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Don’t be Blue – Meet our new Print Angel

Posted on: January 19th, 2015 by Yvonne Gorman No Comments

Happy Monday! Or is it?

Today is ‘Blue Monday’ – no, it’s not the day we celebrate New Order’s fantastic 80’s hit, but it’s supposed to be the most depressing day of the year. Booooo!

Here at Essential Print Services we are even happier than ever because we have a brand new Print Angel. We are delighted to introduce Kathryn Towler!

KT Welcome E-shot Graphic

“Even when I attended the interview, I felt at home here. I am so thrilled at the prospect of becoming a Print Angel – I absolutely love print and so being able to contribute my ideas and enthusiasm is really exciting. Oh, and please call me Kat” commented Kathryn….sorry, Kat Towler.

“You have to be a certain calibre of person to be a Print Angel. You must have high standards, attention to detail and have the client’s best interests at heart, at ALL times. I’m confident that Kat has all these attributes and more! Can you remember what your first day at work felt like? Although we’re a friendly, tea-loving bunch, I encourage you to send Kat a message via email or Twitter @ArtworkAngel – I’m sure she’d appreciate the warmest welcome possible,” said Yvonne Gorman, who started Essential Print Services in 2011.

“The new addition to the team is yet another step in the right direction. Our expansion plan is coming to fruition and more positive print news will follow later in the year. I’d like to thank Print Angels; Laura Etheridge and Rebekah Lord for all their hard work and support – I’m really excited and energised about what 2015 has in store for us.”

So now we need your help to keep our Print Angels happy on this blue Monday. And there’s nothing they enjoy more than to help you with your print enquiries. So, email your ideas or quote requests over to admin@essentialprintservices.co.uk or call 01332 418377 and we’ll do the rest!

What to put on a business card

Posted on: January 9th, 2015 by Yvonne Gorman No Comments

What to put on a business card

“What do I need to put on my business cards?” is one of the most asked questions at Essential Print Services.

After 18 years of creating artwork files for print, I must have supplied thousands of business cards proofs.

Using this experience, here are my top ten tips on what to include on a business card.

1) Your Name

If you’re lucky enough to have credentials to display after your name, ensure they are not the same size as your name – this can look overbearing and confusing.

Depending on the type of industry you’re in, you may want to consider displaying your nickname too. This will show your company’s personality and could create a valuable talking point at networking events.

2) Title

OK, so you may not be brave enough to use a nickname, so have a funky title instead. Here at Essential Print Services our business cards show:

Yvonne Gorman – Print Evangelist

Again, this depends on your audience and customers. I know an accountancy firm that call themselves ‘Bean Counters’ which I think is really cool. But would a really serious client with no sense of humour appreciate that?

3) Logo

Think of your business card as the door to your company so display your logo somewhere prominent. People’s focus usually starts in the top left of a screen or document so that’s where your logo could be.

If your logo doesn’t explain what your company does, then ensure you make it clear somewhere on your business card – don’t leave your reader guessing. Spell it out for people.

4) Contact details

Firstly, ALWAYS include your website address somewhere, because if all else fails, people can visit your site for more information.

If you’ve given someone your business card, they’ll expect to get in contact with you directly and quickly using the information on your card. If you give them a landline, which takes them on a wild goose chase around your phone system, people may get frustrated and give up; ‘Press 1 for Sales, Press 2 for accounts etc. “Aarrghh I just want to speak with Bob! Give me Bob now!

Decide how you’d like new contacts to get in touch. If you prefer people to call your mobile, rather than your main landline, then just put your mobile number. If people want your landline, they can always find it on your website (make sure they can). If you really want to put your landline somewhere, then make your mobile number bigger and bolder.

If there is space, include your email address. If your email is really long because of your name or domain name or both, then display it small. By ensuring your website is displayed somewhere, if people struggle to read your email, they can refer to your website address, which should have the same domain name. If they’re not the same – why not?

Avoid using “joebloggs@hotmail.co.uk” with “www.joebloggsislovely.com”. This looks unprofessional. Ask yourself (or the company that hosts your email) why don’t I have, “joe@joebloggsislovely.com”?

More and more so, we are receiving business card files that have no physical address on them. This makes sense if people work from home and don’t want people turning up to their home whilst they’re making the tea in their Superwoman Pyjamas (sorry, that’s just me). But if you’re trying to create a perception that your company is more established, including a location at least would be useful.

So rather than: 2 Victoria Way, Pride Park, Derby DE24 8AN
You could try: Pride Park, Derby

Fax? What is a fax? Be honest, when did you last hear the fax machine ring? Of course, if you’re a solicitor, you may need to include it but if you can, then leave this off.

