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Blog2022-06-14T20:37:36+00:00

Printing Resources

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Cross Media Marketing

I’ve always had a passion for sales and marketing, so after 13 years in retail product sales I started Clear Print to help companies market their products and services. Prior to the Internet, the best way to reach a targeted audience was to print and mail postcards, self mailers, envelope mailers, brochures, catalogs, price lists, etc. Today we have multiple marketing channels for reaching out to prospects and customers.

I’ve been doing much research on cross media marketing, cross channel marketing, multichannel marketing, you name it. There’s a wealth of information on the subject; it can be complex, technical and confusing! Simply put, it’s the combining of traditional media (such as print) with electronic or digital marketing; which encompasses websites, SEO, Yelp, social media like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, blogs, email blasts, podcasts, Instagram, etc. Marketing executives have sooooo m-a-n-y choices!

Today I realized the simplicity of it all: Establish a communication line with prospects and customers by capturing their attention wherever it happens to be. Then deliver a consistent message of interest to them. For business-to-business marketing (B to B) a good website, blog, effective SEO and LinkedIn, coupled with printed product literature and direct mail would comprise the bones of an effective marketing campaign. For business-to-consumer (B to C) one might add an emphasis on Facebook, Twitter and other social media.

Good product packaging is vital, too. Paperboard folding cartons, corrugated cartons, point-of-purchase displays and product labels are part of the mix.

Visual Media Alliance is an outstanding group which helps creative directors and marketers reach their audience across multiple media channels. Please click on the link for more data and watch their video.

At Clear Print our passion for marketing continues with a broader offering than ever before: Website design and upgrades, printed product literature, point-of-purchase displays (POPs), product packaging and labels, direct mail campaigns and more. All are coordinated to reach your customer and deliver a consistent message, which is the goal of cross media marketing.

Located in Chatsworth in the west San Fernando Valley, we serve Thousand Oaks, Moorpark, Simi Valley, Valencia and Santa Clarita, Burbank, Glendale and most of Los Angeles County. Please email sales@clearprint.com or call 818-709-1220.

By |Printing|

Retail Product Labels – Case Study

Retail product labels (also called prime labels) serve as the main identification of a product. They’re designed to attract the customer’s attention and contain the necessary information to sell the product. These retail product labels can be cut-to-size and come on rolls (for both hand-applied or machine-applied application).

Case Study – Retail Product Labels for Moonshine

A customer in the wine and spirits industry asked us to help create labels for a new family of products: moonshine. Not that moonshine is new—his ancestors were Tennessee corn farmers by day and moonshiners by night, a family tradition since 1858.

The challenge was to create retail product labels that looked like they could have been printed many decades ago but still attract attention in a modern retail store. Starting with his basic design concept, original illustration and family photo circa 1920, we created authentic-looking front and back custom product labels and provided hardcopy press proofs for his approval. We then printed the labels digitally on rolls for machine or hand application. We also printed case labels with the appropriate barcodes (which we created). The result is a gorgeous product line now going into distribution.

Custom printed retail product labels and stickers can be made on a variety of uncoated and coated papers, or water-resistant BOPP (biaxially oriented polypropylene). Water-resistant BOPP labels are available in white, clear or metallic silver. Matte, satin or gloss varnish, or lamination, are applied after the labels are printed for further protection. A choice of removable or permanent adhesives is also available. While many labels are applied to bottles and jars, we also make labels for electronic products and outdoor use (such as custom auto parts for off-road vehicles).

In addition to custom retail product labels we make folding cartons and counter displays of paperboard and corrugated cardboard. Industries served include cosmetics, hair care, health and beauty, vitamins, supplements, nutraceuticals, food and beverage, to name a few.

When it comes to product packaging and marketing we handle it all. For help with your labels, packaging and marketing please call Clear Print at (818) 709-1220 or email sales@clearprint.com. Located in Chatsworth, west San Fernando Valley, we’re convenient to Simi Valley, Thousand Oaks, Moorpark, Westlake Village, Santa Clarita, Valencia, Burbank, Glendale and most of Los Angeles.

