Producing Brochures? Size Really Matters!

Printing brochures? Size really matters!

When it comes to brochures and other promotional documents, size really does matter. Along with the design and finish, the size and format of printed sales and marketing documents has an impact from a marketing perspective. A carefully selected size could make your printed marketing piece literally stand out, making it both different and memorable when you get it right. Once you’ve accomplished that, half the marketing battle is already won.

Marketers have only one chance to make a good first impression

For these reasons, many brochure and marketing literature designers will often consider sizes outside of the bog-standard A4 that we see so often. This consideration will almost be part of the design process itself, in fact. After all, marketers and designers have only one chance to make a good first impression.

It’s a very tricky balance, however. While format, looks and size play an important part in the overall impact of a printed brochure or marketing piece, it’s all too easy to stray into unnecessary extra expense if it’s not fully thought through.

A balance between design, impact, cost & ultimately R.O.I.

The approximate size for your brochure or marketing piece may simply be steered by the volume of content it needs to contain. If that’s substantial, then clearly you may have to choose one of the larger document sizes, or at the very least go with a smaller size with a greater number of pages if you don’t mind the document or brochure being fairly thick — but, as we’ll see below, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Conversely, if your brochure or sales piece doesn’t include an enormous volume of content, then right away you have a wider choice of sizes and formats available to you. So — a good starting point when considering sizes.

Why not A4 portrait?

Hmmm … well, that’s probably the most cost-effective size/format for large-ish brochures because paper sizes in the UK are generally optimised for that size (or derivations of it like A5 etc.). With ‘A’ sizes generally, there is usually minimal paper wastage from off-cuts, because the base paper sizes that printers use are set up so well for it (SRA3, SRA2 etc.). However, as such, A4 is very “standard” and therefore rather predictable. And predictable does not make your service or product stand out from the crowd!

So what can you do to create more impact, only using size/format?

There are a few obvious alternatives to the bog-standard A4 portrait when it comes to brochures and marketing literature:

  • You could consider going landscape format instead or portrait. However, it’s worth bearing in mind that A4 landscape is not usually as economical as A4 portrait. Ask your local printer about it, though, as it depends upon several variables. Simply going landscape, though, is not particularly radical, so won’t change the impact of your marketing piece much, if at all.
  • You could consider going square, for example 210mm x 210mm. While also not likely to be as wastage-free as A4 portrait, it’s a little “different” and square brochures do have a certain style and sophistication about them. How much that potential wastage affects price is again something that’s governed by different variables. For example, if printing quantities are low, then any additional cost is likely to be fairly negligible. However, such wastage can make more of an impact on your pocket when printing volumes are particularly large. So, again, check with your printer at an early stage.
  • Going extra-large (e.g. A3 portrait) will create its own impact and make your sales or marketing piece literally stand out from the crowd. They’re big — and hard to miss! A3 mailers have been shown to have high response rates, in fact. In theory at least, this larger size should use more paper, so the actual printing cost would be more than the equivalent A4. However, that’s not always the case because it could use half the number of pages (because there’s twice as much room for the content) and therefore be accomplished using the same ‘base’ paper size and number of sheets as an A4 equivalent.
  • Alternatively, you could go with a small brochure but produced unusually well. For example, instead of an A4, saddle-stitched, portrait brochure, you could perhaps go with a DL (third A4) or A5 brochure that’s actually produced like a book. At Southside Print we can make perfect bound booklets (these are like a paperback book) or, even better, case-bound (hardback) books. At a smaller size, but with a lovely thickness and rigidity about them, they have an impact of their own and are ‘pocket-able’ unlike some of their larger counterparts. Add in some fancy printing techniques and you have yourself a real jewel of a marketing piece! All of this would mean that your brochure or sales piece is made to feel more precious and, as such, will be much more likely to be kept rather than discarded.
  • Unusual brochure sizes can be just as economical as standard sizes when thought is put into them.Unique brochure sizes can also have an impact and create an impression on your prospects. So, perhaps you could consider a bespoke size or an unusual fold that results in the same. Such a size will be unusual and thereby stand out from the crowd, which is usually a good thing, so long as the design is good, of course. TIP: One sneaky way of using a standard size/format (e.g. A4 portrait), but making it stand out from the crowd, is to fold it vertically along it’s longest size. In our A4 portrait example, that would give you an unusual brochure with a size of H297mm and a width of only 105mm (tall and thin).
  • Finally you could consider a shaped brochure. Bespoke shapes are entirely possible for brochures and suchlike. However, irregular shaping using a traditional ‘cutter’ or by laser cutting will definitely add extra steps and costs to production. They’re worth considering, though, because a bespoke shape will really make your brochure stand out from the crowd, create a positive impact and be memorable. That’s priceless!