Do you use Social Media for your business? If yes, then include the identities of social media platforms on your business cards. Use the ones you actually use or receive the most engagement from your audience. There’s no point including platforms like ‘Pinterest’ or ‘Google+’ if you have no intention of using them.

Social media icons and identities can take up a lot of room. Your business cards are ‘prime advertising space’ – so use it wisely.

Here at Essential Print Services, we evaluated the return on investment from our social media activities and found that we had the least amount of engagement with our audience on Facebook. So when I was designing our new business cards and I had no space for a fifth social media identity, I knew which one I could afford to leave off.

I would advise you to include which account you want people to follow or ‘like’. Don’t leave it to chance. If you have a personal and business account, ensure people know to follow your business account. Do you really want a really important business prospect following your personal account and seeing what you did at the weekend?

How to display your social media identities on your business card. 

Here are the three most popular ones:

For Facebook, use the icon and then @essentialprint
Avoid using the whole URL (i.e. www.facebook.com/essentialprint), this will take up too much space.

For Twitter, use the icon and @essentialprint

For LinkedIn, use the icon and ‘Your Name’ or ‘YourName’. People will search for you anyway. This works if you’ve claimed your personal URL.

If you print the icons, don’t manipulate them. At the end of the day, they are someone else’s property. I know I wouldn’t appreciate it if someone changed my logo without permission.

Ensure these identities ARE correct and the ones you’ve definitely registered – don’t guess them. They could belong to someone else (heaven forbid).

Check that they all work before going to print. In fact, CHECK EVERYTHING BEFORE APPROVING YOUR PROOF.

5) Services & Products

Only if you have space, then include a handful of bullet points about how you can benefit customers. A short sentence should do the trick.

6) Font Size

I have seen text so small on a printed business card that I have struggled to read it. At the same token, I have received cards where the name of the person is HUGE but the details are teeny tiny. Ensure your font size depicts the hierarchy of its information but no so that it looks disproportionate.

Depending on the type of font you’re using, try not to use fonts no smaller than 7pt.

If you’d like us to supply a FREE business card template for your business card, which helps show the font hierarchy, simply get in touch.

Here are a few more tips that you may wish to consider;

7) Buy what you need

Buying more cards than you actually need is a false economy. You’re denying yourself the opportunity to refresh your cards and update information.

If you buy thousands, you run the risk of becoming bored and disenfranchised with the content, this may even discourage you from giving them out. A new finish or trend of cards may arrive and then you’re left with hundreds or thousands of cards made redundant because you want to keep up with the times.

If you’re a start-up company purchasing your very first set of business cards, you may want to keep volumes low because of price. I’d recommend buying 500 cards for your first set. You’ll be amazed how many you’ll get through. Supportive family and friends will want a few each and before you know it, you’re placing a re-order.

Whenever you want to change the look or material of your business cards – always ask to see a sample of the card.

Once you’ve had your new cards printed, be sure to obtain honest feedback from people. You may think your new cards are the bee’s knees but is your message getting across correctly?

8) Material

You’ve set out what your card will look like, you’ve worked out how many you’ll need, now think about what type of card you’d like.

Our most popular is 400gsm weight with a matt laminated coating both sides. This makes the card durable and helps against them becoming dog-eared in handbags and pockets.

The price of Spot UV business cards has reduced dramatically in recent years and here at Essential Print Services, we can offer Spot UV on one side for just £25 +VAT more (for 500 cards). Spot UV is a shiny bit of film that can be applied to particular areas of graphics and images. UV works well when it is applied to the dark backgrounds. On light backgrounds, it is not very noticeable. Spot UV doesn’t work very when its applied to thin, small text either.

Here at Essential Print Services HQ, we LOVE round corners. Probably a bit too much. We can offer to round off the corners of your business cards for as little as £15 extra +VAT (for 500 cards).  We can round corner all the corners, just one, two or three! Or have a mixture. For more information about round cornered business cards, read out popular blog post, “Give your full colour printing the edge”.

If you’d like to see samples of any of the above materials, or would like a price list, simply call the Print Angels on 01332 418377 for a FREE sample pack.

9) There’s always two sides to every story… or a business card

Choose double sided, every time. It will give you the space you need to make the maximum impact and get your message across. Use surplus space to portray your corporate identity.

10) You only get one chance to make a first impression…

…so make it count. Choose quality business cards from a quality printer and Essential Print Services can certainly help you with this. We will help you decide what will be best for your image and budget.

Think about how you will hand out your cards. Will you hand it over considerately and take time over the exchange? Or just throw them out like confetti? Every aspect of this first encounter is crucial and will say a lot about you, and your business.

