Printers are people too! They are people who appreciate common courtesy, correct information, honesty, and respect. Here are some quick tips for talking to your printer.
1. Be thorough with your information. Tell your printer everything you need up front. Even if you're a repeat customer, take the time to fill in all the contact information and project specs. Don't assume that you'll be remembered -- your printer has other clients and a lot of employees who may not all know you personally.
2. Be honest with your due date. If you need something on Friday, tell your printer that's when you need it. If you can't pick it up on Friday, then you need it Thursday. Don't say you need it Wednesday when you need it Friday! Padding your due date can lead to rushed jobs.
3. Speaking of which, ASAP is not a due date. If you need it today, say today. If tomorrow's okay, say tomorrow. Being specific will help your printer schedule all print jobs appropriately.
4. If you really do need a quick turnaround, talk to your printer about exactly what you need and when you need it BEFORE you start designing. This gives your printer a chance to suggest sizes, colours, and paper stock that will be suitable for your timeline.
5. Be prepared to be flexible, especially if you're on a deadline. You may need to limit your choices in order to get your project done on time.
6. Submitting your files electronically? Don't assume your printer has the font you used. Send the font with your files just in case.
7. Submitting images electronically? Convert them to CMYK (four-colour process colours) before you send them over, so you'll have a better idea of what the finished product will look like. Otherwise, your printer will have to take the time to convert the image for you -- and the finished product won't look the same as the mock-up on your computer screen.
8. Don't be a pest. Make sure you have everything together and ready for your printer -- if you keep calling and adding or changing things, you're only adding more time to your project and more stress to your printer.
9. Use common courtesy. Say please and thank you. If someone does an extra-great job on your behalf, tell the boss how happy you are. A little kindness goes a long way.
10. Pay your bills on time. Being a good client can come in handy when you need a rush job or special project printed.
11. Trust your printing professional's opinion. If they suggest a different type of paper for a project, there's probably a good reason. Be open minded and consider the options -- and thank them for their time and input!
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