Need help with your next brochure or sales/marketing piece?

Southside Print are here to help you with all stages of production for brochures and printed marketing collateral of any kind. Our in-house graphic designers are available to help make your sales and marketing pieces look phenomenally good and to create a positive impact. They can also take care of the digital artwork for you if you don’t have your own designer. Our printing and production services are second-to-none and our prices are exceptionally competitive. Quality is excellent and we also offer an unusual array of recycled and sustainable paper and printing options. Essentially, we’re a one-stop design and print shop! We’re based near London Bridge and Borough in London’s SE1 region. Call 020 7378 6754 for further details, contact us here or request a more in-depth quotation here. We’ll be delighted to help. Quotes are, of course, free and without pressure or obligation.

Printing & Finishing Services for London

Printing & finishing services for London

We offer an incredibly wide range of printing-related services and processes at Southside Print, so thought we’d publish a guide. It’s not an exhaustive list of everything we do, however it represents a good overview of the core print, design, binding, print finishing and direct mail services that are on offer from our London Bridge/Borough base. Take a look below.

As you can see, we can print and produce just about anything. There are many processes, finishes and embellishments to choose from, so your finished sales or marketing piece can be both fully functional and look as good as it possibly can. Whether you need

Variable Data Printing Service (London SE1)

Variable data printing services in London SE1

Using ‘variable data printing’ is a way of personalising sales and marketing literature to individual recipients. It’s a great marketing tool too. People are far more likely to notice a mailed flyer, for example, if it addresses them by name, right there in the colour printing, as part of the actual design. You may have received brochures personalised to you, perhaps. They may have mentioned your name here and there throughout, in colour. That is a sure-fire way for a sales or marketing piece to get noticed and taken more seriously. Receiving such tailored communications suggests an existing knowledge of the customer, as an individual. It also comes over as being highly professional and a bit more ‘grown up’ than the usual anonymous approach. It also lends the printed piece an element of gravitas, subconsciously saying ‘this is an important message to you‘.

Personalised text

Personalising the text of a brochure or mailshot to include the recipient’s name is an obvious example of variable data resulting in personalised printing. As well as a name, though, the person’s location could also be included for that extra personal touch. Or there could be mention of a previous purchase, a brand usually ordered, or anything else that’s relevant. This is all possible so long as it’s included within the database being supplied to your commercial printer. All of this extra personalisation can demonstrate a real knowledge of the customer within the sales piece, potentially becoming integral to the sales proposition as part of a strategic, well thought-out approach.

Personalised images

Variable Data printing doesn’t need to end with text though. It can also merge images, diagrams or illustrations into the printed piece. For example, a particular image can be printed in a printed document meant for one recipient, while a different image can be printed for someone else. For example, a mailer used to sell health supplements might include a featured image of something the customer has ordered before, now on special offer perhaps. If they’ve ordered before and are reminded of what they purchased, that’s certain to really catch their eye and generate additional repeat sales from the recipient. That’s just one example of how variable data printing can be used to personalise sales and marketing literature.

