The Power of the Printed Letterhead

In this increasingly high-tech world one could be forgiven for thinking that the importance of the humble letterhead could be waning in favour of near-instant electronic communications such as email, graphical e-shots and so on. However nothing could be further from the truth, as we’ll see.


First of all, sending your sales or marketing message via a posted letterhead, rather than electronically, means that your message is not vulnerable to the ruthless automation that is the dreaded spam filter! So your message is far more likely to be received safely in the first place, by the intended recipient.

Brand Recognition

No images will be blocked on a printed letterhead either; meaning that your logo and brand will be there, for all to see in glorious colour, the instant your communication is opened. So, unlike electronic media, your posted letterhead or compliments slip will also reliably reinforce your brand.

A Personal Touch

They also allow you to add a personal and very eye-catching touch with, for example, a handwritten note or PS. This is simply not possible via electronic media — there is no electronically delivered equivalent to which the eye is so drawn as a handwritten note on a piece of professionally printed stationery. It’s often the first thing the recipient will look at on receipt and, as such, is a very useful marketing tool. We can alternatively professionally scan and realistically print the ‘handwritten’ note if you need to mail in bulk (it’s even possible to do this on a ‘Post-It’ type note, which is incredibly attention-grabbing).

Marketing Communication

The rules of good sales and marketing communication still apply to a traditional letter, of course. So as well as the design and printing of your stationery needing to be top-notch and the message being concise and clear, you must remember to include the following in your letter:

  • an attention-grabbing subject or headline;
  • a compelling message or offer;
  • a call to action;
  • including a choice of ways to respond to you.

Compliments Slips

Compliments slips can serve the same purpose as letterheads if the message is concise. A ‘thank you’ on a compliments slip received by post seems so much more personal and heartfelt than a quick-fire email, particularly as a compliments slip often includes a handwritten message and, as we point out above, there is virtually nothing as attention-grabbing as a handwritten note on a printed document. Think about for a moment — have you ever ignored a handwritten message on a piece of received post? It’s doubtful, so bear in mind this very powerful and reliable communication tool next time you’re reaching out to a prospect or client. Perhaps this is part of the reason for the recent renaissance in the use of printed stationery and letter writing.

Printing Services (Litho & Digital)

At Southside Print in London Bridge, we have both litho and digital printing services. While digital printing is perfect for production of fast turnaround, low/medium quantity stationery, litho printing comes into its own when larger print quantities are required and/or when absolute colour accuracy is essential and only the best will do.

Spot ‘Pantone’ Colours

Digital printing can get close to Pantone colour matching (the standard colour matching system used in the printing industry) but lithographic printing can match it exactly. This is because ‘spot’ colour is only possible via litho printing. For those who don’t know, printing spot colours refers to the method of mixing the wet ink so that, even before it’s added to the printing press, it matches the colour required exactly. Spot colour can therefore match colours simply not possible on a digital press. These might even include metallic inks, very light pastels, eye-catching fluorescent inks or certain standard, flat colours which are notoriously tricky to achieve using more standard printing processes.

So next time you want to contact your customers or prospects with an important sales or marketing  message, consider giving traditional letters a try, particularly if you use the tips described above. If you do, you’ll probably be pleasantly surprised by the level of response; it’s likely to be a vast improvement on electronic methods and a reliable reinforcement of your brand.

Southside Print London Bridge can be contacted on 020 7378 6754 or visit our contact page to see a map of our London SE1 location and other contact options. We’d be delighted to help.