One Size Does Not Fit All When It Comes to Print Guidelines
Mike Zuckermandel of Zed Marketing Group in Edmond, Okla., says you can’t count on creating one insert to work in all media choices. During the recent DMA Insert Media Day in New York City, he shared his suggestions to make the best money-saving decisions for insert media, including choosing size, printers and paper stock:
1. One size doesn’t’ fit all. Blow-ins range in size from 3-1/2 in. x 5-1/2 in. up to 5-1/2 in. x 6 in., and are best at less than 0.10 oz., but can go higher. Catalogers watch the weight of blow-ins carefully because a heavy one could boost their postage rates. Miniature catalogs and product samples can take overweight pieces, such as package inserts and ride-alongs, which usually range in size up to 5-1/2 in. x 8-1/2 in. and less than 0.25 percent oz.
2. Save thousands on key code changes. Zuckermandel recommends using black key codes on one or two sides to save about $400 to $500 for each side of a plate change.
3. Try to test. Talk to your printer about running A/B split tests. Zuckermandel noted that it’s a simple and cost-effective way to get test results for a small fee increase.
4. Know your audience when choosing paper stock. There are many factors involved in choosing paper stock, but don’t overlook a key one: your target audience, Zuckermandel said. Discount merchants can probably use lower quality paper than those aiming for a more upscale market; they’ll likely choose higher-end glossy or matte paper stocks.
5. Have a good relationship with your printer. Zuckermandel noted that you can often haggle a bit more with a printer over insert media prices than print. But he added that great service can be more important than the lowest bid. A good insert media printer should understand multiple key codes with multiple destinations. The printer should also be giving you mock-up samples for approval and testing.