Revisiting the 5 Lessons from a Print Sales Rep Blog

Note from Bill Farquharson:

The June 28 “Print Confessions” blog written by a Graphic Designer received quite a number of comments both here and on the various LinkedIn groups where it was posted. The following is an interesting email I received from Colin Burnell, an estimator/planner at Graphics Plus in New South Wales, Australia. I have received his permission to share his interesting feedback. Thanks, Colin!

Regarding the “5 Things I Wish a Print Sales Rep Had Taught Me” blog:

1) How to handle a press check with confidence.

Comparing a newbie with an oldbie at a press check can be interesting. Although the graphic designer newbie is entering a new part of the production ladder he/she quickly learns that a visual goal (whether its color or sharpness) has many obstacles to pass to attain satisfaction. Stock options produce many different results each being printed with the same ink image density.

Many times have I seen the pressman’s first attempt (which I’d mark as No.1) ends up closer to the final No. 5 (client signed sheet) than No. 2 and No. 3. In other words, we have travelled around the circle and arrived at the starting point again. It is also good when a client understands that some expectations can only be achieved by revisiting design or prepress to achieve certain results.

An example is the dark photos that are filling in on the uncoated stock and that more effort at the design stage should have been made to “open” the highlights on the image. It’s an expensive lesson, but one that could be avoided if the “well-versed” and “print-educated” sales person could be involved at the design stage.

2) Involve the printer from the get-go.

If designers understood that the print shop could make or break their idea, then they would realize it’s a team effort to achieve that ideal print result. Many printers offer great “show and tell” pieces that explain a story of achievement. Designers should get some early information about what could happen in the pressroom by being shown a similar printed piece and how it started and achieved its final look.

3) The whole wide world of paper.

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