Category Archives: Printing

Wondering what the different between a PDF and a press proof is? Curious about how printing presses have evolved over the years? Or are you seeking a good resource for printing industry news?

These are just a few of the questions about the printing process and the printing industry in general that you will find answers for here in the Printing Archives. And if you have a question about printing that isn’t answered here, please let us know. We would love to help you find all the answers to your printing questions.

Take Advantage of Fast Label Printing To Get Last Minute Gift Labels

Fast Label Printing for Last-Minute Holiday Labeling

fast label printing for holiday gifts from Lightning Labels

It’s not too late to take advantage of fast label printing for holiday gifts.

If you have yet to embellish your products with holiday-themed labels, partner with Lightning Labels for fast label-printing services to get your items shelf-ready in just days. Our advanced printing technology and rapid turnaround can help you get decorative labels in time for the peak of the holiday shopping season.

While it may feel like the Christmas gift-buying season begins earlier every year, many people wait until the last minute to purchase items for their loved ones, friends and colleagues. In fact, according to the National Retail Federation, 16 percent of shoppers don’t begin buying presents until the first two weeks of December. Many don’t start shopping until the second half of the month.

December can be a very profitable time for businesses large and small, especially ones that capitalize on the marketing opportunity with decorative labels that make their items stand out. Once you have a holiday design in mind for your product packaging, Lightning Labels’ high-speed service can provide you professional, eye-catching labels to help your items sell this holiday season.

3 Tips for Creating Labels for Christmas Gifts

Lightning Labels is giving businesses the chance to make last-minute labels for Christmas gifts with fast label ordering and high-quality labeling solutions. To help you get started on your decorative labels, here are three design tips:

1. Use Impactful Language on Gift Labels: Depending on who you’re targeting, your product may perform best if your gift labels contain humorous language, like puns or plays on words. For more elegant products, craft product descriptions that are short and feature vivid language. Using different fonts and colors can also make the wording on your labels stand out. Lightning Labels’ printing technology ensures all text on your labels, large or small, is clear and legible. Additionally, our four-color process produces any range of colors, from bright and bold tones to pale and soft ones.

2. Don’t Skimp On Quality: When you order gift labels from Lightning Labels, you don’t have to sacrifice quality for speedy service and affordability. Our advanced printing and customizable labeling solutions ensure every aspect of your design is printed perfectly on distinctive label materials. No matter how quickly you’re creating labels, make sure they look professional and attractive.

3. Consider a Durable Label: When it comes to label materials, if you sell foods, beverages or body-care products, you may want to choose a material that is resistant to water and oil. Lightning Labels’ durable materials can protect your label design from leaks, spills, water condensation and more, ensuring gift labels maintain their holiday cheer wherever your product is used.

Label Printing Company, Lightning Labels, Offers Business Development Tips

Limited-Edition Labels Enhance the “Custom” in Custom Label Printing

Denver, CO, (December 4, 2012) – Lightning Labels, a custom label and sticker printing leader, encourages manufacturers to take advantage of digital label printing technology and incorporate unique, limited-edition labels and packaging this holiday season. To assist customers and manufacturers with holiday marketing, Lighting Labels releases business development tips that cover short-run, limited-edition labels, seasonal custom labels and product packaging.

“Just as technology has enabled major advances in such areas as social media, so is it positively impacting other forms of personalized business development,” says Business Development Manager AnneMarie Campbell. “The manufacturer can collect a certain number of orders, then create personalized product labels targeted to buyers. Instead of just trumpeting the product, it also heralds the customer – heightened perceived value, loyalty and goodwill – which is fitting this holiday season.”

People Flock To Short-Run, Limited-Edition Labels
Even if the product is left unchanged, printing an updated or special-edition label design – made easy with advancements of digital label printing techniques – can attract more customers to the product. Lightning Labels’ business development tips apply to targeting a new audience or marketing toward an entirely new set of potential customers. This creates an opportunity to test new label design and copy without the risk and pressure of harming the product’s already-positive image.

If the limited-edition run is overwhelmingly successful, Lighting Labels recommends doing more special-edition promotions and/or integrating some related tactics into their everyday labels and product marketing strategies.

What Limited-Edition Labels And Products Truly Mean
Special-edition custom labels haven’t always been affixed to products; in fact, the trend didn’t come into full effect until the late 1990s, when it was used as a marketing ploy. Companies utilizing this strategy were quick to discover that not only did demand for the so-called “limited” products increase, but people were willing to pay more money for products labeled as “limited” or “special.”

What started as a marketing plan for higher-end manufacturers and companies is now utilized across the globe by companies. During the holidays, though, more special-edition products seem to line the shelves, from collector tins to themed labels and packaging. Millions of people have made it their hobby to collect as many of these products annually as possible.

How Seasonal Labels And Packaging Affect Consumers
People historically understood that the holidays were fast-approaching by changes in weather, but the prevalence of seasonal custom labels has changed consumers’ holiday associations. Rather than determining the true start of autumn by falling leaves, people rush to devour limited-edition pumpkin spice delicacies and harvest-colored custom labels; winter’s arrival is welcomed by companies’ use of holiday-themed labels and packaging.

