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Blogpaper printing

Printing your blog as a regular publication is easy, as long as you have what to print and in the right format.

Small runs – digital printing

Anything up to 6,000 copies can be printed on a laser printer with excellent quality and at low cost. The prices on laser printers and ink are falling as the technology improves. You may want to purchase your own laser printer or outsource it to a printing company. Flying Pickle, our case study subject, outsourced all printing and folding to local publishing company First Edition Publishing at a cost of less than $100 for 2,300 copies with exceptional quality.

Digital color printing is still quite expensive and may not be as cost effective as b/w, but many advertisers are prepared to pay a premium for full color ads that stand out.

Advantages: high quality, fast turnaround (hours), no set up costs, color matching (spot colors) at no additional cost
Disadvantages: not suitable for large quantities

Offset printing

6,000 or more copies may be enough to justify set up costs associated with offset printing. This is the traditional technology to produce newspapers, books, magazines, etc.

Advantages: the cost grows only marginally with the volumes, full color, cheaper and thinner paper
Disadvantages: set up cost may bite on shorter runs, longer turnaround time (can be days), possible quality issues

Trimming, collating, folding, stapling, creasing

The choice of finishing options is near infinite. They all cost money and may add substantially to the overall costs.

  • Trimming – cutting the pages to size
  • Collating and folding – sorting pages in order and folding them together
  • Creasing – making a nice groove where the pages are folded

Minimizing costs

Outsourcing can be expensive if you don’t do your homework. There are ways to minimize cost without compromising the quality.

Mix and match printing technologies

Not all of the pages need to be printed using the same technology. Ads can be printed on a special full color insert using offset printing well in advance and the content printed on a b/w laser printer.
Ads can be printed in full color using offset printing with the content overprinted on a b/w laser printer.

Provide print-ready file

The files supplied to your printer need to conform to certain specifications to come out right. If something looks OK on the screen it doesn’t mean it will look good when printed. ZetaPrints web-to-print software produces print-ready files and warns you of any issues.

Regular runs

A printing company’s business model is essentially based on utilization of their equipment + additional services. You can negotiate a much better deal if you provide print ready files on a guaranteed schedule with guaranteed volumes. The printer will make sure the equipment is ready for you.