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How to Find the Best Magazine Printing Companies
screen shot 2014 02 14 at 2 19 19 pm How to Find the Best Magazine Printing Companies

Committing to a large print order with a new printer can be a

stressful and financially costly process, but it doesn’t have to be!

Working with a reliable printer can facilitate the process in a smooth,

stress-free and affordable way. To ensure that you are working with a

printer that’s dependable and right for you, it’s important to do your

research before signing on any dotted lines (and consider that a

contracted job might not even be in your best interest). Knowing and

analyzing your options is crucial.

If you’re in the market for a reliable printer, there are certain

questions to ask and answers to determine: What are the competitive

advantages of working with different printing companies? Are there any

unforeseen fees that you should be made aware of? What sort of

reputation has this company built for itself?

But before you get into any of that, you have to actually find printers to compare and research…


Find Printers to Compare

If you’ve ever been in the checkout line at a store, you’ve more than

likely been exposed to a wide range of printers without even realizing

it, simply through exposure to the magazines

lining the shelves just inches away. One of the best ways to find a

quality printer is to collect local magazines and print publications

that are up to your quality standards. From there, you can simply use

the contact information inside of these to reach out to the publishers

and ask for their printing source. However, it’s important to be

careful. If they are competitors for your own publication, you aren’t

likely to get much compliance with your request. Other sources for

printing company names can be found on social media sites like Twitter,

by tweeting for printer suggestions, or through broad Google search

terms like “commercial printer” or “magazine printer” or more local

searches like “magazine printer in Texas,” “magazine printer in

Oklahoma,” etc.


Do Your Research

Once you’ve got a printing company or two in mind, there are some important things to consider…

The History of the Company

Experience often translates into an excellent product, so finding out

how long they’ve been in business is a great way to figure out what you

can expect in terms of quality.

Potential Benefits, Knowledge and Resources

Some printers evolve from publishing companies or magazines

themselves, and tend to have a deeper sense of the fine details that

might be important to you.  They might even offer resources on ways to

improve your publishing skills.

Customer Reviews

Find out what current and former clients have to say about their

services through reviews on Google+, Yelp, etc. Looking for recurring

complaints and rave reviews is a good way to establish an impression of

the company and get a good sense of their reputation.  However, when

reading reviews, it is important to keep in mind that people tend to

complain when unhappy and are much more likely to publicly express their

frustration than their glee.

The Equipment

Another thing to consider when on your quest to find the best printer

is the type of press (heat-set we press, sheet-fed, digital press) and

accompanying equipment and how current it is. Printing technology has

improved not only speed (turnaround time) but also quality, so be sure

to look into the printing service machines being used to ensure they

align with your goals and objectives.


Read the Fine Print

As the old adage says, when something sounds too good to be true, it

usually is. It’s important not to be captivated by low numbers alone.

It’s essential to read the fine print and ensure that the printer

operates with no hidden fees or overages, as many companies will charge

you up to 3% to 10% in overages without making this charge clear up

front. Before giving the green light on a print job, be sure you know

all the associated costs. If you decide to go with a contract, be weary

of entering into an agreement with a company who is pushing for you to

sign without offering low-rate incentives. A contract means commitment

from you, and should result in more affordable services in return.


Consider Non-Local Printers

Often, people turn up their noses at the thought of an online or

non-local printer, but by disqualifying options based solely on their

geographical (or digital) location, you could miss out on your best

opportunities. Working with your printer from a distance can be just as

effective as working with them face-to-face, but the key to this

relationship will be accessibility. After all, although the

aforementioned specifications are essential pieces to solving the puzzle

of finding the printer that fits your needs, none are as important as

quality customer service. Creative jobs like printing require frequent

interpersonal interaction to achieve satisfying results, so choosing a

printing company with a live customer service representative designated

to your account is a wise decision. Not only does this frequent and

effective form of communication speed up the entire process, but it also

allows less room for error.

Since non-local printers aren’t in the nearby vicinity, you’ll want

to get your hands on some examples of their work to make a decision.

Most companies will offer to send sample packages, which you should

absolutely accept and look over for quality measures. Generally, these

packages will be shipped at the expense of the company, but if this

isn’t true for your pick, be prepared to foot the bill (and consider

looking at other options, as you should want to work with a company that

is confident enough in its work that it will back its promotional

shipping costs).


Look at Competitive Advantages

Before sealing the deal and making a final decision on a printer, go

the extra mile, research the company’s competitive advantages, and have a

few  questions answered: Do they offer free online magazine publishing?

One-on-one account representatives? On-time guarantees?

Multiple-publication discounts? What is the quality of paper they print

on? How quick is the turnaround time? Are they offering additional, more

high-tech benefits like custom mobile websites and augmented reality options?

No matter what these advantages are, they are important to consider,

because if you choose this printer, they will become your advantages,


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