Ladies and Gentlemen, Marcus Brown surely needs no introduction. Germany's most Internet Famous Printer. Stop laughing at the back, he wrote one of the most popular Guest Posts ever on this blog 'Green(ish) Printing.'
Marcus works at Peschke Druck in Munich. Let's finish this week and this series with his advice on how to deal with your printer in a recession. Read it, it's good.
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Printers in general, at least in the countries that I have worked in, tend make the same mistake when the market takes a nose dive; they drop their pricing and flood the market with cheap print, which is a short term win for the people procuring print but fatal for the printing company.
So my recession advice to any printing company would be;
- Keep your pricing up (once you go down, it’s nearly impossible to get your pricing back up again – and you drag the rest of the market with you).
- Try and reduce external costs (that’s you – getting invoices that you need to pay) and form alliance network with complimentary businesses that you trust. If you have deliverables that you need to procure (paper, plates, ink) try and get them through your alliance network and leverage your consolidated spend.
- Concentrate on doing a good job and make sure you have tools in place that ensure that you and your people are doing a good job. In a time when margins are really tight an error can break your neck.
- Get out and talk to your clients. Talk to them a lot.
- Do not dump your pricing. Ever.
If you’re buying print, I have some advice too:
- Keep your eye out for printers who are panicking.
- Always ask for a detailed breakdown of the costs and keep your eye on how much the printers are asking for paper. Always do this. Always.
- If you get a quote in that is 40%-60% cheaper than any other printer you’ve asked, ask yourself why and ask yourself if it is possible to have a long term relationship with this supplier.
- Build up a supplier network based on trust, quality and price.
- Get out and talk to your printers. Talk to them a lot.
- Do not support price dumping. Ever.