Redditch Print

{Redditch Print}{Bordesley Hall,The Holloway}{Alvechurch}{B48 7QA}{Birmingham}{United Kingdom}{(01527) 63750}
Bordesley Hall,The Holloway B48 7QA Alvechurch, Birmingham
Phone: (01527) 63750

Designing a Letterhead

Designing a Letterhead
Written by Aaron Howes | 15th September 2018

There are a number of things to consider when putting together a design for your company’s letterhead. Not only do letterheads communicate vital information about your business to its receiver, they are also a prime opportunity to underline your key values and brand identity. A poorly designed letterhead may communicate the opposite of your intentions so it is vital that you get things right first time. Redditch Print have been designing and printing letterheads for many years and are well equipped to help you to create the perfect letterhead right from the offset. If you fancy having a go at designing your own though, here are some tips to get you on your way.

What must be Included on a letterhead?

Did you know that it is a legal requirement to include particular elements on a letterhead that represents your business in an official capacity? In the UK it is a legal requirement to include:

  • Your company name
  • Your company registration number
  • The country in which your company is registered
  • The registered address of your company
  • The address of all of your company’s locations

As a sole trader you must also include your name, whereas a partnership will need to include the name of each partner. Limited companies do not need to include the names of each director, although if you name one director you must name them all. Charities are required to state that they are a charity somewhere on the document, unless the company name already includes it.

What else could be included on a letterhead?

Aside from the statutory information included on a letterhead, it is also a good idea to try and include a number of ways to contact your business. These usually consist of a telephone number, a fax number (if you still have one), a general email address and your web address.

In addition, some organisations like to include their social media links, although some decide to keep a distance between official documentation and social output. Depending on the nature of your organisation you may wish to keep the two separate to maintain the official tone adopted within your paperwork.

It is always a good idea to include your logo somewhere on the design, even if it is only used as a decorative element. Some businesses print their logo on the reverse of a letterhead and maybe even use it as a watermark across the entire background of the sheet. This can add a premium feel to the design.

Redditch Print Can Help

At Redditch Print we deal in all kinds of design-­led work, including business
stationery, flyers, posters, exhibition stands and other large format print, through to
digital solutions such a web design, social media management and email
campaigns. We believe that physical print and digital design go hand in hand, and
we’re constantly developing ways to make one feed into the other. If you want to find
out more about what we do, give us a call or drop us an email.

Taking Care of Business… Cards

Taking Care of Business Cards
Written by Aaron Howes | September 6th 2018

A business card is the perfect way to get your name, brand and details out there, and despite their small size, they’re a mighty effective marketing tool. From sole traders to multi-national organisations, business cards are used by everyone to help grow their networks. Put simply, business cards are the quickest and simplest way to get in front of new customers.

With this in mind, here at Redditch Print we wanted to share a few considerations that you should make before thinking about creating that most important of pocket items.

Don’t Waste Space

In our opinion there is nothing more disappointing that a single sided business card. You wouldn’t send a brochure to your customers with blank pages, or leave entire sections of your website blank, so why would you do so with what is often your first interaction with a new customer? Best practice suggests that one side of your business card should be about you, containing all of your contact information, and the reverse should be to communicate your brand, usually by use of a logo and/or some imagery.

Don’t Overcomplicate Things

There is a tendency to try and squeeze as much information as possible on to a business card which can result in an overcrowded, busy feel to things. Ideally a business card shouldn’t bamboozle the reader, and is used to simply drive them to contact you to find out more. A name, email address, telephone number, web address and perhaps business address is more than enough to leave a customer with options. Think of a business card as a handshake.

Consistency is Key

Nothing states professionalism like consistency. A disparate collection of print materials can give an air of disorganisation to your brand, so it is important to try and instil a sense of being well organised wherever possible. If you already have a brand identity, or have had print materials created before, try and match your business card to them through use of colour and typography.

Create a Lasting Impression

A good quality business card, printed on a good quality stock, perhaps with a laminated finish, will instantly set you apart from cheaper cards. At Redditch Print we understand that budget restraints are sometimes unavoidable, but we pride ourselves on being able to offer premium options above and beyond other online printers at competitive rates. Making a good first impression doesn’t necessarily mean breaking the bank and we know every trick in the book when it comes to getting the most out of your print materials.

