Planning print projects

I'm a print buyer who works closely with my marketing associates to plan and develop print promotions. Can you give us some tips on what to consider before we start a new project?

The way to develop the most successful print promotion is to think carefully about the purpose of the piece. Each print project is different in how it relates to your company's goals and priorities. Understanding the purpose of the project will help you make better decisions on specifications, an acceptable quality level, and the amount of money that you are willing to pay for the job. Consider these questions to help you define your expectations and set the specifications for the job:

  1. Who will see the printed piece? Who is your audience?

  2. What is the life span of the piece? Will it be used one time and then discarded, or will it have a long shelf life?

  3. Will the piece be coordinated with other printed materials or will it stand alone?

  4. What are the needs of your marketing associates? Is a response device required? Are marketing codes necessary for tracking?

  5. What is your competition doing? How can you create valuable differentiation from them?

  6. How can this job be improved over past projects?

This should get you off to a good start.
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