PrintRocks 2022

CP wins Best in Division, and Brenda Monkewicz is Recognized with a Hickey Picker Award at 2022 PrintROCKS!

PrintRocks 2022

Consolidated Press is thrilled to announce its recent awards at the 2022 PrintROCKS! Competition, including Best in Division, the Hickey Picker, and more.

Our very own Vice President and General Manager, Brenda Rossman Monkewicz, was presented with the prestigious Hickey Picker award. People considered for the award have longevity in the print industry, a stellar reputation among peers and customers, and significant contributions to the growth and sustainability of print media and production. They are dedicated to helping others learn and volunteer their time and talents with the PIASC. 

Brenda brings over three decades of experience in the print industry, and is keenly focused on CP’s employees and customers. Brenda comes by her affinity and understanding for print honestly—she was born into a family of printers. She says she didn’t go to daycare—instead, she went to the hand assembly department. In her spare time, you’ll find Brenda relaxing with her family, traveling, boating, and rooting for the Seahawks.

At the same awards ceremony, Consolidated Press was awarded Best of Division for printers with 51-100 employees for our work on the Quail Lodge 2021 Magazine. The PrintROCKS event recognizes quality print production in the Northwest region.

We also received the following recognitions:

Print Rocks 2022 AwardsBest of Magazines:

1st Place
Quail Lodge

 

 

2nd Place 

BLOOM Growing Wonder

 

 

 

Print Rocks 2022 Freehub3rd Place 

Freehub Vermont Photo Book

 

 

 

Hosted by The Pacific Printing Industries Association, now PIASC, the PrintROCKS! competition celebrates the outstanding work of printing companies in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Alaska, Hawaii, Montana, and Utah. Learn more about the PrintROCKS! event by visiting: http://www.printrocks.org/

Catalog Trends

Print Catalogs Are A Cost-Effective Marketing Tool That Consumers Enjoy

Catalogs are here to stay. As they have evolved over the last decade into high-end booklets packed with the power of story, catalogs prove again and again to be an indispensable part of the retail and wholesale marketing mix.

What’s behind the continued use of catalogs?

Skyrocketing online advertising costs. 

In 2021, a large US marketing agency reported to Forbes that online advertising had skyrocketed for their clients—primarily big-name retailers. Cost per 1,000 viewers (CPM) increased by 89% in April, 69% in May, and 42% in June across such platforms as Meta (previously known as Facebook), Google, Apple, Pinterest, and Instagram. AdSkate reported in May 2022 that costs have simply kept rising. 

  • Meta’s CPM has increased 61% year over year, averaging $17.60.
  • TikTok’s CPM has increased 185% year over year, averaging $9.40/CPM.
  • Google’s programmatic display CPM has increased 75% year over year. Meanwhile, search ad CPC (cost-per-click) increased by 14% year over year.
  • Instagram’s CPM has increased 23% year over year.

And costs per click tend to increase further during the fourth quarter, which is crucial to retailers’ bottom line. Companies can’t be sure they will get their money’s worth from online advertising, so they turn to a more diverse marketing mix.

Catalogs ‘fill a retail therapy niche.’

Last holiday season, NBC News reported that consumers were weary of being on their phones and computers after pandemic restrictions rounded a second year. Older consumers enjoyed the nostalgia of grabbing a catalog or two out of the mailbox box and relaxing into the curated experience rather than searching online for something. Younger consumers tend to appreciate a high-quality catalog with some personality, a clear values message, and engaging storytelling.

Hamilton Davison, American Catalog Mailers Association president, said millennials “have an affinity for flipping pages”—much like shopping for LPs or browsing for vintage furniture. “One of the big surprises is that millennials find great value in catalogs,” he said to NBC News, citing recent research into catalog trends. “The internet feels too much like work.”

Catalogs that function as gift guides, contain rich editorial content, or appear similar to lifestyle magazines tend to increase their popularity.

How can today’s retailers create a catalog that pays?

Integrate technology.

Smart retailers use a multi-channel marketing approach, which means that they integrate online, in-store, and print marketing products, each to complement the others.

