Choosing vendors is an important step for any business.

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For us, since we are a Denver printing company, it is vital that we work with a digital printing vendor that best suits our needs.  Our digital printing machines are high quality, high speed machines and are cost effective for us to run and therefore cost effective for clients.  Recently a partner of ours was complaining about his high speed color machine and is considering moving to another vendor.  As him and I were conversing about this, we both spoke of the importance of quality, expense and how good the service is from the techs.  Unfortunately, these are machines and they do break down, so getting them repaired quickly is a must.  Primarily, any company like us relies on service contracts because if we had to pay for service each time something went wrong, we would be out of business or costs to consumers would be outrageous.

This leads me to topic of this blog.  A number of years ago I worked as a sales manager for a major office supply company.  The challenges I faced within my own corporation were so tough that it affected productivity.  Those challenges were from two different departments (Sales & Service) trying to work together.  In sales, we were given tremendous training and materials to do our job and succeed.  As a sales person, if you are successful then you can generally make a good living.  On the service side, they were given almost no training and were paid horribly so there was absolutely no dedication to the job, the clients, the tenure of their employment and important to this topic, the sales staff.  The sales staff would (hopefully) do their job and sell a potential client on doing their business with us and when they would bring the clients in, it was the hope that the service staff would take care of them.  Too many times this fails because of the lack of training and/or pay difference.   This causes a lot of tension between the two departments because a sales person depends on the service person to make their client happy and that doesn’t always happen as typically there isn’t the incentive that sales staffs have. The interesting fact here is that you can relate this problem to almost any business whether it is Doctors vs. Nurses, Auto Sales vs. Auto Repair, Restaurant service staff vs. the kitchen staff, etc.

Here at The Print Connection, we are evaluating this closely because of our business depends on it.  As I mentioned earlier, we have a vendor that provides us service on our machines.  We leased machines from them on a 5 year plan and therefore we are 3 years into the lease.  For the most part, they have been a pretty good vendor but there have been some challenges.  Our sales representative comes in periodically trying to maintain a good relationship because he knows that in 2 years we will be evaluating whether to renew a lease with them or not.  It is clear that the sales staff of this vendor and the service do not see eye to eye.  There have been numerous times that a problem will get passed onto the other department because they just don’t want to deal with it.  Unfortunately, this is a very common challenge and more than likely will be the same issues no matter which vendor we go with.

The Print Connection does great work and we pride ourselves on producing great Denver printing services and treating all of clients well.  In the next couple years, we will be seeking the best vendors to make sure we are doing what it takes to take care of our clients.  As we grow, I hope to always make sure that staff here is happy because that will ultimately give our clients the best service and product.

Is Blogging Really Important?

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Is Blogging Really Important?Is blogging important? This is a test blog for The Print Connection.  First of all, I’m asking if you read this blog, please email me so that I can get an idea of how effective blogging is.  troy@printconnectiondenver.com

We have a wonderful company that does our web marketing; the company’s name is Seequs Marketing Technologies.  They are fabulous with their efforts of our website (which they designed) and Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and they have helped us to gather Google Reviews.   The Print Connection is a successful organization and some of that is to be credited to Seequs.  Stephen Christopher and his staff can help any company improve their digital image just like they have with us.

Why is this a commercial for Seequs, you ask?  It isn’t, but this leads to the question I have.  “Is blogging so important in the world of Web Marketing?”  I hear and read that blogging is the new wave of marketing especially since Google is now taking key words out of blogs to establish better SEO for companies.  I also understand that it is good marketing to drive potential clientele to your website.  My contact at Seequs, Josh, who is also fantastic at what he does, is regularly hounding me to write blogs.  Josh is so good at what he does, that he is trying to help The Print Connection’s business and he is very effective.  By stating my questioning of blogging, I am in no way criticizing the work that Seequs does.  So, back to my original question; “Is blogging so important in the world of Web Marketing?”

In my opinion blogs should be informative and somewhat entertaining to read.  I don’t feel that they always have to pertain to the business that is being provided.  For example, a blog on my website doesn’t always have to be about Denver printing.  I recently posted a blog about moving since we relocated our office in January.  That move was quite a battle and I thought there were some interesting thoughts that should be shared with others.  So, are readers of blogs more interested in business or entertainment?

