Matte vs. Glossy Brochures

Even in a technology-driven world, brochures have stood the test of time. Businesses are still using brochures as a go-to marketing tool. Why? Simply put, they are incredibly versatile, cover a lot of information in a compact size, and are cost effective. So, if you’ve decided that brochures are a marketing-must for your company, it’s time to ask the hardest question: matte vs. glossy brochures?

You see, brochures are all about design, the right blend of colors, and the paper used. Every single detail matters. This is especially true when it comes to the finish of your brochure, which brings us to our next point. Surely, matte and glossy paper have their pros and cons, but what are they?

Like most aspects of marketing, it all comes down to who your customer is and what you are offering. If you consider what they would prefer, weighing out the pros and cons in today’s article should provide you with some guidance.

GLOSSY BROCHURES

PROS —

  • Stand out from the competition. Glossy brochures shine. The smooth and attractive finish will seek to capture the attention of your target audience.
  • Survives wear-and-tear. When bent, marks are less prominent on a glossy brochure. This is an important consideration if you’re delivering them via mail. Glossy brochures are durable with a finish that lasts.
  • Color Quality. Printing your brochures on glossy paper is the best way to ensure a wide color range and high image resolution. If your brochure is very visual and you want your colors to “pop”, use glossy paper!

CONS —

  • Poor readability. Because a glossy finish is so shiny, it can difficult to read in certain lighting. Is your brochure going to have a lot of content with small print? If so, be careful of glossy paper.
  • Lightweight. A glossy brochure is usually thinner and lighter than a matte brochure. This may present a problem if you plan on setting your brochures outside on a particularly windy day.
  • Attracts fingerprints and dust. Basically, this means that glossy brochures are for business offices and dentists, not preschools and construction companies.

MATTE BROCHURES

PROS —

  • A muted finish. The right use of colors on a matte brochure looks amazing and the subtle finish will present a more muted feel.
  • Perfect for reading. Is your brochure text heavy? If yes, you may prefer a matte finish. Matte brochures are easier to read and do not reflect light like a glossy finish would.
  • Black and white. If you plan on printing your brochure in black and white, matte is the best option. Especially if you are including several black and white images, a matte finish will add texture and depth.

CONS —

  • Delicate. A matte finish isn’t as durable. The corners are more likely to peel and the cover might begin to fade.
  • Dull. Depending on the colors you choose, images may appear to be less vibrant and vivid. This could be a pro or a con, depending on what feeling to want to invoke with your brochure.
  • Perception of Quality. Matte brochures may feel similar to ordinary stock paper and might not look as high-quality as glossy paper would.

Which is Right for YOUR Business?

It all comes down to the purpose of your brochures. Are they to canvas? Choose matte, it is more cost-effective. Are you printing a visual and colorful menu? Choose glossy, it will last longer and add vibrancy to the colors. Are you wanting something subtle and muted? Go matte. Or, do you want flashy and eye-catching? Glossy all the way.

At the end of the day, when it comes to contemplating the pros and cons of matte vs. glossy brochures, you may find that your business lies somewhere in the middle. If this is the case you have two options: opt for semi-gloss (a great option between glossy and matte), or print some of each! If you will be using your brochures in multiple scenarios, it’s okay to print your brochures with different finishes to fit the occasion.

Reach out to The Print Authority so we can assist with any printing needs and settle the debate between matte vs. glossy brochures once and for all. Give us a call anytime at (615) 468-2679 or email us at CustomerService@ThePrintAuthority.com.  We’re looking forward to working with you!

5 Tips For Streamlining Print Production

Process improvements enable companies to gain a competitive advantage. One underutilized process improvement? Print production. Yes, you know all that time you take when a new hire starts? When you need to print out employee handbooks and new business cards? Streamlining print production organizes that process for you.

Streamlining print production in your company keeps costs as low as possible while maintaining high productivity. Although trimming time and costs from the print production cycle can seem daunting, it doesn’t have to be.

In today’s post, we’ll look a more effective way of streamlining your printing efforts moving forward.

1. Organize Relevant Procedures

It’s easy to get overwhelmed when thinking of all of the tasks, timelines, responsibilities, and resources used in print production. Because of this, it is important to separate these tasks into sections. We suggest starting with general procedures and underlying tasks.

