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Sabine Lenz

Making the Grade

By Sabine Lenz

About Sabine

Sabine Lenz is the founder of PaperSpecs.com, the first online paper database and community specifically designed for paper specifiers.

Growing up in Germany, Sabine started her design career in Frankfurt, before moving to Australia and then the United States. She has worked on design projects ranging from corporate identities to major road shows and product launches. From start-ups to Fortune 500 companies, her list of clients included Oracle, Sun Microsystems, Deutsche Bank, IBM and KPMG.

Seeing designers struggle worldwide to stay current with new papers and paper trends inspired Sabine to create PaperSpecs, an independent and comprehensive Web-based paper database and weekly e-newsletter. She is also a speaker on paper issues and the paper industry. Some refer to her lovingly as the "paper queen" who combines her passion for this wonderful substrate called paper with a hands-on approach to sharing her knowledge. 

 

The Martini Client – Stir Them with a Twist While Adding a Twist

 
Want to make your customers happy and very, very loyal? Then treat them like a martini. That’s right. Stir them up with creative possibilities and then add a twist!

Before you think I’ve had a few too many, let me explain. It was around Valentine’s Day when a red-striped promotional piece captured my paper lover’s attention within a millisecond.

Stirring it up with digital printing
“To honor this special day,” explains Jim Benedict, marketing director at GLS and the sender of said red-striped package, “it had to be red all the way. We used Neenah Paper’s Classic Crest linen in Red Pepper and printed the whole campaign digitally on our Indigo 7500.”

GLS, a single-source marketing services provider based in Minnesota, used CMYK and a triple hit of white to produce a beautiful striped pattern and ribbon effect. But it was the striking look and velvety feel of some of the hearts and stripes in the design that left me weak in the knees.

Reminiscent of the oh-so-hip wallpaper from the 60s, the super-soft touch on this project was flocking.

That added twist really makes it
No, flocking is not an option for digital presses...yet. But when GLS combined digital printing with this specialty process, they created an opportunity to make a “martini client.”

I know budgets are not what they used to be. Print runs are ever decreasing. The newest press add-ons might not be an option for every printer. You might have a different digital press model. You might not have the budget these investments require.

But, you do have the power to provide special effects as you would with an offset job. Flocking...embossing...foil stamping...diecutting...an outrageously unique binding technique.

Utilizing digital print on one side to keep the cost down might allow for a special touch at the finishing end of the project.

Think outside the digital box and offer your clients that added twist (like the flocking)—an option many of them may not even know is possible. This extra twist will stir your client’s imagination and make you a memorable printer.

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