Now I know that I am going to hear from the professionals about the reasons why blogging is so important.  Please don’t get me wrong, I believe blogging is important, I am just doing my own research here on how important it is.  I want to know from average business owners how blogging has helped them, maybe if you are reading this and care to share with me your views, I welcome the email.  Blogging takes time that I don’t always have, so in effort to make this worth your while as a reader and make it worth my time as a writer, I would you’re your feedback.

Troy Kinney
The Print Connection
troy@printconnectiondenver.com

Calling vs. Emailing

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Whether you are dealing with The Print Connection or another company, it is important to evaluate whether to contact an organization via email or to call.  The question really becomes whether it necessary to call.  In this busy world that we live in, every form of contact becomes important for time sake.  For example; if you are in the middle of a time sensitive project and the phone rings, do you have time to answer the call or keep working on the project at hand? Obviously, the right answer is to get to the phone and take the call to help the person on the other line because they are more than likely a customer.  However, this blog is to hopefully open some eyes on the importance of either emailing or calling, but not both.

Here at The Print Connection, we pride ourselves on great customer service, so this is some information to show our side of service.  We are a small Denver printer that is doing a large amount of work for the amount of staff.  Should we have more employees? Yes, however if we hired more people, then we have to raise the cost of printing to support the cost of the extra staff.  We have a saying around the shop, “we don’t let grass grow under our feet.”  If you come into our office on any given day, you will see that we are always on the move to make sure we are taking care of your jobs.  To make this story short, the importance of emailing vs. calling becomes so important.  We love talking to our customers, but every time a call happens, it takes time away from us getting a project closer to completion which can ultimately delay your project from being done on time.  We regularly get calls from clients to ask if we have received the email that they just sent.  Believe me, we understand that you may feel concerned as whether we even received your email or not.  In this new technological age, you can tell if your email has gone through or not.  If it didn’t go through, you will get a message back saying it failed.  However, if you don’t receive an email message like this, there is no reason to call.

To summarize what I am trying to say, we prefer you to either call or email, but not both.  This takes way too much time away from productivity.  To be honest, we prefer you email more than anything, this gives us a chance to respond whenever we have an opportunity.  We do respond as soon as we can, but please remember, we are a Denver printer that has to move around, therefore we are not sitting in front of our computers for 9 hours a day.  If you send an email and we don’t respond immediately, we have hundreds of customers and responding to each one immediately is frankly impossible.

Your satisfaction is our desire, but too much communication can impede the speed and quality of your project.

Troy Kinney
Owner
The Print Connection

The Print Connection Has Moved!

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If you are going to move your business… plan well!

Recently, The Print Connection made a move to a new location. The new location is at 99 Inverness Drive East, Suite 125 Englewood, CO 80112.

There are a number of lessons to be learned from a move. Even though we tried to plan all the challenges of a move, still things happen that are always issues.

In early 2013, the realization that our lease was coming to a conclusion at the end of the year was real. After leasing a space in Centennial, CO for 7 years, the time was right to seek out a location or our own. For every growing company, there are steps that need to be taken to grow the business. Some of these answers are increasing sales, increasing sales staff, increasing productivity, decreasing waste and so much more. This particular year the decision to buy a location to decrease the amount of rent and thus eliminate rent increases every 3 years.

The process began in February of 2013 with communication to a commercial real estate agent. We communicated about the type and size of a potential location. After a very short period of time, a location became interesting. The initial interest was a building of our own, however we found a “commercial condo,” which is a space within a building, not the whole building. We made an offer and that was accepted in the middle of March. Here is where one of 3 nightmares begin: (1) When a commercial building is purchased, the requirement is a 20% down payment. This can be difficult for a business to try and come up with that much money. For example; if you want to buy a building that is valued at $500,000, you need to put a down payment of $100,000. That is a lot of money for small businesses, especially. However, if you can qualify for a Small Business Association (SBA) loan then you are only required to put 10% down. The decision was made to get an SBA loan, to save initial down payment money. The problem: The bank approved the loan within 2 weeks, the SBA took over 2 months. After a ton of paperwork (the SBA wanting to know everything about your past, your present and your future), the loan was finally closed on July 2nd.

So, step 2 or nightmare number 2 began. There was a General Contractor in place to do the buildout, but of course he could not begin until the county (in this case, Arapahoe County, Colorado) gave permits to do the buildouts. As a business owner, I was dependant on the GC to get those “requests for permits” in right away. The GC did and the “waiting game” began. For you business owners, take control of getting the permits…the county officials (in this case) will be more respectful of you than they will of a General Contractor. After months of heartache and stress and us getting involved, the permits were issued finally (December 5th). Thus the buildout began.