To begin, document all of the relevant procedures needed in print production, organized in chronological order. Then start filling in specific tasks that you will need to complete these procedures.

For example, a procedure could be something along the lines of “Obtain a Quote from Print Production Company.” The tasks under this procedure may include items like figuring out the shipping date, reviewing the proofs, deciding on the stock weight, size, and color, and so forth.

After this, you should have access to a detailed list of all procedures and tasks from start to finish.

2. Set a Timeline

The next step in streamlining print production at your company includes setting a timeline. While referencing the detailed list of procedures and tasks, determine which tasks require a specific finish date.

Where applicable, all tasks should have a due date. If the tasks do not have a specific due date, take note of the length of time the task should take to complete.

If you are having a hard time setting a timeline for certain tasks, you might want to create a process flowchart. This will give a visual representation of the sequence of tasks, connected with directional arrows and lines. You can then start to estimate the amount of time that each task will take and add it to this chart. This will give you a better idea of any bottlenecks within the overall process and where you could better optimize time.

3. Determine Responsibilities 

After setting a timeline, it is now time to determine who will be doing what. Refer to the chart you have created and make a note of which individual will be responsible for the completion of each task.

An organized delegation of responsibilities will increase effectiveness in communication and accountability. In addition, each employee will have a heightened understanding of the responsibilities of their role and a detailed timeline to follow.

4. Documentation

Perhaps this goes without saying, but documentation is one of the most important parts of streamlining print production. To support the list of procedures and tasks created earlier, documents should give a step by step description of how to do each task.

The purpose of documentation is to increase efficiency and consistency with each task. Regardless of the individual, these tasks descriptions should be easy to understand, follow, and replicate. Optimally, there should be enough detail to where a new hire could walk in and complete the task as efficiently as whoever came before them.

5. Find a Production Partner

Although some companies use more than one niche printing partner for all of their projects, most find it easier to hire a specific full-service printing production partner to handle all printing. This will ensure consistency and efficiency between different projects. It is especially useful to work with a printing company that handles both graphic design and printing fulfillment.

Another perk to look for is on-demand fulfillment, offered by companies like The Print Authority. Rather than printing an unnecessarily large quantity of documents for storage and long-term distribution, they print documents on demand for immediate distribution. This flexible model is able to lower costs, eliminate waste, and speed up turnaround.

 

With that being said, making a detailed list of procedures, tasks, timelines, and responsibilities is a great way to go about streamlining print production. After completing these steps and partnering with a reliable business printing company, you are on the right track to cut down overall costs and time!

Ready to streamline your printing process and work with an experienced printing partner? Give us a call anytime at (615) 468-2679 or email us at CustomerService@ThePrintAuthority.comWe’re looking forward to working with you!

What To Print In A Welcome Packet For New Employees

Your business is an amalgamation of the efforts of your employees.  In today’s competitive world, you want to show them appreciation — right from the start.  With this in mind, it is important to spend time considering what to print in a welcome packet for new employees.

As you examine different strategies to compiling a new employee welcome packet, keep in mind your overarching goal to help employees acclimate to their new job and get them in the right frame of mind to make a positive impact on your company!  How exactly do you do that, though?

1. Warm Welcome Letter

Oftentimes, employers overlook the design and content of the welcome letter in the on boarding packet.  Although first impressions of the company occur during the interview process, the welcome letter is the new hire’s first experience in his or her new job.

Consider the welcome letter as your official first impression.  In larger corporations, it is especially important to create the right tone from the beginning. Personalizing the letter is an even better strategy so they know you didn’t simply copy and paste!

2. Forms

As required by law, there are mandatory forms that employees must submit in order to meet legal requirements.  The documents frequently cannot be branded, but most employees have seen them before.  These may be the most important items in the welcome packet because employees have to fill these out to get paid!

3. Handbook or Pamphlet on Company

Upon getting hired, many employees are unaware of the company background/history or what their specific day to day tasks will look like.  Even with years of experience in a similar previous position, it’s best to ease them into the new surroundings and culture.