Print Plus Digital

Print Plus Digital
Written by Aaron Howes | 28th August 2018

An effective marketing campaign does not have to stay within one area of your marketing output. Just because you are operating a print campaign doesn’t mean that this approach has to stay purely within the world of print. The most effective marketing strategies span multiple approaches and one angle can be used to complement, and even drive, another. Some of the most successful marketing campaigns of recent years have found a way to run print, digital and social campaigns in tandem, and at Redditch Print we have driven multiple campaigns for our clients that integrate seamlessly with one another.

The are a multitude of ways in which you can communicate with your customers in the offline world and the online world concurrently, and in this post we will look at some of the ways in which you can combine your strategies to run a dynamic cross-media campaign.

Printed Buttons

This may sound a little silly, but printed buttons can sometimes be just as effective as the ones in your browser. In recent years there has been a trend towards including social ‘follow’, ‘tweet’ or ‘contact’ buttons on printed goods. Although they cannot be clicked as such, a reader can be prompted to instantly head online and find you across social networks using a visual element they are already familiar with. We all recognise the Facebook ‘F’ or the Twitter bird icon. If we see one on a leaflet or business card, splashed across the bottom of a poster or printed on a vehicle, we instantly know that this company can be found on those networks. A quick search and hey presto, we have a new way to communicate.

One thing that is very important to remember, and something that infuriates our designers on regular basis, is to remember to always include your username or a link to your social media profile. Having a Twitter or Facebook icon is all well and good, but without telling the reader where to head, how are they supposed to find you? It is a mistake that, once it has been pointed out to you, you will see time and time again. At Redditch Print we make sure to catch important details like this one from the offset to ensure you get as much marketing traction as possible.

Feedback Welcome

Whatever business you conduct, you can guarantee that at one time or another you will receive welcome, and sometimes unwelcome, feedback from your customers. There are a raft of customer satisfaction and review websites out there where consumers can reflect on the services and products that you supply. Highlighting positive feedback is an essential way to show your credibility, and many businesses find that including some snippets from these positive reviews on their print goods is a surefire way to get across their trustworthiness and create an air of positivity around their brand.

Cross Media Solutions

Linking your print materials to your digital content is a good way to tie everything together. This goes beyond simply stating your web address or email, and there are a lot of clever solutions available to help create a seamless cross-media experience for your customers.

QR codes are a simple but effective way to help bridge the gap. A QR code is a small barcode-like computer generated image (usually a black and white square) that can be scanned by a smart phone. This links directly to a website of your choosing and is a great way to steer people towards unique offers and content.

Beyond this there are also PURLs, or personalised URLs, which can link readers to their own unique microsite created especially for them. These are perfect for direct marketing campaigns where you already know the recipients’ name. Using a QR code with a PURL can take the reader to their own microsite where they are welcomed by name. This is a perfect way to reengage with all those people recently removed by the GDPR regulations from your email lists for example, and is an approach that has been used by big brands to reconnect with their customers online.

Follow and Learn

The more ways you seamlessly integrate your digital and print materials, the more information on how your customers respond can be recorded. You can use this information to build a better understanding of how your campaigns have been received, and this will ultimately enable you to shape your content going forward. Being able to respond and react to customer behaviour is a vital tool in the fight to stay one step ahead of the competition.

At Redditch Print we can assist in creating, deploying and tracking campaigns across all platforms, and have countless ways in which to seamlessly integrate those approaches. Get in touch with us today to see how we can help to shape the future of your marketing materials, both in digital, and in print.

Large Format Print – A Guide

Large Format Print

Written by Aaron Howes | 15th August 2018

If you’re planning on putting on an event, exhibiting at a show, or even just need some signage to stand out from the crowd, the chances are you are going to need to produce some business materials in large format. Whether it’s a full blown exhibition stand, a set of PVC banners or pull up banners, or some durable signage, being able to produce print ready designs in a large format can be a difficult ask without the appropriate design experience.

