Successful printed materials just don’t happen

Meeting your print materials expectations is all about details and follow-up.shipping printed materials

Some time last year I wrote a blog on customer services entitled, What is Excellent Customer Service?  The answer to that question is: It’s the company’s ability to consistently and constantly exceed the expectations of its customers.

Printing services attain it by maintaining a good relationship with customers, being honest, understanding their customers better, and comprehending the specifics of issues that arise. It also encompasses double—no, make that triple—checking everything you’re doing for them, and being available days, evenings, even weekends if necessary, to take calls and answer emails. There’s one other thing that’s an important part of delivering excellent customer service. It’s so significant that I’ve decided to carry that conversation further to discuss it in this blog— shipping materials and delivery expectations.

Why is shipping so important?

On time delivery of your printed materials is an essential aspect of customer service by your commercial printer. Which is why you need to look for a printing partner who can deliver exceptional attention to detail, from preproduction to your door or on the conference floor.

What does “on-time and delivered safely” mean?

Just about every company brochure and website will claim that your packages will be delivered safely and on time. However it is my experience that not every company’s idea of “on time and delivered safely” means the same thing. It reminds me of the word “quality”.  Everyone uses the word “quality” but what does it really mean for each individual company? It means a lot of different things, and not all of them are necessarily beneficial to you. The same can be said about on time and delivered safely. However, in the business of printing and delivering printed materials it had better mean exactly what the company and you have agreed to from the outset—your printed materials will be shipped on such and such date and they will arrive on such and such date at the predetermined location, no ands, ifs or buts about it.

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The show must go on, and your printed materials better be there when it does.

Shipping printed collateral marketing materials to a show, event or conference on time is vital. To ensure that nothing ever falls through the cracks, the process and the promise of shipping and receiving from your printer needs to be more than just accepting that your delivery instructions are correct and sending you a tracking number, then leaving it up to you to trace and receive your materials. That way of doing business may be okay if delivery isn’t critical, but in the case of most business dealings, time and place are what it’s all about, and need to be completely checked and agreed upon from the get-go and nothing left to chance. Most printing companies get entrenched in the technicalities of the job, but fall short on the equally important task of meeting your shipping material requirements.

Shortcuts lead to shortcomings.

A great work ethic and a willingness to do what needs to be done, minus the shortcuts taken by far too many companies is what sets printers apart. Possessing the ability to handle surprises and react at a moment’s notice is also key to receiving your printed materials on time and to the correct person and address.

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