Although the information in an employee handbook or pamphlet is typically straightforward, strategic design elements can still be utilized.  We recommend hiring a graphic designer to find a balance between fun design and practicality, communicating both the company culture and necessary information.  You can use eye-catching colors or creative designs to truly capture the branding and energy of your company.

4. Onboarding Plans

To help employees acclimate to a new position, give a detailed outline of their onboarding schedule and expectations.  We have found the warmest welcomes to be transparent and informative.  Although your new hire may be nervous at first, you now have an opportunity to settle this fear.  Letting them know in advance what they’ll be facing will put their mind at ease.  It will also make them feel more comfortable in an unfamiliar environment.

Perhaps rolling out the red carpet for your new employees is not necessary, but you should create an environment where employees feel confident and excited from the very first day.  Your new hire welcome packet should not only include everything they’re going to need to start their job.  Don’t forget to include some excitement and personality in your onboarding documents as well!

Have questions about what to print in a welcome packet for new employees? Contact us at (615) 468-2679 or fill out our contact form.

Printed Restaurant Training Manuals

Many restaurants choose printed restaurant training manuals to add a sense of brand and restaurant culture. Printed training materials make onboarding new employees much easier, which then allows managers to deliver their message in a clear and concise way and to focus on improving operations. Printed training manuals clearly communicate the standards of the restaurant and proper procedures. This ensures a superior customer experience and keeps servers, cooks, and guest assistants all on the same page.

When planning printed restaurant training manuals, it is important to consider both the design and printing of the project to ensure your manuals are both easy to read and cost-effective. Because of this, the experts at The Print Authority will individually cater to your unique requirements.

In today’s post, we’ll review the printing process and provide tips on training your employees.

Design and Development

If you need design help, the graphic designers at The Print Authority help design easy to read and understand training manuals. We also work well with companies that have communications experts who create the content and/or design. We are experts at making your manual look great and communicate effectively, a direct effect of being printed with high-quality standards.

Typical restaurant training manuals include information about:

  • Processes related to the completion of daily tasks in the restaurant
  • Procedural checks to ensure quality
  • Safety protocols
  • Policies and employee benefits
  • Permissible usage of company property and assets
  • Plans for daily and weekly routines
Most importantly, training manuals should motivate your team to do the right thing and work together as a team!

Make Sure It’s Branded

Great training manuals are updated regularly to ensure that information presented to new employees is current, reflecting up-to-date industry standards and company procedures. An outstanding restaurant training manual should incorporate both high-quality design and company branding. This helps employees feel like a part of the organization, reducing turnover and improving adherence to company standards. Great training materials also are a physical demonstration of the restaurant’s commitment to training their employees. In addition, well-prepared materials reinforce the same messages and themes to all team members, communicating the company vision to everyone.

When you add branding and professional design to your training manuals, your team members will notice the difference. They are more likely to actually read the materials presented this way and to absorb what you are communicating. In other words, well-presented materials are more likely to get the job done!

Lastly, it is important to make sure that your communications are clear.

Since a training manual will serve as the organization’s voice, it should align with the organization’s goals for onboarding new employees. A great training manual includes high-quality design and printing, clearly presented messages, and company branding.

Hire a Great Print Company

All things considered, we recommend working with the experts at The Print Authority to get the best quality training manuals possible. We ensure that the whole process is seamless and employee training goes smoothly. With over 27 years of experience, you can trust our team to understand the needs of each restaurant we work with.

Here’s a list of the services we offer under our banner:

  • Almost every order gets same day or next day shipping
  • Unparalleled customer service and communication
  • Iterations produced quickly (design and development)
  • Lower costs than the competition
  • Higher quality product for customers

Give us a call anytime at (615) 468-2679 or email us at CustomerService@ThePrintAuthority.com. We’re looking forward to working with you!

Custom Restaurant Guest Checks

Custom restaurant guest checks are a great way to make sure your customer’s orders are communicated accurately and effectively, improving the guest experience on a daily basis. Although there are many ways to communicate an order from a guest to the kitchen, putting all the details in writing in a way that everyone understands is the key to providing excellent guest experiences. In addition, if you decide to use guest checks, you also have the opportunity to introduce your brand into another aspect of the customer experience. You brand most aspects of the restaurant, from menus and interiors to waitstaff uniforms. So, why not extend that initiative with custom restaurant guest checks?