By |Printing|

Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

I read short marketing article the other day that listed five marketing mistakes to avoid. It was by Patrick Whelan, (President of Great Reach Communications) and he made some good points. With his permission, I’ve included these five marketing mistakes to avoid for your reading pleasure.

Here’s Patrick:
“I’ve spent the last 21 years providing marketing tools to printers and mailers. In that time, I’ve been able to witness the common issues that seem to derail even the best-intentioned marketing efforts. Here are a few of the most common reasons why they fail:

1. “Treating your marketing efforts as something to be done ‘when you have time.’ Marketing needs to be planned and executed with the same commitment as other critical areas of your business such as estimating, production, billing, etc. Schedule your print marketing as you would schedule a customer job. It’s critical.

2. “Taking a committee approach. This is a sure recipe for failure. This will eat up a lot of collective time and effort and produce little, if not zero results. As the saying goes, “The camel was a horse designed by committee.” A single person needs to be in charge of your marketing committee and there needs to be accountability. For that reason, the person should not be the president, owner or CEO.

3. “Trying to craft the perfect piece/message is often the reason for doing nothing. As a seasoned print executive once told me, “the act of communicating is sometimes more important than the communication itself.” Not to say you should produce poor materials but keep this in mind.

4. “Failure to differentiate between sales and marketing. They are two very different things and often someone…has both of these in their title. Baloney! You can’t effectively do both. The end result is that they treat marketing efforts as a sales effort. They execute and measure them wrong. Someone told them years ago, ‘If you can’t measure it, you shouldn’t do it’ so they give up after a short time. More baloney! In reality, just because they don’t have the ability to measure it doesn’t mean it can’t be measured. Large corporations understand this, particularly with regards to their branding (trust) efforts.

5. “Trying to cut costs by forgoing print and relying on online efforts. You need to do both: inbound and outbound, print and digital. Print has staying power. It’s tangible, and since most companies don’t consistently use it, it’s more effective at setting you apart from your competitors. Engaging customer communication pieces are very uncommon and therefore a much more effective tool.”

For more than 30 years, Clear Print has helped companies market their products. From branding and packaging including folding cartons, product labels, expanded content labels and booklet labels; to point of purchase displays, brochures, presentation kits and direct mail, we’ve helped clients successfully launch hundreds of new products and services. Marketing and packaging professionals from industries ranging from personal and hair care, cosmetics, health and beauty, nutrition, vitamins, supplements, electronics, travel and leisure (plus many more) have entrusted Clear Print with their coordinated marketing, direct mail campaigns and product packaging.

Seeking a good ROI on your branding, marketing and packaging? Please call (818) 709-1220 or email sales@clearprint.com. Located in the San Fernando Valley, Clear Print serves Los Angeles, Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Santa Clarita and most of Southern California.

By |General, Printing|

Custom Corrugated Packaging and Retail Displays

When it comes to packaging, sometimes paperboard construction just won’t cut it — you need something more heavy-duty (such as corrugated packaging). Often counter displays, shelf displays, standees and point-of-purchase displays will use a more sturdy construction made out of corrugated material, to keep merchandise safe and sellable.  We can make corrugated packaging for:

  • Spirits & Wine Boxes
  • Personal Care Products
  • Electronic Packaging
  • Medical Equipment
  • Perishable Food Shippers and Point-of-Purchase Displays
  • Specialty Cartons and Boxes for heavy products
  • Retail Packaging & Displays

Almost any kind of package or display can be made with corrugated fiberboard or cardboard. It’s easy to get started. Just supply a sample of your product or products and we’ll design a carton or display that’s just right for the application. Using a CAD system, structural designers will create and cut a sample, including custom inserts if needed, to securely display and hold the merchandise. Materials range from single-wall micro-flutes, to A, B, C, E and F-flute to heavy corrugated, double-wall and triple-wall boxes and cartons. (See diagram below.)