Producing designs in large format is a little more difficult than the run of the mill print design work, and it is always helpful to have people at hand to assist in keeping the quality up, and the file sizes down! Redditch Print can help you to produce designs that are ready to go from the offset without the difficult back and forth often associated with large format printing. We have been helping businesses with their large format print requirements for years and pride ourselves on our ability to take away the stress often associated with it.

For those brave enough to attempt it themselves we have produced this handy guide to help you to avoid some of the common pitfalls associated with large format print design.

Vectors Vectors Vectors

We know what you’re thinking… what’s a vector? Don’t worry, we have a definition for you. Now bear with us, because it can get a little complex.

Vector graphics use geometric instructions rather than pixels like a normal image would. With no pixels to think about, your design can be printed at any size without increasing the file size or losing any quality. Think of it like this – a circle is always a circle, no matter how big it is. A circle as big as a house will contain the same amount of geometric information as a circle as big as a penny. Vectors work like this, meaning they’re infinitely scalable and therefore perfect for large format printing because the file sizes remain very small.

Now imagine that your penny-sized circle is made up of pixels – lots of tiny little squares like when you used to stand too close to the TV as a child. If we scale up that circle the pixels will get bigger too, and your circle will start to look like a load of big squares. The only way to make the circle look like a circle again is to increase the number of squares it is made up of. This is referred to as resolution. The higher the resolution, the more pixels there are. The downside with this is that pixels require memory, meaning that large format images in a high enough resolution are often backed up by a massive file size.

Using vector graphics means that designers can work at a smaller size to begin with and can then easily scale up a design when the time comes to print. The use of vectors also aids consistency, and items used on small things like business cards and flyers can easily be scaled up for use on banners and exhibition stands.

Near and Far

Contrast is something that is often overlooked when producing large format designs and too much time is spent on minute details. The majority of large format print will be seen from afar, often across a busy exhibition hall, or perhaps from the other side of the street. It is therefore vital that a design has a high impact from distance, to coax the viewer to come closer and find out more. Once you have attracted the attention of a viewer you can focus on the smaller items such as leaflets and brochures that provide a little more insight into what you are trying to sell and really drive that message home.

Don’t Forget the Basics

Just because you are producing something at a bigger size doesn’t mean that the basics like bleed or using the correct colour space should be ignored. Large format print still has to go through the same printing processes as smaller items like leaflets and flyers, just on a larger scale. Creating a design without bleed can result in unwanted borders around images so don’t forget the usual stuff.

Let Redditch Print Help

Redditch Print can help you with all forms of large format printing, from banners, exhibition stands and signage, through to flags, pull up banners and more.Whatever your display requirements, we can accommodate with great quality solutions. Get in touch with us to find out more about how we can help you realise your large format print projects for less.

High Quality Print Helps

High Quality Print Helps

Written by Aaron Howes | 2nd August 2018

The printed materials sent out by a business are at the forefront of creating a good first impression. Items like envelopes, letterheads, leaflets and promotional items are in many ways the very essence of your brand. Customers and consumers will formulate their ideas of your business based on the items that represent you. That’s why it is imperative to get them right. Not just in a design sense, but also in the quality of their production.

Here at Redditch Print we understand both aspects and can provide a full end to end service that takes care of your company’s output from conception to delivery. We understand the value of considered design, and couple that with a superior knowledge of materials and printing techniques to help you to navigate the often messy world of print. So with that in mind, let’s take a deep dive into some of the ways a focus on high quality print techniques can help to formulate the best possible impression of your business.

Show Value

Let’s start with the obvious. A better quality approach to print instantly shows your customers that you care – not only in the sense of caring about your output – but also to show them that you are willing to spend a little more to maintain your relationship with them. You demonstrate that you take a little more care and attention when it comes to communicating with your audience, your staff, and even your suppliers. Luckily, at Redditch Print we have numerous ways of instilling a premium feel into your print work without breaking the bank.