Details, Details, Details…

Little things matter in restaurant operations every day. Many restaurants have their own way to communicate each guest’s order to the cook.  Although some restaurants require less communication of custom orders, most sit down operations require an effective way to communicate the details of each guest’s order from the server to the kitchen.

This is even truer in today’s age of food allergies, gluten-free items, low fat or low-calorie meals, and customers with particular needs. It is critical for customer happiness (and even health and safety) that each guest’s exact order get to the kitchen in an understood and actionable way.

Its All in the Design

You know what works in your restaurant environment! Each company likely has its own abbreviations, symbols, and special markings that communicate a food order. You need to design your custom guest check to accommodate your needs. Some restaurants do better with checks that are more free-flowing with lots of space for writing, while others use boxes with items to choose to simplify and speed up the order taking process. Keep in mind that special abbreviations can be listed on the guest check itself. Another idea might be to list monthly specials on the check or special instructions to the server. You can use the guest check to improve your operations!

Customized Branding Integration

A strong branding initiative analyzes every part of the customer’s experience in your restaurant. It starts the moment they enter your restaurant and ends when they leave. You want to make sure that you offer a truly branded experience at every step. This custom integration helps your brand leave a lasting impression, to later pull them back to your restaurant. Even the guest check supports the branding of your company. You might try putting the restaurant logo on the back so customers see the brand when the guest checks are being used. Get creative to help reinforce your image and message

Guest checks are an often-overlooked part of branding because consumers don’t expect a branded check experience. That’s why it’s the perfect place to catch their attention!

How to Print Custom Restaurant Guest Checks

Start with a great design, and be sure to incorporate the space you need to communicate orders effectively.

If you’re not particularly skilled or interested in design, consider hiring a printing shop like The Print Authority to take care of your printing needs for you. They have professional designers who can develop the custom restaurant guest check for you.  We can also offer your company bulk purchasing opportunities which will help cash flow and lower cost!

The Print Authority

The Print Authority has more than 27 years of experience in the printing industry. We have graphic designers that are equipped to turn your vision into a reality. One of the unique features of our printing services is that we offer a printing on-demand system! This system allows a restaurant manager to order supplies on an as-needed basis. 

Ready to take your branding to the next level? Contact us at (615) 468-2679 or by filling out the form to learn more about printing custom restaurant guest check.

Custom Online Business Printing – How to Set it Up

In the age of entrepreneurship, everyone has a business idea or side hustle. What business owners quickly come to learn is, they need printed materials. From business cards, to signage, you’ll need custom online business printing to create all of the business materials you need.

The Print Authority builds custom web to print portals for clients who want to place custom online business printing orders. We design, manage and print from this portal. Everything is taken care of by our experienced team. (The average employee has 12 years of experience at the company!)

Do you need a simple way to order printed materials for your business? Not interested in spending thousands of dollars and countless hours doing it yourself?

Here’s a look at how to set up custom online business printing with The Print Authority.

How to Get Started

Before starting your order you need to prepare your images, content and logos.

Next, you’ll reach out to The Print Authority to get a custom online portal started! Our portals include:

  • Custom Branded Appearance of the Portal
  • Self Sign Up with Password Protection
  • Advanced Customization Features
  • Automated Approval of Orders
  • Control of Branding including fonts, styles and colors
  • Grouping of Material into Kits
  • Many Shipping options
  • Storage of Customized Artwork for future orders
  • Preset Pricing
  • Custom Accounting Codes

We offer basic websites for free with a signed contract to use or recommend The Print Authority exclusively. We build the portals in-house and load the servers and uptime from a third-party vendor that has a 99.9% uptime! 

Once your personalized portal is set up, you’ll be ready to start submitting printing orders!

Contact the Experts

We print most products in-house, and then ship the completed project the same day or next business day (at the latest). You have a vision, and want to make it come to life.

Ask our representative about the basic option. You can start customizing it according to your brand’s guidelines and take advantage of our pre-filled menu items. We’ve found it makes things MUCH easier for first-time clients.