To help ensure your merchandise arrives undamaged, sample cartons can be drop-tested and compression-tested before going into production. Corrugated packaging and displays can be flexo-printed in one to three colors on white or Kraft corrugated, or wrapped with beautiful 4-Color process litho sheets (on one side or two ). Popular coatings include gloss or satin AQ, high gloss or matte overall UV, as well as spot gloss and dull coatings to support your brand and stand out in retail stores or when pictured on-line.

Most cartons are glued and shipped flat. We can also pack your products or assemble complete kits, as well as warehouse for distribution and delivery on demand.

Clear Print offers free CAD designs and prototypes for most corrugated packaging requirements. Personal service and good prices too. We’re located in the San Fernando Valley in Southern California, and convenient to Simi Valley, Westlake Village, Thousand Oaks, Glendale, Burbank, Santa Clarita and the greater Los Angeles area. Please call (818) 709-1220 or email sales@clearprint.com to discus your project. You can also check out our reviews on Google: https://plus.google.com/112456816756492946342/.

By |Printing|

Product Packaging Made Easy

So you have a new product and need some type of product packaging (a carton or box) to hold it, display it attractively and ship it securely. For many small-to-medium size products a folding carton, also known as a paperboard carton, is the solution. These type of product packaging are made of heavy white paper board stock in a variety of weights or thickness ranging from 18 pt to 28 pt or more (18-28 thousandths of an inch). Folding Cartons are the ideal package for cosmetics, beauty, personal care, vitamins, supplements, health food, etc.

Large or heavy products are best packaged in corrugated boxes. These can be custom-designed and beautifully printed with full color box wraps (also known as litho labels) which are mounted or pasted to the outside of the carton while it’s made. Corrugated cartons are ideal for auto parts and accessories, audio visual equipment, electronics, toys, kitchen and bathware plus consumer goods of all kinds. Double-wall corrugated boxes provide added strength for heavy merchandise product packaging.

At Clear Print we’ll design the ideal package for your product, Simply provide your product sample and we’ll create a custom-designed folding carton or corrugated box and provide a free sample. Once you approve the construction sample we’ll create the artwork or provide the cutting die line for your graphic designer or artist so they can make artwork that fits perfectly. Below is a link to a short video from Lynda.com which explains product packaging die lines.

Clear Print is a commercial printer in the San Fernando Valley specializing in product packaging and product labels as well as marketing materials such as counter displays, point of purchase displays, brochures, catalogs and direct mail. Everything you need to sell your products and services made easy. Simply contact us as (818) 709-1220 or email sales@clearprint.com. We serve the Los Angeles area, Simi and Conejo Valleys, Santa Clarita and much of Southern California.

By |Printing|

Setting Up Artwork For Print — Additional Information

Here are some basic steps to follow when setting up artwork for print:

1. When you make your artwork template, make sure it includes ⅛” bleed all the way around. This should be the first step you do when setting up artwork for print.

2. Make sure that if any of your artwork goes to the edge of the sheet, that is actually “bleeds” off into the bleed area. (The bleed area gets trimmed off when the sheet is cut, but this extra area ensures that you don’t have any white edges showing when the artwork is supposed to go to the edge).

3. Make sure your artwork is built in CMYK or PMS (Pantone) colors only, no RGB. Presses print in CMYK or PMS colors.  Likewise make sure that all images are in CMYK profiles.

4. Don’t design in PMS colors unless you plan to print with PMS inks. Change any PMS colors to CMYK when setting up artwork for print.

5. Make sure all images are 300dpi at the size you are using them. Images that are have fewer than 300 dpi (dots per inch, aka pixels per inch) will print fuzzy.

6. If you are using a gray, it is best to be built as a screen of black only. Grays that contain red, blue or yellow can turn pink-gray, brown-gray, or blue-gray. Neutral grays only have a percentage of black in them.

7. Make sure that your type is built in black only. You don’t want to use registration black as that includes Cyan, Magenta and Yellow in it and will give you fuzzy-looking type.