Print catalogs make it easy to ingrate technology and personalize to the recipient simultaneously. Catalogs will either send people to the store or online to buy. Make the online bridge seamless and powerful by incorporating personalized URLs or QR codes for online shoppers to take them directly to your website while providing information about their buying habits. 

Be sure both your online and brick-and-mortar stores are stocked with the items in your catalog, and consider a strong BOPIS/BOPAC/BORIS plan for the holiday season. Consumer expectations around Buy Online Pick-up In Store, Buy Online Pick-up At Curbside, and Buy Online Return In Store are only increasing. Your catalog can provide a gateway and detailed information about these services, further easing the shopping experience.

Above all, be flexible.

With continued paper shortages, you may find that to get your catalog out on time, you have to pivot from an all-encompassing 100-page book detailing every product to a 36-page booklet highlighting categories, seasonal products, or personalized content for the reader. You may have to consider changing the paper grade or the finish if certain stock becomes available or runs short. Be ready to pivot on the details so the bigger picture can move forward and out to your customers—a strong, eye-catching print catalog that sells your products for you. 

The good news is Consolidated Press is in great shape and well-stocked. We are also experienced in working closely to make materials and services swaps that work for the product and never compromise quality. Mailing is a snap for us, and we have access to the best rates available.

Whatever your catalog plans may be, we can help you print and mail the product that’s perfect for your customers.

With our efficient presses and professional staff, we can help you steward your resources while creating important print products that benefit everyone. Let us help you—reach out today!

Elections and Print

Clear and accurate print materials help elections stay secure and accessible

Free and fair elections are the bedrock of American politics. Communicating in print has played a crucial role since the first one in 1788, and it continues to make the elections process secure and accessible to the entire voting public.

Election materials need to be clear, accurate and on-time

In the Northwest, we use mail-in ballots which, coupled with voters’ pamphlets, afford voters the time to sit down at their kitchen table and become educated on each candidate and issue while filling out their ballot. Accurate and clear printing means an accurate and clear message. Smudges, misalignment, missing pages and improper binding can all contribute to misinformation—particularly for those who are disabled or do not have easy access to the internet, including elderly and under-resourced adults.

Voters’ pamphlets are printed, addressed and mailed directly to voters in time to make informed decisions. Using a reputable printer for both printing and mailing services is key to proper list management and on-time mailing to registered voters. Any mistake or delay means a vote may be cast late or not at all. 

A large printer like Consolidated Press can save money on mailing in several ways. We provide volume postage discounts by analyzing your files and providing postal logistics planning and strategy. We deliver mail direct to USPS bulk mail centers for faster delivery and postage discounts, and ink-jet addressing occurs in-line on our stitchers to save you time and money.

Printed campaign communications help sway voters

Taking part in our election process means being able to convey our specific ideals, opinions and plans to our constituents. Whether that is through flyering, print and direct mail, or canvassing, there’s a personal touch with print that you don’t get with digital communication. Besides that, print–even print and mail—is much cheaper and better trusted than television spots and outdoor advertising.

After a contentious race in Virginia, the USPS teamed up with the American Association of Political Consultants to ask voters about their sources for political outreach and information. The results revealed the power of direct mail for local campaigns.

Nearly 70% said mail sent to their homes was the most credible political outreach technique. Sixty-six percent of female voters, 56% of millennial voters, 57% of nonwhite voters, and 69% of college-age voters trusted direct mail the most. The survey also revealed direct mail in the top three most persuasive channels.

In addition, most people visit their mailboxes every day. They have positive associations with mail vs. unrecognizable digital campaign messages that are frustrating because of pop-up ads, potential privacy issues, and frequency. 

Reliability is key to the civic process

The printing industry has been in a tough spot since the pandemic started. In the early days, working together in a building was nearly impossible. Later, worker shortages slowed commercial printers across the nation. Add to that supply chain tangles and paper shortages, and presses were in a constant state of catch-up.

Today, Consolidated Press is completely staffed up and enjoying a surplus of paper. Our suppliers and vendors are all coming back up to speed and are at pre-Covid turnaround times. 