It doesn’t stop there. Our dedicated staff loves what they do, and they’re happy to help you. They will answer any questions, comments, or concerns you have quickly and completely.

We’re here for you and your business.

Customer Service

Custom online business printing is overwhelming can be confusing to set-up by yourself. Let us help. We want to save you the time, effort and frustration that goes into the DIY approach.

No standing in line, dealing with clumsy portals, or wading through a complicated interface. It’s all about simplicity and user experience around here. If you’re looking for a beneficial, smart partner to guide the way, look no further.

Our experts are standing by.

What are you waiting for? You can start today. 

Contact The Print Authority today!

Bulk Printing Companies in Nashville

Bulk printing comes in many shapes and forms, even among bulk printing companies in Nashville. You’ll find varying levels of customer service, price, experience, and print quality.

You have unique needs, which is why it’s important to find a company that understands and has the skills to fulfill those needs. If you need one-day delivery, multiple batches of orders, or even customization with a unique design, you want to find companies experienced in these areas.

Nashville is home to some of the highest quality bulk printing companies in the country. In this post, we’ll highlight some of the best in the area. Start at the top of the list and work your way down until you find the company that best suits your needs.

1. The Print Authority 

For more than 25 years, The Print Authority has served Nashville as the premier printing partner for local businesses— this level of experience matters.

The team services a wide variety of industries in the area. When it comes to bulk printing, no one in Nashville is more skilled or versatile than The Print Authority. If you’re looking for a partner who takes your needs seriously, look no further than this team.

Strong teams produce strong work, and strength comes from skill AND experience. At TPA, the average employee has worked 12 years with the company. It’s pretty safe to say the TPA team is a strong one!

2. Minuteman Press

Minuteman Press is a full service design and print marketing company. They serve both large and small companies. Their customer database includes a wide list of industries, from government agencies, to NGOs, to professional sports teams.

They can handle all sorts of print queries and issues. If you’re looking for a high-quality partner in the area, Minuteman Press is a valid option.

3. Southern Post

Printing services at Southern Post is easy, fast and affordable. They can produce full color marketing materials, and ensure all orders leave customers happy and satisfied.

They offer their clients with affordable, efficient services. It’s not enough to just know you need something printed. It’s also important to have a partner who understands the technical side and can help you create visually appealing prints.

4. Midtown Printing

What started as humble beginnings in the 70s, became a precursor to the new copy-shop.

Midtown has flourished into a full-service printing company. They’re Nashville’s pride when it comes to heritage print shop, and are at the forefront of printing technology. They cling to old-school values, but equally embrace new technology. It’s quite a site to see!

5. Jive Printing

Jive is a creative printing company that prints across the state. They have clients in multiple industries and can handle large order sizes along with smaller ones. Accent Media opened in the historic region of Commins station and a trendy store popped up from that.

The digital print store at Jive has a qualified staff that is ready to take on any order that you have for your business needs.

 

Are you ready to get started bulk printing in Nashville? If so, contact us today!

We’d love to hear more about your project!

What’s the Difference Between Matte and Glossy?

Picking your style of paper is an important moment in the beginning stages of any printing process. Glossy and matte are the most common options but what’s the real difference and what’s right for you?

If you’ve been asking yourself, what’s the difference between matte and glossy?, we’ve got your answers.

What is Glossy Paper?

Just how it sounds, glossy is the shiny, almost reflective paper style. Several coatings are applied to the paper to give it its shiny look. The smooth finish enables colors to pop off the page and create a more refined look for photo edges. Glossy comes in high-gloss and semi-gloss. Glossy paper is best suited for: magazine covers, high-resolution photos and promotional materials.

What is Matte Paper? 

The removal of shine from paper results in a matte finish. A matte finish on paper results a texture great for graphics and photos of lots of details. Although you can print color on both types of paper, matte paper may not give the vibrancy of glossy paper. If you’re looking to accentuate the detail of a building or natural landscape, matte could be the perfect option. Matte is a great option for business cards and murals.   

The Print Authority has over 25 years of experience in printing. We also have graphic designers on staff to capture the vision in your mission statement. If you’re not sure whether to go with glossy or matte paper, we can help! Our expert staff can advise you on what will work best for you project. 

