Postcard Printing Key Terms
Understand postcard printing key terms for better direct mail marketingIf you are a business owner who wants to market your business with a direct mail postcard, then it is necessary for you to understand postcard printing key terms. The printing process is a very complex business, and extends from pre-press to printing. To get the desired printing result, you need to set up your files the right way.
Even if you decide to have the pre-press done by the printing company, you still need to understand the process. When working with a printer, the client needs to sign off approval on everything.
File specifications and file requirements
Process/CMYK color vs. spot colorProcess colors describe the mix of cyan (C), magenta (M), yellow (Y) and black (K), needed to produce color. Spot color, in contrast, is the use of individual, exact colors. The former is used for full color images, such as a photograph. The latter is used for images less than four colors, or used in addition to process color, if a logo calls for exact colors that process color cannot match.
Varnishings, or coatingsVarnishing is used to add a finish to the look of your image, and protects the ink coverage of your image. Varnishing comes in many finishes, including glossy and matte. Additionally, spot varnishing can be used to create special effects.
Blueline, digital and matchprint proofA proof is a replica of the finished product. If a couple of colors are used, then a blueline proof is offered with accompanying color swatches. Bluelines are also used to check for design accuracy and placement. With a full-color job, a digital or matchprint color proof is offered for approval.
StockThis refers to the paper you use for postcard printing. Stock comes in both text and cover options, as well as various colors and textures, although cover stock is used for postcard printing. There are certain weight classes set by the postal service; the heavier the stock and larger its size, the more it will cost to mail.
Digital printingThis is the method of printing used to print a small order of postcards. Digital printing is more cost effective for small runs because it requires less setup than a full printing press.
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