Election Campaigns: Your New Best Friend?

Is it just me, or are you finding that politicians are spending a ton of money on printing this election cycle, too? I have opened my mailbox every day for the past month to find as many as eight pieces of direct mail paid for by either a party or a campaign. And I’m talking people running for the state legislature, as well as for national offices like in the Senate and Congress. Maybe it’s just an Illinois thing? Anybody else out there seeing this?

So here’s my question: Do you do any political printing? Why or why not?

I googled “printers who specialize in political printing” and found a site in Tampa, FL, offering packages specifically for political campaigns, complete with pricing, design services and full-service mailing capabilities. While the prices for the print seemed on the low side, the company charges $300 for design with two rounds of revisions, which is not bad money if you have designers on staff just waiting for work to do. And I’m sure it charges a going rate for the data management, barcoding, sorting, and all that good stuff.

The value of this kind of a discussion at this point is strictly in planning for the future. Obviously, it’s too late now for you to go out and start calling on candidates. The majority of the projects are already in the mail and I’m sure all future work for this cycle is already awarded.

So what do you do? I would start by developing relationships with your state parties. On the website for the Illinois State Democratic Party, not only are all the high up muckety mucks named on the first page, but you can find links to all the county organizations as well. If you are at all moved to participate, this is a great place to start, because working on a campaign might be a great way to introduce that campaign to your services.

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  • Leo Black

    In Chicago, we do have a fair amount of political printing. Not being a union shop, we do not see much of it. But there is an old saying among the shops that do print political materials: "Losers don’t pay". Non-paying losers seem to be the norm rather than the exception amongst the printers I know.

  • Mary Beth Smith

    Leo makes a good point about payment. I insist on 50% deposit with the order and balance upon delivery when dealing with political printing.