All of these factors add up to a reliable, cost-effective process suitable for government budgets and responsive to tight deadlines on the campaign trail.

With our efficient presses and professional staff, we can help you steward your resources while creating essential print products that benefit everyone. Let us help you educate voters—reach out today!

Nonprofits Use these powerful ways to engage stakeholders with print

Use these powerful ways to engage your stakeholders with print

Just like organizations in any other sector, nonprofits mean business. The bottom line for nonprofits may not be shareholder returns or stock prices, but their focus on social good means bringing in money and support is a high priority every day.

Volunteers bring in an average of $24 for every hour they donate, and nonprofits generate $64.6 billion in annual revenues in Washington alone. The nonprofit sector is the third-largest workforce sector in the country after manufacturing and retail. Nonprofits employ over 11 million people across the U.S. and make up nearly 10% of the workforce in Washington State. 

In other words, every nonprofit has many stakeholders, and each is doing its part to advance the vision. Integrated print products can help nonprofits create a professional brand that appeals to their ideal donors, supports volunteers in their efforts, and rallies employees behind the mission.

Here are just a few ways nonprofits can use print to their advantage.

Direct mail appeals (to everyone).

Direct mail continues to be opened at a much higher rate than email, and personalized direct mail is even more powerful. With variable data printing, you can make a big impact before the donor even opens the envelope or flips over the postcard.

If a donor has given previously, thank them on the outside of the envelope for being a supporter—or refer to something like their support has provided.

For example, if a donor has given $10 per month for 12 months to a food pantry, let them know they provided meals for a family of five all year—on the outside of the envelope. On the inside, let them know how their increased donation could benefit even more people. You could also use this technique on two sides of a postcard.

Direct mail can also be a powerful motivator for past volunteers. People like knowing they’ve been missed and are remembered for their generosity. Reaching out and sharing how they have contributed to a common cause lets them know you value their time and encourages them to volunteer again.

The long read is back.

Personalized content coupled with the extended tactile experience of a magazine or annual report can have a catalyzing effect.

Nonprofits are required to publish annual reports. Specific information must be made available to stakeholders in an accessible format each year. But the sky is the limit when it comes to additional content that wows, engages, and leaves a lasting impression on stakeholders.

  • Tell a compelling story. In fact, tell as many as you can. The beauty of nonprofit work is that it’s changing lives. So tell these life-changing stories in your annual reports to showcase the critical work your volunteers and donors are making possible.
  • Invest in photography. Writers may protest, but a picture is still worth 1,000 words. Prioritize photography at events and programs throughout the year to paint a realistic picture of how far your dollars are going and where the gaps are.
  • Go big. Magazines and publications with compelling content tend to stay around the house for a long time and be read by more people. Turn your annual report into a magazine that stakeholders look forward to all year long. By using a high-efficiency quality commercial printer like Consolidated Press, you’ll use your resources wisely, while projecting abundance and confidence.
  • Integrate with online components. Print and online products exponentially increase each other’s impact. Use QR codes to link to video presentations, podcasts, or online fundraisers in your annual report. Direct people to expanded photo galleries and transcripts of the interviews for the stories you included.  People are used to online transactions – give them an easy way to connect and act immediately. 

Nonprofits are truly the bedrock of social good in the Pacific Northwest. Showcase your programming and engage your beneficiaries, employees, and volunteers with meaningful print products like reports, signage, direct mail, and brochures that tell your story.

With our efficient presses and responsive staff, we can help you steward your resources while creating stunning print products that convert. Let us help you crush your goals—reach out today!

Government Printing

The Power of the (Printing) Press to Make Information Equitable, Timely, and Useful to Everyone

Government Agencies and Municipalities Rely on Print

Municipalities and government agencies produce a lot of print publications, and for a good reason—they are responsible for educating citizens. By law, they need to make certain publications available to everyone, regardless of whether they have internet access. 