Quality Communication All Round

It isn’t just promotional items, brochures and leaflets that will communicate a good or bad impression of your business. Even your day to day items such as business cards, letterheads, compliment slips, or forms will be judged by your clientele. If you have taken the time to produce better quality items all round, their value will be much higher than the words written on them. Creating an air of professionalism all round is vital to showing that your company is imbued with a certain amount of credibility.

Define Quality

Your print output in many cases will be your customer’s only means of interaction with you. Think of your print work as a shop window. It is your opportunity to communicate the values of your company and leave a lasting impression. Whether it is something as simple as a business card in a person’s wallet, or a form they are required to fill out as part of your service. It is an opportunity to impress what is technically a captive audience, even if it is only for the most fleeting of moments.

Just Remember…

Poorly designed or poorly printed materials can give out the wrong impression of your business which will ultimately end up having a negative impact. Taking a little time to really consider the options available to you will pay dividends in the long run. Here at Redditch Print we deal in all kinds of design-led work, including business stationery, flyers, posters, exhibition stands and other large format print, through to digital solutions such a web design, social media management and email campaigns. We believe that high quality physical print and digital design go hand in hand, and we’re constantly developing ways to make one feed into the other. If you want to find out more about what we do, give us a call or drop us an email.

Print in 2018 and Beyond

Print in 2018 and Beyond
Written by Aaron Howes | 25th July 2018

Although the digital media and marketing landscape will continue to adapt and change as new technologies enter the marketplace, they are by no means taking over. Print and its value to your business as an effective marketing tool will remain a solid bet this year and for years to come. Whilst digital marketing has its merits, print marketing gives off an air of trustworthiness, thanks to its tangibility and will be sure to communicate the right impression for your business.

As with all things the world of print has its trends, and we like to make sure that here at Redditch Print we keep ourselves and our clients at the forefront. So let’s take a look at what we can expect for the second half of 2018 and heading in to 2019…

Keeping it Simple

There has been a move over recent years towards clean and clear layouts through the use of ‘flat’ design. Gone are the days of overcomplicated layouts, drop shadows and Photoshop effects. The focus is now on clever use of colour, contrast and consistency, evoking the trends we see on our screens every day. Consumers are well versed in sales techniques now and like to keep things short and to the point. Maximising white space and keeping text as concise as possible is the best bet for conveying your message in any industry.

Make it Personal

Using personalised materials is becoming an increasingly popular option, even in the world of print. Consumers are used to the digital world being completely tailored to their needs through the use of clever algorithms and covert marketing techniques. Print doesn’t have to be any different, and creating direct mail campaigns tuned to specific audiences is not as difficult as it may sound. At Redditch Print we can help you to create the perfect tailored print campaign that will make your customer feel special.

Print and Digital Hand-in-Hand

There has always been an argument that digital marketing will be the death of print. As a printer we can assure you that this is not the case! If it were true we wouldn’t exist. At Redditch Print we have found that the reality is quite the opposite. When done correctly, digital marketing campaigns can work alongside, and even complement, digital campaigns. We have found that many businesses have recently been hit hard by the new GDPR regulations, losing swathes of their mailing lists along the way. We have helped a number of clients regain those lists through targeted direct mail campaigns, encouraging consumers to opt-in again. Finding a useful relationship between digital and print materials is the key to generating new business, not just in 2018, but through the years to come too.

Let Us Help You Connect

At Redditch Print we deal in all kinds of design-led work, including business stationery, flyers, posters, exhibition stands and other large format print, through to digital solutions such a web design, social media management and email campaigns. We believe that physical print and digital design go hand in hand, and we’re constantly developing ways to make one feed into the other. If you want to find out more about what we do, give us a call or drop us an email.

Is Email Marketing Dead?

Is Email Marketing Dead?

Written by Aaron Howes | 17th July 2018

Many businesses are reliant on email marketing. As we move beyond GDPR, a large majority of email marketing lists have been cut by as much as 90%. Despite this, there are ways to reposition the marketing of your business and move back to more traditional methods. Options like direct mail are still readily available and affordable too.