8. Build files in InDesign or Quark if you are able to. Illustrator will also work. Photoshop should not be used to create artwork. Brochures, flyers and catalogs built in Photoshop are very hard to work with since the file size is huge and there are so many layers to work in. Using the right program will help you create your artwork in ¼ the time that it would take to build the same thing in Photoshop.

9. Save your files in PDF X1a format or Press Quality. Make sure in the settings that you include bleeds and crop marks. Registration and color bars are ok too.

Youtube video with great tips on setting up artwork for print.

Here is an awesome tutorial on setting up artwork for print using InDesign CS 5.5. This will show you how to set up your InDesign file, navigate through different menu options, and trouble-shoot a variety of issues that come up.

If you have any questions about setting up artwork for print, please give us a call at (818) 709-1220 or email sales@clearprint.com. We are happy to help you with your project!  Clear Print has been in business since 1980 and would love to print for you, too. Located in Chatsworth, in the San Fernando Valley, we serve most of Los Angeles County, including Valencia, Santa Clarita, Burbank, Simi Valley and other areas.

By |Printing|

Prepare Artwork for Printing

Here are some helpful tips on how to prepare artwork for printing. These tips should help eliminate delays and up-charges, as well as help you achieve a fast turnaround time.

 

Prepare Artwork for Printing, Design Tips

1. Prepare artwork for printing by printing out a hard copy of your final files before you have you send them to the printer. Often people notice things on a hard copy that may get missed on screen.

2. Show the print-out to all who would have input on the finished job. Invite them to proofread and comment on anything that needs to be corrected.

3. As a rule, don’t permit opinions regarding the overall design! Such input, if needed, should be encouraged at the beginning of the creative process—not the end. “Design by Committee” is fatal and results in the lowest common denominator of what could be considered a good design. Simply invite people to find typos, wrong data or something important that’s missing and should be included, etc.

4. Likewise, discourage anyone from suggesting “better ways” to say things. Copywriting is also a skill and art form in its own right. There are many ways to structure a sentence correctly. Writing style and preferences vary from person-to-person. Simply invite a few trusted people to point out errors or ambiguities. Generally turn a deaf ear to opinions.” Copywriting by Committee” will slow a project to a crawl and result in poor, not better copy.

5. Works of art are individual creations. If one were to assemble some of the world’s great painters or copywriters and ask them to agree on exactly what to paint or how to write, at the end of a long, painful process one would have a complete mess. The Mona Lisa was not a group effort. Your favorite painting, prose or poetry was not created by committee.

6. Make any needed corrections. Repeat steps 1 and 2.

7. After all is good, show it to the final decision maker. If any corrections, repeat steps 1, 2 and 7 until final art is approved.

8. Send files to printer and view your proofs carefully whether PDF or hard copy.

9. After the initial proof, if any changes are made (either by you or the printer) get a new proof—pdf or hard copy. Look everything over again—not only the changes but everything. Design software and the software your printer uses to print your files is sophisticated but still prone to inexplicable software glitches—like all software. Change text in one place and something odd may pop up somewhere else. The rule is check everything again. Once you sing the proof you’re responsible for any errors found later.

 

Prepare Artwork for Printing, Layout Tips

1. Prepare artwork for printing by making sure all your images are saved in CMYK (not RGB).

2. Add a 1/8″ (.125″) bleed to all sides of your artwork template.

3. Make sure images or artwork that go to the edge, “bleed” into the bleed area.

4. Export your file as a PDF, with bleeds and crop marks indicated (in your PDF settings).

(In the next blog, we’ll go into the more detailed steps of proper file preparation.)

 

Located in the San Fernando Valley, Clear Print is a commercial printer specializing in marketing collateral such as brochures and catalogs, as well as packaging and product labels. Please reach out to us as (818) 709-1220 or email sales@clearprint.com. We serve the Los Angeles area, Simi and Conejo Valleys, Santa Clarita and much of Southern California

By |Printing|

Multi Channel Marketing continued

Multi Channel Marketing Basics

Multi Channel Marketing, also referred to as cross channel marketing, is all about reaching out to your prospects and customers in the ways they want to be reached and communicated with.

