Black Country Chamber Of Commerce

Overall it was a great event and we had a lot of fun and got to meet some great people. It was a great event for networking and to gain an understanding of other businesses. A big thank you to the Black Country Chamber of Commerce and to GTG Training for providing us with a brilliant event. We are already looking forward to the next one!

Bleed and Crops Explained By Printmonster

Bleed and Crops

What are they and why are they needed?

Bleed for print

 

Introduction:

In this blog post we will be explaining what bleed is and why it is needed. We will also be looking at what crop marks are and why they are also important. Lastly we will be going through what a safe zone is and how all three of these come together to create a group of precautions when designing print.

What is bleed and why do I need it?

When designing your document, if you intend background elements to touch the edge of the document, then bleed is required. This is because if bleed isn’t added to a document, due to tolerances within the printing process, when the document is trimmed to size, small movements can result in small white strips showing on some edges of your print. Therefore any document that is being professionally printed will need bleed adding, that is if you intend the print to run to any or all of the edges. Your document will then be printed onto a larger sheet and this excess bleed will be trimmed off, so your document end ups at its required size with the print straight to the very edge.

The amount of bleed required is 3mm on each side. If the programme you are working your artwork in allows, set the bleed limit to 3mm on all sides. Alternatively if the programme does not allow you to set a bleed limit , you will need to extend the page to have an extra 6mm for both it’s width and it’s height. An example of this would be on an A4 document which is 210mm x 297mm. As mentioned before if the elements touch any and/or all sides of the document then the bleed will be added which will extend the sheet to 216mm x 303mm. The excess will then be trimmed off afterwards back to its intended size of 210mm x 297mm without any white strips appearing on your print.

What are crop marks and do I need to add them?

Crop marks or trim lines are small lines at the corners of your document that inform the print finisher where to trim.

Crop marks are essential for any document that will be trimmed after the initial printing process, especially if bleed has been added.

When a printer receives your artwork, it will be imposed onto oversized paper, sometimes, depending on finished size, there will be multiple copies of your artwork printed on the same sheet.

Once printed, the Crop Marks are used as a guide, informing the print finisher where to trim, enabling them to bring the document down to it’s final size.

What is the safe zone?

The safe zone is the 3mm zone inside of the cutting edge where no important information should be placed.

The printing and finishing process has tolerances. At Printmonster we always aim to be 100 percent accurate.

Machines and people, however excellent, can be variable. This variation is tiny, but information contained very close to a cut edge can give a poor looking finish.