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About Matthew

Many printing companies are frustrated how hard it is to engage buyers in today’s world. That’s where Matthew Parker can help. He is a gamekeeper turned poacher. Parker has bought print for more than 20 years and received over 1,400 print sales pitches. He now uses his buyer’s point of view to give practical advice to printers. He helps them engage with prospects and customers to create profitable relationships.

Download his free e-book, “Ten Common Print Selling Errors And What To Do About Them

Why Printing Companies Struggle to Make the Same Margins as Print Brokers

Would you like a 50 percent profit margin?
I met a print broker the other day who claimed that he wouldn't bother dealing with a job unless he made a minimum of 50 percent markup. He would actually turn away work the only made 49 percent markup.

This may be an unusually high profit margin, but the fact remains that brokers are making healthy margins from print jobs. I see few print brokers that are charging any less than a 15 percent markup.

Why can't printing companies make similar margins?
Printing companies can reach out to similar customers. They are selling the same products. In many cases, they are also selling the same services.

So why do printing companies seem to be pushed so hard on price when brokers are making good profits?

Maybe it's all in the sales message
I once worked with a company to create a personalized voucher book. They gave me a huge amount of valuable advice. This advice improved the results of the project and made the printed item far more valuable. In effect, the printing company was acting as a consultant.

There was one thing that struck me at the end of the project.

The printing company never sold their value to me
They had made their pitch all about economic production. What they were doing was selling price. They assumed that price was all I was interested in.

If they had shown what they could bring to the project in their sales pitch, they could easily have added quite a few percent on the price. However, all they did was to focus me on price.

There's another tactic they could have used.

The printing company should have focused on the client's world
These days, most buyers aren't that interested in print. They are interested in the results that print can bring to their companies. There is a big difference between the two.

Printing companies that focus on the client's world are more likely to create profitable relationships with their clients. They will be talking about how they can help the client's company. That means that both client and printing company are more likely to achieve what they want.

Here's a quick action point for you
Review your sales message. Whose world is it in? Are you still talking about print? Or are you making it all about the client?

The difference between these two approaches could be what is stopping you from getting the same profit margins as the print brokers.

P.S. Get some more ideas on how to sell at higher profit margins. Download Matthew’s free e-book “Ten Common Print Selling Errors and What To Do About Them.”

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