In more recent times many businesses have adopted a digital-first marketing strategy, with some abandoning the more traditional approaches altogether. Whilst digital approaches are cost-effective, easier to keep track of, and almost instantaneous, there is now a growing argument that the old ways can yield greater results. It can be argued that focused campaigns with genuine results are far more valuable than the shot-in-the-dark approach of email campaigns.

The rise of social media and the amount of time people spend online each day has presented a negative impact upon the way consumers now view email. Research shows that as many as 70% of consumers now feel that they receive far too many emails and feel that they can gain all of the information they need about the brands that they are interested in via social channels. So does this spell the end for email as a direct marketing tool?

A recent investigation by Xerox showed that the average person receives around 100 emails a week, and each household can expect 16 pieces of direct mail to drop through their door during the same period. Royal Mail has found that 51% of marketing emails are deleted within two seconds of being opened, but in the same study found that 56% of consumers believe that direct mail grabs their attention for longer.

Live and Direct

When coupled with the evidence shown above, having the ability to target direct mail marketing to specific consumers can become an incredibly powerful tool, especially when trying to market your business to potential new customers. Through personalised print, businesses can guarantee an increase in response rates over and above anything sent via email.

A targeted campaign that speaks to specific areas of a market directly makes complete sense, and can even be used to call the consumer to reengage with a brand in the digital realm. The new GDPR laws state that companies can longer distribute content to consumers unless they have expressly agreed to that company doing so. Everybody remembers the increasingly desperate emails arriving from companies whose mailing lists they had signed up to asking them to confirm they still wanted to receive their marketing emails don’t they? Everybody also remembers ignoring those emails! In the post-GDPR world, email marketing lists are now all but empty, and many businesses now need a way to repopulate their marketing lists and reengage with the consumer. A direct mail campaign pointing consumers to digital content could very well be the perfect solution.

What’s Next?

Whilst there are merits to both email marketing and direct marketing solutions, both of which are readily available here at Redditch Print, email marketing has taken a serious hit after the new GDPR regulations were introduced. What’s needed is a way to reconnect with consumers, both in the real world and the digital one. A direct mail first solution seems to be something that makes perfect sense right now, even if it is simply to rebuild those email marketing lists decimated by GDPR.

At Redditch Print we deal in all kinds of design-led work, including business stationery, flyers, posters, exhibition stands and other large format print, through to digital solutions such a web design, social media management and email campaigns. We believe that physical print and digital design go hand in hand, and we’re constantly developing ways to make one feed into the other. If you want to find out more about what we do, give us a call or drop us an email.

Local vs Online Printing

Local vs Online Printing

Written by Aaron Howes | 26th June 2018

When it comes to selecting a printer for your project, many companies struggle to decide between an online printing service, like Vistaprint, or a local printer, like Redditch Print. Large companies and small businesses alike are turning to online printing companies for a number of reasons. They may be unaware of local print companies in their community or assume that they will save time and money by using an online printer. There are actually a number of advantages to using a local printing company like Redditch Print – some of which may surprise you. For many business in and around Redditch, Redditch Print have proved time and again why it is important to consider using a local company for your print project instead of one of the big online suppliers.

When comparing local or online print suppliers, it is important to make sure you are comparing them in the right way. Are you getting the same type of materials (paper quality, paper colour, paper thickness)? Are the printers using the same quality equipment and finishing techniques? Will your colours be the same vibrancy as your artwork? Redditch Print carry a large stock of materials for you to choose from, and can cater for a range of specialist print applications which means we have options to fit any intended use and budget.

When considering cost, it is also important to consider other factors besides the product price alone. Most small businesses in the Redditch area don’t have in-house graphic designers, so it may take staff unfamiliar with design software a long time (that they could be doing other things!) to create design files to submit for online printing. Online printing services often require you to submit a perfect, print-ready file, and no one on the service side is checking for errors. For complex design projects, this could further increase the chance that files are submitted with design errors that could cause a reprint (at your expense!) if not caught before submitted to an online printer.

Using Redditch Print allows you to take advantage of our trained graphic design experts, who can make sure your files meet the proper specifications to print correctly while also advising you on the best materials, image resolutions, colours, and designs to ensure that your printed product is perfect the first time.