Think voter’s pamphlets and, in Washington state, the ballots themselves. Municipal recreation center program catalogs. Transit schedules, walking maps. Driver’s guides. There are fliers and brochures at every public office in dozens of languages represented in any major city. Transit Schedule

Governments are also required to seek citizen input on new developments and major projects. They require diversity and volume of input from citizens on projects such as bridge construction, new highways, and public spaces that are coming online. Zoning changes and redevelopments need public buy-in to move forward. A public involvement team is often brought in specifically to do this outreach, and printed communications or publications are essential.

Direct Mail Reaches Each Household

Direct mail is also vital for municipalities and contractors specializing in government outreach. Each year, updated recycling brochures are mailed out to every person who gets services. Changes in water, gas and electricity rates come through the mail. Every homeowner is mailed a value assessment on their house periodically. 

Recently, the pandemic has compelled governments to disseminate critical public health information to huge populations as quickly as possible. 

All of this information is printed to reach the most diverse and complete group of constituents.

Consolidated Press Specializes in Government Projects for Several Reasons

  • We have enormous capacity on our web presses. We can run thousands of pieces in a short period of time. Because we work at scale, we can nimbly produce essential publications very cost-effectively right when they are needed.
  • We are experts at getting your direct mail to citizens and employees quickly and inexpensively. We create and mail announcement postcards, parks and recreation catalogs, visitor’s guides, regional newsletters, and more. We can work with you on paper choices and other tweaks that create a lighter, less expensive, yet attractive and useful piece.
  • Some pieces are just workhorses, and they need to be durable for months or years to come. Books, manuals, catalogs, guides, directories, curricula, and collections of regulations can all be perfect bound into books of any size at Consolidated Press. Optical cameras on our presses confirm quality and placement, so even nondescript projects look professional and hold up for years.
  • Even public documents deserve their privacy. We understand that government information is sensitive and timely. We protect your information from public view until its designated release time and treat each project as highly confidential.

We believe in the power of the (printing) press to make information equitable, timely, and useful to everyone. Contact us today to start reaching your citizens tomorrow.

Employees

Three powerful ways employees shape the Consolidated Press culture

Consolidated Press is growing, and we couldn’t be more excited to add additional like-minded employees on various shifts to our bustling print floor. We are building a solid growth strategy and a strong company culture, and we recognize our greatest assets—our employees.

As we seek both experienced and entry-level employees ready to fast-forward their careers in print and graphics, we asked our staff to let us in on why they love Consolidated Press and who their ideal co-workers would be.

At Consolidated Press, every day is different. 

Print is one of the most deep-rooted creative professions, and it continues to evolve into the future. New technology helps us innovate and exceed our customer’s expectations on each job. Our exceptional clients challenge us to keep growing with each new project. 

We bring books, publications, manuals, catalogs, directories, brochures, and newsletters to life. We print, bind, mail, and ship.

No two days are the same, and that’s how we like it.

There’s no such thing as too much fun.

The Consolidated culture is one of a kind. We have been working hard at evolving our company and creating solid strategies for growth, and we are seeking employees to help us build into the future. And we hope you like to laugh! Besides being talented, well trained, loyal, and innovative, we want to enjoy what we do each day. 

You can fast-forward your career AND enjoy it at Consolidated Press.

We are together, as a team.

At Consolidated Press, we roll up our sleeves every day together as a team. Remote working is great…but it is for other people. 

Our employees team up with leadership to innovate and drive success at two convenient Seattle-Tacoma locations

But it’s not just a feel-good environment, it’s a stay-balanced workplace. Overtime is available if we choose it, yet we’re empowered to take our well-deserved vacations and holidays without burdening our colleagues. Management and staff work together to create teams that thrive.

With robust hands-on training, competitive pay, growth opportunities, and hard-to-beat benefits, you will fast forward your creative career at Consolidated Press.

 

Click Here to check out our career page and learn more about working with Consolidated Press.

Reading Resurgence

Four ways publishers can capitalize on a reading resurgence in turbulent times

Heading into 2022, book publishers are riding a worldwide resurgence of interest in printed books and reading.