Now, nightmare number 3. As buildout begins and the impending move drawing near, the county inspectors (again Arapahoe County, Colorado) come into play again. The inspectors are supposed to be for the good of the owner, but instead they can be ridiculous. Do to the size of the space, they required 2 bathrooms (instead of 1), they required drinking fountains (one being handicap capable), and labeling of exit doors. As a business owner, some of the items required seem ridiculous but were acceptable. At the time of the move we were pressured by time demands. We were obligated by our movers (manufacturer’s machines) to give them a 10 day advance for the move and we were trying to be out of our leased space by the end of the month. The final days were awaiting the final building inspector to give the final sign off while business was closed awaiting these inspectors to act like they are “in control.” It reached a point to where we didn’t really care what the inspector said, just sign off on the space so we can move in and work on the getting the space.

Bottom line, if you own a business and are planning to move…plan for the unexpected. The best laid plans always have a catch.

-Troy Kinney

The Importance of Professional Printing

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When Denver business owners require marketing materials and commercial printing, it is important that you acquire professional printing in Denver.

Regardless of the type of business you operate, print advertisements and other marketing materials can significantly help draw customers. Making all of your print materials appealing is going to make you stand out from your competition and professional printing services are needed to receive quality work.

You might have a printer at home that you think is going to be able to get your printing materials done. However, these types of printers are not able to provide you with the quality work that you would much rather have. At home printers are ideal for small personal documents, but for something that a large number of people are going to see you want to be proud of what has been printed.

Professional Printing Denver

Professional printing in Denver provides you with a wide variety of options. You do not just have regular paper, you can get brochures, business cards, variety sizes of fliers and posters, and much more. This provides you with a variety of items to hand out to customers and show off your business.

There are plenty of benefits to professional printing in Denver which any company can use it to their advantage. The Print Connection offers the professional printing that you desire at an affordable price. For more information on the types of printing that The Print Connection offers, contact us today.

Brand Your Business with Print and Web Presence

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Every business needs a brand – an idea or images of your product or service that consumers can connect with by identifying the name, logo, position statement or design—something that makes the business standout from the competition while displaying your business product or service. Branding is also a way to build a good reputation. Knowing how to market your brand is the key to success. The print industry remains a tangible medium to support a marketing campaign.

 Print Services Drive Customers to your Website

The print industry has evolved over the years. Today it is a viable support mechanism that is used to drive customers to your web with relevant real time content. Many people have grasped the idea of using a website to market their company in much the same way as the yellow page book. Business’ struggle for page position and Search Engine Optimization, when direct mail can drive customers to your website to review products and make purchases.

 A Print Resource Makes Sense

There are simple reasons that print makes sense. Networking your business through business groups requires a business card; a physical presence that a potential customer takes away. It continues to send your message long after your meeting. The same is true for color brochures, posters or a product flyer. It is tangible evidence to take away and share with colleagues in the decision making process and a reminder to check the website. It is still true, a picture says a thousand words and so does color printed products.

Investing in a website, social media and IT marketing is an expensive investment of time and money. However, after you invest in developing your web presence Every Door Direct Mail makes sense. You can cultivate your local market by driving more potential clients to visit your business online or visit your physical address.

Begin by establishing a partnership with a printing service because they can be a valuable resource. You can benefit greatly in the competitive world by having a print resource team and take advantage of a direct mail printing service. Without print, your company may miss your full potential.

About the Author: Thomas Miner is the President of Bartleby Press, an Austin. TX printing service. Bartleby Press provides digital printing, offset printing, graphic design, and so much more.

 

Why Door Hangers Get Results

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Looking for a low cost way to get your message out and get your phone to ring?  Try door hangers.  Door hangers are particularly effective in the West where people are more trusting and there are fewer problems with leaving something on their door.

Because you can hand deliver your message to your prospects door it allows you to target your message to specific neighborhoods.  Too often when you use a saturation mailing the demographics (people you mail to) can be all over the map, (literally).  Using door hangers for specific neighborhoods, which can include middle to upper class homes, can be extremely effective.

