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The Real Cost Of DIY Printing

The Real Cost of DIY Printing

90% of businesses don’t track how much money they spend on printing in their offices—both for internal notes and external communications.

In general, the average employee prints and throws away up to 22 pieces of paper a day which can mean well over 5000 pieces a year. And this is just one person for general meetings and information.

So when it comes to printing materials for your marketing, these numbers can skyrocket. One typo, an odd color. Every mistake requires another edit, more time, more ink, and sends another old batch to the recycling bin.

This leaves businesses with a two-pronged solution. First, understand the real cost of printing materials yourself to make important changes. Second, use the savings to use a print service and enhance your ROI.

To help you get an idea of where you’re losing money, we break down the main (and hidden) costs below.

The Hardware

The physical aspects of printing are numerous and each has their own risks 
and costs.

Ink: At its cheapest, ink can cost about $13 per ounce with prices nearing almost $100 for the more superior qualities. No matter how much you buy in bulk, it can never compete with the huge discounts negotiated by dedicated print specialists who can pass the savings on to you.

Paper: If you’re sending out marketing pieces to your customers then regular paper just won’t cut it. The colors aren’t as vibrant and the paper is prone to tears, smudges, and vulnerable to even the smallest drop of liquid.

Buying the correct paper type each time you want to run a campaign is not only expensive, but you may end up with a surplus that has to then be stored and preserved. Knowing the ideal types to use and buying the right quantity is challenging and mistakes can be costly.

Printers: Does your business have a Multifunction Printer, an Inkjet printer, or a laser printer? How sure are you that the printer you have is the right one for your needs and the most cost-effective?

Every printer is different and not all of them are made to produce pieces high-quality enough for marketing materials. Often, you need a variety of printers to cover all the different aspects of a print campaign and different types of paper—which can be both expensive and confusing. That’s why Modern Postcard has a range of top-quality equipment to handle everything from bulk printing to niche products.

Maintenance: Another expense is the cost of paper jams, maintenance, and repairs. Different machines have different issues and as time goes on new models enter the market. This means replacement parts for your existing machines become harder to source and more expensive as does the person competent enough to repair it.

But the physical costs around printing are only one aspect. There is also the never-ending technological mishaps that can rack up huge bills.

The Software

Any marketing materials you produce also risk being affected by digital issues which lead to higher costs that can be difficult to quantify.

Connection Issues: In our 30 years of direct marketing we’ve had our fair share of urgent orders that coincided with a technical issue. That’s why we have backup machines and other fail-safes to help mediate any risks. But for most businesses, a printer failing to connect or print in a time crunch can be devastating leading to missed orders and a loss of sales.

Program Changes: Every time there is a software update or a new system is introduced there’s a risk that the default settings you’ve so carefully put together will change. From a simple color setting to the printer the file is sent to, it’s always a risk when you’re doing large volumes of printing.

The Cost of Time and Knowledge

Finally, one of the biggest costs that go uncalculated are the actual hours spent by employees to create and assemble the collateral as well as the cost of mistakes.

Manual Labor: Many standard office printers are not able to print full bleed. This means that employees need to print the documents and manually trim the print pieces themselves. Equally, if any ad has special quirks, shapes, or cuts, these all need to be hand done before being physically prepared for mailing as well.

Human Error: People make mistakes. From choosing the wrong settings on their computer to missing a typo on a large-scale print campaign. When you do printing yourself you have to assume all of the risk and costs to reprint if anything goes wrong. Going with a provider like Modern, however, ensures that the risk and potential cost is taken off your shoulders. And because this is what we do, the likelihood of any errors occurring is significantly smaller meaning your campaigns go out looking the best they can.

We Have Your Back

To be clear, doing printing yourself is possible and can be a great option for small businesses with little extra revenue. But the benefits only exist for those who take the time to do in-depth research and cost analysis to make sure they get the right machines, ink, paper, create files with the correct formatting and settings, and negotiate the best postage deals. The risk, of course, is that every single mistake is a cost that can wreak havoc on an already small bottom line.

Going through a provider like Modern Postcard can help save a lot of money and also help produce superior results. Almost any printing issues, errors, or breakdowns that we deal with cost you nothing and are entirely resolved on 
our end.

Save yourself the risk and get your next campaign off to the strongest start possible with the experts at Modern Postcard.

By Modern Postcard

Call a Direct Marketing Specialist at 800.959.8365.

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