At the same time, they are facing a shortage of paper and distribution networks that are crucial to putting those books in their readers’ hands.

Many paper mills have pivoted to packaging, the manufacturing workforce is mid-shuffle, and global logistics disruptions continue to slow shipments of supplies and end products.

Since we specialize in book printing, we want to share with you some of the ways publishers are capitalizing on the demand for printed books, while managing the challenges of printing them.

Print large runs in smaller batches.

Publishers are exploring a stock replenishment model that reprints smaller batches more frequently. Publishers will still meet—or even generate—consumer demand with a plan to roll out an entire run, but in increments that keep prices low and distribution steady.

Publishers sell directly to consumers.

Direct-to-consumer sales are nothing new, but it is easier than ever before to pass on retail sales, which can take up to 40% of the cover price. Using an omnichannel marketing approach, including social media, blogs, websites, and author following, publishers can create a community of readers clamoring for their books.

Experiment with size, shape, and stock.

Consolidated Press can publish a huge array of sizes and shapes. Depending on how your book is being distributed, you may want to try a different size or shape to keep costs low on shipping. In an era where it’s on-trend to buck the trend, you might find that an offbeat look sells more books—especially if it doesn’t need to sit neatly on a retail shelf. The same goes for stock. While CP has the resources and relationships to keep a range of paper stocks on hand, we can offer suggestions for substitutions when one is low or another that might be less expensive.

Expect the unexpected—and tell everyone else to as well.

Today’s mantra is communication, communication, communication. In all manufacturing sectors in 2022, releases, roll-outs, and launches will be…squishy. For book publishers, that means clearly managing expectations for your readers, clients, and authors. At Consolidated Press, our value is in reliable runs on a large scale. So, on our side, clear communication means letting you know exactly what supplies we have available when you can expect to get your project on the press, and if there are changes in cost due to continuing increases in paper and pulp prices. We are not in the business of surprising our customers.

While we recognize how much fluctuation there is in our industry right now, we are in the business of solutions—effective solutions in print, especially for publishers and manufacturers.

Contact us today to get started on your next book, manual, magazine, or catalog. Our power puts us ahead of the pack.

CatalogsInAction

The Benefits of B2B Catalogs

If you are a manufacturer or wholesale business, you know getting your product into the right hands is vital to your sales. One way to get a buyer to notice your product is to put a catalog mailed directly in their hands. Like in the B2C space, B2B catalogs are tangible content pieces that have a long shelf life, can build a brand, help cross-sell, and offer an overall picture of what is available.

What You See

Because a printed catalog remains in someone’s sight, the brand, products, and other details stay on the buyer’s mind. Especially for manufacturers and wholesalers who offer many different products in larger quantities, a catalog with comprehensive information makes it easier for a buyer to make wise decisions. Instead of clicking through tabs on a web browser, they can enjoy the convenience of having a single piece to view.

In addition, printed catalogs are more likely to be retained for future reference. Suppose a customer likes an in-stock product but is interested in a different size or color. In this case, the seller can quickly refer to the catalog rather than attempting to navigate a website.

Another advantage to a print catalog is that the visual elements help build brand recognition. The way the photographs are styled, the colors and fonts used, even the finish and weight of the paper, create positive brand associations.

Finally, a print catalog shows commitment. The planning, design, and distribution of catalogs assure your audience that you invest in quality and aren’t afraid to promote your business and showcase your products in the best light.

What You Get

Whether you are a buyer who is sourcing inventory for a storefront, a construction company looking for building materials, or a manufacturer locating replacement parts, the experience of browsing a catalog is more immersive than scanning multiple websites. As the digital space becomes noisier with pop-up ads, email notifications, and social media alerts, having curated content in one place lets the viewer discover products and potentially uncover new items that may not have been generally found with an online search.

SampleCatalogsImg Wholesalers and manufacturers can use catalogs to inform businesses that they have options. With delays in the supply chain disrupting inventory, the arrival of a wholesaler’s printed piece can open the door to new relationships. On the flip side, showcasing your product in print can help move excess inventory from your shelves to where it is needed most.