The biggest mistake I see when businesses or churches use door hanger is they use the “one and done method”.    This approach to advertising is witnessed in all types of marketing.   Almost all media suffers from a, “I’ll give it a try and see” mentality on the part of the advertiser.  Unfortunately people often do not buy from the first offer.

So my advice is target an area with three or four door hangers over a 6 to 8 week timeframe on prospects homes that fit your buyer profile and you will get results.   Naturally your offer needs to be compelling and your door hangers need a sharp design.  By blanketing a neighborhood consistently you will become the dominate top-of-mind service provider in that area.

Each door hanger should have an interesting headline that addresses a need or problem the homeowner might have.  Such as:

  • Want to have the best lawn in the neighborhood?
  • Reduce your utility bills by 34% and simplify spring cleaning.
  • What you can do to make sure your home is never broken into?

Think about your product or service and determine an underlying need the person who lives in that neighborhood might have.  People will only glance at the door hanger for a few seconds so be sure you have a headline that makes them want to read more.

Think about what you want the person who reads the door hanger to do?  What action must they take?  Do you want them to call, go to your website or come to your place of business?  That desired action will help you decide what the offer should be.

Perhaps it is a discount with their first purchase or an added benefit if they buy the basic service, (free window washing in the spring & fall when they sign up for lawn care service for the summer).  Keep in mind what your total expected amount of revenue will be from the customer when considering an offer.  Too often we only think about the first sale.

If your company offers a service that has repeat opportunity then this must be factored in when considering what the offer should be.  I am not a fan of just discounts and dropping your price.  I believe if you win someone on price, then you can easily loose them on price.  Research shows that price ranks 3rd or 4th in most people’s decision making process when purchasing a product.

However price is often an “initial” consideration.  So you may wish to offer a discount off the first sale or order.  That way you are only using price as an acquisition strategy and not long term.  It also makes sense to your existing customers.  They understand that a one-time initial offer is acceptable.  If you give a lower price ongoing to NEW customers you are insulting and alienating your existing customers.  A stupid mistake made repeatedly by entrepreneurs.

So as you can see coming up with a good door hanger strategy is not just buying the cheapest door hanger and giving it a go.  But take heart most of your competition views it that way and may try door hangers and most likely fail and quit.  You on the other hand will spend more time, stretch that braaaaain of yours and BINGO, and come up with a real strategy that leaves your competition in the dust, wondering why your business is growing.

Steve Counts is the owner of DPI Printing & Mailing, in Springfield, Missouri.  He shares his advice on door hangers with The Print Connection’s valued clients and friends. For printing in Springfield, MO, contact DPI Printing & Mailing today.

Finding the Right Denver Printing Company

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Acquiring the right Denver printing company to use for your printing needs can be essential to your business endeavors. At the Print Connection, we offer the Denver Metro Area the printing tools you need to make your business run smoothly. From commercial printing, to print marketing, and much more, we can help to fulfill your requirements. Some of our printing services include:

  • Commercial Printing
  • Business Card Creation
  • Bookbinding
  • Brochures / Flyers
  • Desktop Publishing
  • Digital / Offset Printing
  • Training Manuals 
  • Graphic Design
  • Etc.

As professional and experienced Denver printers, we care about completing each project with care and in a timely fashion.  Contact us today to talk about your Denver printing needs and how we can help.

Denver Bookbinding Services Through The Print Connection

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Denver bookbinding services are essential for many businesses and the right printing company can take care your bookbinding needs. When it comes to business marketing tools, it is important to attain the satisfaction of a job well done.

The Print Connection is a full service Denver bookbinding and printing shop, capable of satisfying your requirements. We offer many different types of bindings, such as Coil, Comb, Perfect, or Wire-O, for training manuals and other marketing tools. Contact us to learn more about these and other Denver printing services.

Commercial Printing in Denver

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Denver commercial printing services are required for multiple reasons and it is imperative that a reliable and experienced printing company is acquired to fulfill all printing needs.  Printing services are needed in almost every industry and for multiple reasons. Flyers and brochures, business cards, and door hangers all make for excellent marketing tools. Training manuals and bookbinding are required for both employee and customer information. The right Denver printing company can tend to every one of your printing needs and more.

The Print Connection is proud to offer our services in commercial printing for Denver and the Metro Area.  Our experiences staff will work with you to design and create the printing material that you need to efficiently run your business. For commercial printing in Denver or the surrounding area, contact us for more information.