How Variable Data printing is achieved

This kind of document personalisation is all made possible using Read more

Perfect Bound Trade Lists & Portfolio Tasting Booklets for Flint Wines

Wire bound and perfect bound booklets printed for specialist trade supplier, Flint Wines.

Southside Print, SE1 print a range of marketing collateral for Flint Wines Ltd

Southside Print, Borough SE1 are delighted to work with local company, specialist and exclusive UK importers Flint Wines, who have been supplying the UK’s best restaurants and wine merchants since 2006.

Recent printing for Flint wines includes:

Wire-o bound Portfolio Tasting booklets printed for Flint Wines.

  • Tasting Booklets for the Flint Wines 120 wine Portfolio Tasting event with 3 master classes and sommelier competition taking place tomorrow, Wednesday 27th of February at the China Exchange. (printed digitally with full colour covers, black and white internal pages and wiro bound together with white wire with a protective acetate sheet to the front and white card to the back);
  • En Primeur Tasting Booklets (printed digitally with full colour covers, black and white internal pages with a Perforated Order Form insert) then wire bound together with white wire with a clear acetate sheet to the front and white card to the back);
  • Trade and Merchant Lists digitally printed with Soft Touch Laminate finish to the cover and Perfect bound finish to both books
  • Business cards Digitally printed on 450gsm silk with soft touch laminate.

With several accolades and awards, what is it that makes local Kennington company Flint Wines so special?

Quoted by Derek Morrison from The Good Wine Shop as “one of the most dynamic and exciting merchants in the UK” with a team “filled with passionate and creative professionals who are great collaborators in efforts which push our industry to greater heights.”

Digitally printed business cards for Flint Wines with soft touch laminate.From the beginning Flint Wines specialised in the wines of Burgundy, winning IWC Burgundy Wine Merchant of the Year in the world’s finest and most meticulously judged wine competition. Flint Wines offer one of the most dynamic and comprehensive Burgundy lists in the UK and have over the last few years expanded their range to wines from around the world. Runner up for the past two years in the IWC US Merchant of the Year, Flint has developed its American range which now features more than twenty agencies from Oregon, California, Washington and New York! and since 2014 grown its Italian range, taking over the portfolio of well-regarded Italian specialist HS Wines.

With a passionate and experienced team at Flint, clients will be able to speak directly to the people who are running the company, buying and selling the wines, and making the decisions. Every one of Flint’s sales team knows all there is to know about the producers, the different wines and stories behind them, visiting the vineyards and winemakers regularly. Flint wine trade clients will have access to rarely seen crus and wines that are not available anywhere else in the UK benefiting from the advantage of working with a company who works closely with its growers and is proud of the relationship it has with them.

“In the Observer on Sunday we were reviewed well by Jar Rayner with a special mention going to the wine list. We think this is a really fantastic achievement for such a young restaurant. I just wanted to say thank you for all your help and providing me with some really fantastic wines from Flint. We are really happy with what we get from you.”
Harry Loebeck, head sommelier @ London Shell Co Restaurant

Flint owns all the wines on its list, all of which are available for immediate delivery and as a client it is clear to see their level of knowledge and expertise, as well as a passionate commitment to a superb level of service, making a relationship with Flint Wines very special indeed.

Flint Wines Ltd are just down the road from Southside Print at 16 Stannary Street, in Kennington, London SE11 4AA. For list building, winemaker events such as dinners or in-store tastings, help with first class staff training to help maximise wine sales, or any other enquiries, please contact the team on 020 7582 2500, email: or visit their website: http://www.flintwines.com

Are you a South London business looking for high quality print and excellent service?

Southside Print are one of the longest established commercial printers in the SE1 area. 3 minutes walk from Borough tube and near to London Bridge, with over 32 years of experience and the latest up-to-date equipment we offer digital printing, large format printing, graphic design, a full print management service, print finishing services and we’re also direct mail specialists.