Let Consolidated Press help you open those doors and move those products. Whether you need to provide a business customer a quick and simple directory of parts, or you want to feature beautiful goods in quality imagery and special paper finishings, Consolidated Press can help you explore cost-effective options. We also specialize in one-stop printing, binding, and mailing, for an end-to-end process that will streamline distribution, getting your pages where they are needed most.

PrintROCKS! Awards Fender Poster

CONSOLIDATED PRESS IS AWARDED WITH 10 PRINTROCKS! AWARDS

Consolidated Press is thrilled to announce its recent awards at the 2021 PrintROCKS! competition. We were awarded Best of Division for printers with 51 – 100 employees for our work to produce the Advantage Mailing / Pearl Jam / Fender Booklet and Poster.

PrintROCKS! Awards - Fender Booklet PrintROCKS! Awards

In addition to our Best of Division Award, we received the following recognitions:

Best of…UW Clamor Literary Journal

Books, Book Jackets, and Diaries
Offset: Sheetfed 40” and larger
UW Publication A7597 Clamor Literary Journal 2021

 

Magazines and Magazine Inserts
Offset: Sheetfed 40” and larger
Freehub Media Craft Magazine

 

Second Place

Brochures, Booklets, and Flyers
Offset: Sheetfed 40” and larger
Western Washington University Jeopardy Magazine 2021

CatalogsBarn Pros Catalog
Offset: Sheetfed 40” and larger
Barn Pros

Books, Book Jackets, and Diaries
Offset: Sheetfed 40” and larger
Western Washington University Jeopardy Magazine 2021/JEOPARDY MAGAZINE

 

Third Place 

Catalogs
Offset: Sheetfed 40” and larger
Mallory Paint Catalog

Magazines and Magazine Inserts
Offset: Sheetfed 40” and larger
Charles Wright Academy TIES Magazine

Honorable Mention

Brochures, Booklets, and Flyers
Offset: Sheetfed 40” and larger
MOHAI Q4 Programs and Events Brochure

Books, Book Jackets, and Diaries
Offset: Sheetfed 40” and larger
Bloom Journal

Hosted by The Pacific Printing Industries Association, now PIASC, the PrintROCKS! competition celebrates the outstanding work of printing companies in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Alaska, Hawaii, Montana, and Utah. Learn more about the PrintROCKS! event by visiting: http://www.printrocks.org/

Consolidated Press Charitable Giving - Northwest Harvest

Join Consolidated Press in a low-key, high reward giving campaign this season

It almost goes without saying: Consolidated Press is here today because of our customers and their customers.

You are our whole story.

We appreciate you every day. We dream up ways to express our gratitude. Our team shows it by getting your work done expertly, on time, and within budget. We treat everyone who walks in with respect and dignity.

This holiday season, Consolidated Press is pushing ourselves outside our own story. We’ve persisted through the last two years, and we’re looking at a bright 2022.

But not everyone is. For many, this pandemic is not even close to over. And we know that a safe and thriving community is better for all of us.

The pandemic’s footprint is massive, but together, we can fill in the gap.

That’s why this year we are making a corporate donation on behalf of our clients, employees, and corporation to Northwest Harvest this December.

Northwest Harvest supports a statewide network of 375 food banks, meal programs, and high-needs schools. What’s more, they work for real transformation by seeking to remove barriers within our food and economic systems permanently.

We’re so proud to support this Seattle-based nonprofit.

We know that our clients support important causes and organizations throughout the region. We invite you to join us in two ways:

✔️ Support Northwest Harvest by making a donation that fits your business.
OR
✔️ Make a holiday gift to a nonprofit that is a meaningful match for your company’s values and culture.
THEN
✔️ Drop us a line by Dec. 15 to tell us what organization your company gave to this season, and—if you have an extra minute—tell us why. In December, we’ll publish a post featuring all of our “Friends in Philanthropy.” Tell us your story at sales@consolidatedpress.com.

Together, we can make a big leap forward into 2022. Bringing others along with us makes the ride that much sweeter for everyone.