A unique feature of The Print Authority is our on demand system where printed materials are stored in an online portal so you can order branded materials as you need them. Contact us at (615) 468-2679 or by filling out the form to learn more about printing a company mission statement and other business items.

 

How to Choose a Graphic Design and Printing Company

When you’re looking for a new way to market your business or product it may be time to hire a graphic designer and printing company.  Since you want your company’s visuals to be the best of the best, you’ll want to choose a company that has a record of doing great, professional work. Here’s everything you need to know about how to choose a graphic design and printing company. 

What to look for in a graphic designer?

Experience. Choosing a designer or design team with years of experience is crucial. When a graphic designer has a proven track record of producing incredible images, you can be confident your vision for your company’s imagery is in good hands. 

Attention to detail. Take a look at their examples of previous work. Do you like their style? If the answer is no, you should probably keep looking. Graphic designers each have a unique style and preference for the way things look. Great graphic designers take pride in their designs and will pay attention to even the most minute details in a design. 

Personalized attention. The best graphic designers give personalized attention to each and every one of their projects. When you meet the designer, ask yourself, “Did he or she seem interested in learning about my vision for the business?” “Did he or she make an effort to truly understand what I’m looking for?” When you choose a graphic designer, the answer to both of those questions should be yes!

What to look for in a printing company?

Expertise. You want to work with a printing company that’s an expert in the printing field. The company should be able to explain the different types and uses of paper and other printing mediums to you. They should be able to demonstrate that they know what they’re doing.

Established processes. Look for a printing company that has established processes. This goes hand and hand with expertise!

Customization. A great printing company should have lots of customization options for their products. From the type of paper to the size of the prints, you’ll want to be able to customize your project to fit your unique vision. The printing company’s job is to make that vision come to life!

The Print Authority has a team of graphic designers on staff to capture your vision in all aspects of graphic design. We can help you find your brand colors. Additionally, we can create specific logo, flyer and handout designs!  Our team’s years of experience will make the design process easy for your business. Our team is ready to guide you in creating the right graphics to make your vision come to life.

A unique feature of The Print Authority is our on demand system where printed materials are stored in an online portal so you can order branded materials as you need them. Contact us at (615) 468-2679 or by filling out the form to learn more about printing a company mission statement and other business items.

 

5 Great Window Clings for Business

Let’s face it, a lot of time and energy goes into writing with window markers for your business. Getting the wording and overall look exactly right and the aching muscles afterward can be straining. That’s not even mentioning the clean up. To avoid the hassle and get your message across, say hello to window clings for business.

Window clings provide ease and consistency while acting as a tool to drive foot traffic to your business. They have a simple application and removal process that saves time and resources. Window clings can be customized to your business when working with an established printer. You can design your window clings with your business in mind with the color, size and text style.

But what exactly can use them for ? Check out five great window clings for business.

Window Clings For Business

window clings for businessProducts & Sales

Let everyone know about your products with window clings. Putting the service or product in your window adds another element to promoting what you do. They also provide the perfect opportunity to highlight your sale or special promotion. Sale window clings should have the date of the sale, what items it applies to and how much percent off.

Specialties

If your business boasts something different or special, your window is a great place to announce it. If you’re a certified B Corp or a sponsor of a charity, you may want to put up a window cling on your window or door to let the world know.

Catch Phraseswindow clings for business

Slogans or logos are great for window clings and ultimately, your brand. It will attract visitors and may even be a great background for your social media posts. Printing a set of smaller window clings with your logo is also great to give away to customers or sell in your store.

Hours

Using a window cling for your business hours is a must. It lets the world know when you’re open. If you change your business hours, a window cling can easily be removed and replaced with minimal downtime.

Grand Openings

What better way to keep your recent opening fresh than put it right in your windows? Putting up a window cling announcing your grand opening will bring the right kind of attention to your business. Before you put up your cling announcing your opening, you may even want to put up an “opening soon” window cling to give the heads up.  

Make your windows speak with window clings for business. Window clings are great for special events, grand openings, sales and for putting your business hours in your window. Get your logo everywhere by printing window clings for cars too. Have questions about window clings? Contact us at (615) 468-2679 or fill out our contact form.