For business cards, letterheads, business stationery, annual reports, roller banners, brochures, booklets, catalogues, menu printing and much more order online from our shop or call 020 7378 6754 to speak to one of our friendly estimating staff for help, advice or a free quote. You can also request a quote or send us an email here. We also offer free delivery from our online print shop, a ‘click & collect’ printing service or same or next day delivery.

Printing for Tabard Barbers, Tabard Street, SE1

Printing for Tabard Barbers, London SE1

Just along the road from Southside Print is Tabard Barbers. One of our nearest SE1 clients, they’ve been keeping us busy recently with quite a few different printing jobs — and very smart they look too. These include:

  • Printed loyalty and student cards for Tabard Barbers, London SE15000 full colour, digitally printed student ‘information’ cards. These can be thought of as both flyers and postcards depending upon your point of view. Their purpose is to publicise the special offers available to students during a period between September and the end of November 2018. They were printed on 350gsm card-weight material, sized at A6 in a landscape format and were printed to both sides.
  • Full colour, digitally printed loyalty cards for use by their customers. One version was for men and another for women. They were printed the size of standard credit cards, a size that’s convenient to store in one’s wallet, purse or pocket. One side was left uncoated so it can be rubber stamped each time the customer in question receives a hair cut or treatment of some kind, the idea being that they receive a free cut or treatment once they’ve filled the card with 9 stamps (the tenth being free). The other side was ‘soft touch’ laminated so that the cards feel good, look attractive and are protected from wear, tear and moisture. They were designed and artworked by a local design company based in Borough SE1.
    Loyalty cards are a great marketing tool for businesses such as hair salons, barbers and cafés. They quietly encourage repeat business from customers and this loyalty means more profit for those businesses using them. And, because the customer benefits too once they’ve filled their card, it’s a win-win for everyone.
  • A full colour, digitally printed poster (shown below, right). This was sized at A1, so utilised our large format inkjet printing service. It was mounted to Foam-X, so it was both light weight and rigid.

About Tabard Barbers

Tabard Barbers one of our closest neighbours, being just along the road from Southside Print at 13 Tabard Street, from which they took their name. A1 poster digitally printed by Southside Print, SE1These days, as being a men’s barber, Tabard is a women’s hair salon which offers outstandingly good value compared to other hair salons in the area, under the fantastic management of the very talented Cece. At Tabard, it’s the full package; you will receive a warm welcome and complimentary refreshments along with “the very best hair styling, grooming and treatments in town” as it says on their website. Men’s grooming services include anything from a buzz cut to a beard trim while ladies’ services include a professional wash, cut and blow dry, hair ups, highlights, comprehensive colouring, bleaching and various treatments. Discounts are also available for students and children up to the age of 14 (see their site for details).

Tabard had an impressive ‘designer’ make-over in recent years and now skilfully combines ultra-modern interior design with historical details like exposed brickwork and stripped floorboards. Indeed, the building’s basement still contains the ancient ovens, which survived from a time when the building was used as a bakery long ago. These were discovered during renovations.

The salon and barbers is now one of the oldest family-run businesses in SE1 and Southwark. It has been in Tabard Street for nearly forty years, having been passed down the generations to the current owner, Dasos Anastasis. Read more

Printing for Bikecation, a Cycling Holiday Company in Borough High Street

Digital & large format printing for Bikecation in Borough High Street

Just like the organisation featured in our last post, our latest case study is for a customer based in Borough High Street. This time it’s the turn of a dynamic cycling holiday company, aptly named Bikecation. Located just a stone’s throw from our print works in SE1, it made good sense for them to try the services of a local printer and we were very pleased to help. Print jobs included some eye-catching posters, which were printed on 200gsm ‘photo satin’ stock, along with some promotional business cards, which were printed on 300gsm silk coated stock. Bikecation supplied the design and artwork files and, as you can see, the design is striking and contemporary. Production was turned around very fast, although the customer didn’t really require them for about a week — we just like to get ahead at Southside Print!

