Which Printer Is Best for You? (1,131 words)
First of all, the "little guys" are not necessarily little! They are the balance of the printers that have full or half-web presses and are capable of handling catalog printing, bindery, postal sortation and mailing. Many times the smaller and medium-sized printers are very capable of handling the printing but will outsource some of those "extra" services like bindery, addressing, postal preparation, etc.
Here are seven advantages to using a smaller printer.
1. They focus on what they do best, great color and great printing.
2. Scheduling is typically more flexible: Most of their clients print smaller runs of 300,000 to 1,000,000.
3. Prices can be more negotiable. Because of the competition at this level, the printers are more flexible with pricing.
4. They usually have some house paper available and good relationships with the paper merchants, in the event that additional stock is needed.
5. Good customer service—the cataloger will always communicate with the same sales rep and customer service rep.
6. Some have postal sortation and mailing capabilities available in house or have an outside source to provide that service.
7. Usually they drop ship to the closest Bulk Mail Center or will have it trucked to the nearest facility to process.
But there must be disadvantages! Consider these six:
*There might not do the whole job in house. Often one aspect of the printing and mailing process is done at an outside facility. List/tape work, stitching or ink jet printing are the most commonly outsourced.
*They have fewer plants. The best catalog plant may not be conveniently located for catalog client.
*They may not have multiple plants. This can cause scheduling conflicts.
*Maximum print runs are typically in the 1,000,000 range. This can be a problem if the cataloger wants to rollout its catalog production.
*Scheduling fills up due to the overload from larger printers, especially at the busy season (July-November).