Multi Channel Marketing is interacting with customers utilizing a combination of communication channels from websites, to social media (Facebook, Twitter, Pintrest, etc.), retail stores, mail order catalogs, direct mail, email, mobile, etc. The purpose is to enable your prospects and customers where and when they want to be communicated to, using the channel of their choice so they take positive action–preferably to buy your product or service.

Why is Multi Channel Marketing Important?

Smart marketers know they must be where the customers are. Think about it. When you want to buy a product or service what do you do? Internet research on Google or YouTube? Ask friends and family for recommendations? Do you visit stores, perhaps? Do you notice mail about the purchase you plan to make? Do you look at brochures, catalogs or other product literature? Most people do. Thanks to the quantity of available channels, customers have more choices than ever when it comes to how they reach out to get information. As marketers we have to be where they have their attention, when they have it there.

Sure we all have websites. But except for travel, books and music the web is not really a selling channel. Web sites without a catalog, TV, radio, print ads or direct mail promotion that DRIVE people to visit the site seldom build much new business. Your company websites is a channel for your customer to interact with you after they have ALREADY been stimulated by other mediums (Google ad, TV ad, radio ad, newspaper ad, flyers, brochures, direct mail campaign, etc.).

For most companies, the best ways to reach out and attract customers are through direct mail, search engine optimization (SEO), paid target ads and others forms of advertisement working together hand-in-hand with intelligent use of social media.

SAS, a leader in Multi Channel Marketing, has a good introductory video on the subject (shown above) and also available here: http://www.sas.com/en_us/insights/marketing/multichannel-marketing.html

At Clear Print we’re experts in direct mail campaigns that capture attention and motivate customers to take action. Natural or organic SEO is also something we do successfully. For help with your Multi Channel or cross channel marketing campaign please call (818) 709-1220 or email sales@clearprint.com. Located in the San Fernando Valley, we serve Simi Valley, Moorpark, Thousand Oaks, Westlake Village, Santa Clarita, Glendale, Los Angeles and most of Southern California.

By |Printing|

Multi-Channel Marketing

What is Multi-Channel marketing?

There are many ways to reach people today: email, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, traditional mail, printed media, promotion items and many, many more ways.

Unfortunately you can’t rely on just one channel. In todays world you need multi-channel marketing techniques. As in the end, to get your sale, it all depends on getting the message to the right person, through the channel that is best for them at the correct time.

A recent Experian survey showed that 88% of respondents plan to integrate three or more channels in their marketing campaigns. Not surprisingly, the best results often come when multiple channels are used synergistically with one message integrated across various media. But what might come as a surprise by some is that print is still a valuable part of the multi-channel marketing mix.

For example, as reported in Adweek and the Wall Street Journal, a growing number of e-commerce sites are now adding printed catalogs to a multi-channel marketing mix that typically also includes email, display ads, social media and more. These retailers have apparently discovered what others knew: Print catalogs help boost online sales.

For more information please watch this video produced by ChoosePrint.org (embedded in this blog) or can be seen here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aAy3JF-8xiY

Clear Print is a graphic design, marketing, and commercial printing company that provides multi-channel marketing services to a variety of industries ranging from fashion to personal care, health, home improvement and more. We recently produced a successful direct mail campaign for an apparel company that reactivate former customers and provided a positive ROI.

For help with results-oriented multi-channel marketing please call (818) 709-1220 or email sales@clearprint.com. Located in the San Fernando Valley, we serve Simi Valley, Moorpark, Thousand Oaks, Westlake Village, Santa Clarita, Glendale, Los Angeles and most of Southern California.

Excerpts are from:
– ExperianThe 2014 digital Marketer
– Adweek.com, Emma Bazilian, A Growing Number of E-Commerce sites are Moving into Print March 31, 2014
– Wall Street Journal (wsj.com), Elizabeth Holmes, Why Online Retailers Bonobos, Boden, Athleta, Mail so Many Catalogs
– Kurt SalmonIs the Catalog Dead? Not in the Omni-channel World 2013

By |Printing|

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