Take a look at some of the A1 posters:

Large format poster printed for Bikecation, the one-stop shop for tailor-made cycling trips Printed poster for show offer to customers Digitally printed poster for book signing by Bikecation's Rob Penn Poster for books signed by Bikecation's Rob Penn Poster for Bikecation & bespoke, corporate, charity & custom cycling breaks Poster for Bikecation's affiliate scheme for bike shops & clubs

About Bikecation

Bikecation started life after a conversation between two cycling enthusiasts; Rob Penn, formerly a City lawyer, and Jamie Paterson, a businessman. Both were keen advocates of the simple pleasures of bike riding and enjoyed travelling. Bikecation turned their shared dream of starting a custom cycling holiday company into reality. As well as being a tour guide for the company, Rob has a best-selling book ‘It’s all About the Bike: the Pursuit of Happiness on Two Wheels’ which has been translated into nine languages and has been made into a BBC documentary called ‘Ride of My Life‘.

Bikecation offers a wide range of custom cycling holidays including leisure cycling holidays, road cycling holidays, a more adventurous style of guided cycling trip called Rob Raids (personally guided by Rob Penn), bespoke mini breaks, cycling training camp breaks, cycling sportives and even ‘Watch & Ride’ breaks where you can watch famous bike races like the Tour de France whilst also getting the chance to ride the course yourself before the actual event.

Included amongst the cycling breaks on offer are corporate tours, private guided holidays and even organised charity events. Destinations include a wide range of beautiful locations in the UK as well as Europe and it’s up to you whether or not you’d like to be accompanied by a Bikecation cycling guide on your particular trip. Bikecation also moves your luggage for you, so you are free to enjoy the cycling and the stunning views. So, whether you’re into slow-paced family cycling along gentle routes in Wales, island hopping in Croatia, doing wine and food tours by bike in Bordeaux, or really going hell-for-leather up classic cycling climbs in the Alps, Bikecation has something to suit you. The range of options is outstanding! What’s more, all hotels are checked and pre-vetted to suit cyclists and sports enthusiasts as well as being hand-picked so they’re perfectly located along the very best cycling routes.

As the company says: Read more

Your 2018 Marketing Calendar (Infographic)

Your 2018 Marketing Calendar (Infographic)

It’s the start of another year and that’s a great time to plan your marketing campaigns for the months ahead. That way you’ll be well prepared, you’ll hit the ground running and be able to make the most of every opportunity that arises throughout the marketing year.

Your Free 2018 Marketing Calendar

The good news is that we’ve made a quick reference 2018 Marketing Calendar just for you! It’s in infographic form and is designed in a very methodical way, taking you through all the main date-based marketing milestones for the year.

Timely Marketing Reminders, Month by Month

As you’ll see, the infographic is packed full of reminders of key UK dates, in month order, so you’ll have opportunity after opportunity to theme your promotions and sales messages for maximum impact and resonance. Use the calendar to plan ahead so that you have your design, artwork, printing and any electronic communications ready well ahead of time. Your clients and prospects can’t fail to be impressed, for example, when they receive a ‘love’ themed promotion from you to coincide with Valentine’s Day in February, sales and marketing literature themed suitably for Easter in April and perhaps even a Royal Wedding themed promotion when Prince Harry and Meghan Markle marry in May. Cafés, bars, hotels and restaurants will also benefit from putting on themed events and menus on key dates such as Burns Night, Halloween and perhaps even when it’s the FA Cup Final although, this year, that also happens to clash with the aforementioned Royal Wedding, which could make for a very interesting dual event!  These are just a few examples — see the full infographic below for many more:

Your Free UK Marketing Calendar for 2018

Of course, to start the year with a bang, January is a great time to launch a New Year sale. This will generate extra revenue, capitalising on the fact that people will have spendable money and vouchers from Christmas gifts. At this time of year, they’re in buying mood so any additional effort you can make to promote your sale will boost your bottom line and please the customers to boot. Our marketing calendar is a handy reminder of other important shopping days too, like Black Friday, Cyber Monday and suchlike. The quick-reference infographic will Read more