Invest in a decent business card holder. Giving out business cards that have been in your pocket for a while, that may be damaged and have bits of suspicious fluff on it, just isn’t good enough.

Look after your cards so that each one looks like it’s hot off the press. You must be proud to hand out any printed literature, especially your business cards so buy cards that you can hand out without hesitation. They could be the best investment you make.

If you need any further assistance with your business cards, or any print for that matter, chat with us online, call us on 01332 418377 or email info@essentialprinting.co.uk

 

Updated: 5th March 2018

From Derby to Downing Street

Posted on: January 8th, 2015 by Yvonne Gorman 2 Comments

Read how, Essential Print Services’ Owner, Yvonne Gorman found herself in front of one the world’s most famous front doors:

THE HARDER I WORK, THE LUCKIER I GET

It was a cold, rainy miserable Sunday evening. I had a really tough week at work.

I was scrolling through twitter and spotted something about ‘Small Business Saturday’.

It read: “Email your business profile for a chance to be part of the first Small Business Saturday 100”  

But I was so tired – did I really want to get my laptop out after working on it all week……but WHAT IF?

WHAT IF I sent the email and I became one of the first SBS 100?

From that email sent to the SBS Team, I stayed in contact with them. I volunteered help with promoting the initiative; after all, I had plenty of followers online, for Essential Print Services & PridePark.net. I could use all that collateral to help tell others about this fantastic initiative too.

ESSENTIAL PRINT SERVICES IS CHOSEN TO BE ONE OF THE FIRST SBS 100!

A few days later, I received an email to say my company had been chosen – GREAT – but what did it mean? Turns out, they would feature 1 business per day for 100 days as the SBS 100! If anything, I predicted we might get some extra online followers. Maybe an enquiry or two. And that’s all I expected.

So WHAT IF there was some way that all 100 businesses could talk to each other? So I created a LinkedIn group and invited other SBS 100 businesses to communicate.  Yes, it created extra work for me but WHAT IF people networked with each other online and that created opportunities for them?  When the SBS tour bus visited Nottingham, I thought I had better visit them and introduce myself.

A few days after that, I receive another email to say, “the SBS 100 had been invited to afternoon tea at Downing Street”. WHAT!

FROM DERBY TO DOWNING STREET
Essential Print Services' visits Downing Street
During my amazing visit, I met a whole host of people that day; Shadow Business Secretary – Chukka Umunna, Minister for Skills and Enterprise – Matt Hancock, and Chancellor of the Exchequor – George Osbourne.

In January last year, I was asked by Marketing Derby to be a panellist for their Annual Business Event at Derby Theatre. I believe if I hadn’t of got involved with the various initiatives like SBS, like PridePark.net, they wouldn’t have even known who Yvonne Gorman was, let alone ask me to be up there representing Derby’s business community.

ESSENTIAL PRINT SERVICES LAUNCHES SBS 2014

Montage

Out of the original SBS 100, seven businesses were asked to exhibit at the British Library to help launch SBS 2014 and Essential Print Services was one of them. I was told that Mr Umunna would be there again along with other ministers and dignitaries. I was asked to go on stage during the event and explain how SBS has benefitted my company.

There’s a video of this interview on a previous blog.

When I watch it back, I think, “Gosh that’s me up there talking to lots of really important people! How amazing!”

Since then, I’ve been invited to be a keynote speaker at various local business engagements, which has been an absolute thrill and an amazing experience.

ESSENTIAL PRINT SERVICES HELPS TO HOST SBS AT DERBY CITY COUNCIL

Yvonne from Essential Print Services exhibiting at Small Business Saturday

Just when I thought the publicity from the event had died down, in December I was asked to be a panellist for Derby City Council’s very first Small Business Saturday event. It was a real honour.

And that’s how reading one tweet and sending one email on a Sunday night, led to all that. That’s how spotting one opportunity, threw open so many doors.

So the next time you doubt your ability. The next time you know of a better way. The next time someone tells you – you can’t do that? The next time you have a glimpse of your dreams.

Ask yourself; WHAT IF?


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If you need PRINT, you've come to the right place.

Choose Essential Print Services to take care of your print requirements.

We are a printing company based on Pride Park in Derby and we pride ourselves on making professionals look professional, by offering competitive prices, exceptional customer service and spectacular print. Our 'Customer Reviews' show just a few of our many satisfied customers.

From business cards, brochures and leaflets, through to folders, flyers, banners and promotional items, we can handle anything from conventional full-colour print to some of the most bizarre print requests.

If you need a printer, who will look after you, every step of the way, call 01332 418377.

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If you have an urgent enquiry out of office hours please, call 07809 361708.

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