The low cost of digital label printing makes limited editions an attainable marketing and promotional plan that can be used for various events and seasons throughout the year. Although it’s not limited to the holiday season, it can be a good time to begin and test the strategy. Low custom labels, label printing, label printing companylabel printing costs and affordable prices of smaller sample batches from Lightning Labels give manufacturers the option to try this tactic on a few products or orders at a time.

How to Market Custom Labels and Products Seasonally
Lightning Labels’ industry advisors note that limited-edition custom labels not only look festive and welcoming, but they can be a gateway into creating an entire themed marketing campaign. Coffee drinkers around the world rejoiced when Starbucks announced via social media that its special-edition red cups were available once again, and manufacturers can use similar strategies.

Promote cheery, special-edition custom labels on your Facebook and Twitter accounts, then take advantage of multichannel marketing by posting pictures of the labels and packaging on Instagram and Pinterest, then tie everything together with a related #hashtag. Consider adding holiday-themed hashtags and QR codes to the limited-edition packaging that people can access once they see or purchase the collectable product.

Right now Lightning Labels is running a special promotion to celebrate its more than 10,000 Lightning Labels Facebook fans by offering 10% off all online orders from December 3, 2012 through December 5, 2012.  Simply use promo code LLFB10 at checkout.  The promo code LLFB10 is valid on new label orders placed online only and does not apply to reorders.  The maximum discount is $1,000. Free ground shipping applies to regularly priced orders shipped within the United States and Canada, but shipping charges apply for printed press proofs. This offer cannot be combined with any other offers or promotions.

About Lightning Labels:
Lightning Labels uses state-of-the-art digital printing technology to provide affordable, full-color custom labels and custom stickers of all shapes and sizes, and now offers a full line of custom packaging products. From small orders for individuals, to the bulk needs of big businesses, Lightning Labels is equipped to handle and fulfill sticker, label and product packaging projects of all types. Best of all, like the name implies, Lightning Labels provides a quick turnaround to every customers’ labeling and product packaging needs. Uses for Lightning Labels custom product labels and custom stickers include food packaging and organic food labels, wine and beverage labels, bath and body labels, and nutraceutical products, such as vitamins, essentials oils, and herbal remedies, as well as event stickers, adhesive window stickers and more. Lightning Labels strongly supports the development of environmentally friendly printing materials and carries EarthFirst PLA, a new kind of green label material made from corn instead of petroleum. While operating as a high-tech printer, Lighting Labels prides itself on its personalized customer service. Lightning Labels provides one stop shopping for all of your label and product packaging needs. For more information and to place orders online, visit LightningLabels.com. For the latest in packaging news and labeling promotional offers, find Lightning Labels on Facebook, Twitter (@LightningLabels), and Google+.

Stop Making Excuses For Not Testing Custom Stickers And Labels

Prevent Errors, Wasted Resources By
Printing Small Label Batches

Custom Labels

Sufficient testing can improve a marketing and label campaign.

Chances are you wouldn’t make a big decision without doing a bit of background work first. Why should it be any different when creating custom labels and stickers? If you’re considering going on vacation, you will probably compare resorts, airfare and travel accommodations. If you are thinking about making a large purchase, you may shop around to find the best deal. Manufacturing labels for your unique products and marketing campaigns shouldn’t be a guessing game, either.

3 Reasons People Avoid Testing Their Labels
Despite how easy it is for people to test their custom sticker and labels before buying them in bulk, many still avoid doing so. Why? Here are three reasons people skip testing (and why it’s not recommended to do so):

“Testing labels is too expensive.” - Although this seems like it may be a viable reason, it’s just a myth. Lightning Labels offers consumers cost-effective and wallet-friendly digital label printing costs for small batches of their desired order, which is actually less expensive than ordering large quantities of a label they are unsure about.

“I already know what I want.” - It’s common that product manufacturers do have an idea of what type of label they want, but it may be because they are unfamiliar with the variety of sticker and label materials available to them. People may have heard of eco-friendly labels made of stone and post-consumer waste instead of trees and petrochemicals, but how will they know just how the materials work with printing designs and styles unless small batches are used as a test?

“My customers don’t want different labels.” - It can be difficult to know just what a targeted audience wants if people are not given an option. With that said, small batches of test stickers and labels can be used to discover whether customers are attracted to other designs, materials, sticker and label copy and more. Consider using different colors, font types and graphics and track sales – there may be more to learn from label testing than you think.

3 More Reasons Sticker And Label Testing Is Imperative
People may now understand why custom label testing is important, but it doesn’t end there. Here are three more reasons testing can better a marketing and packaging campaign and increase your sales.

Label testing can save you from embarrassment - Think about how humiliating it would be to send a letter or email with a glaring error to a client. If the person saw it, there is a possibility it could affect the business and they wouldn’t take the company or product as seriously as they would if the spelling and/or grammar were impeccable.

Instead of taking a grammar gamble, use label testing as a form of proofreading. Rather than risking making errors on a large number of custom stickers and labels, printing a small batch for testing will provide an opportunity to double- and triple-check for mistakes.

Testing makes decisions easier - Perhaps a manufacturer is torn between several options, and he or she is having a difficult time choosing which would be best for a current marketing and/or labeling campaign. Taking advantage of low digital label printing costs by ordering small numbers of several labels and designs can take the guesswork out of the difficult decision.

Small label batches increase design flexibility - Even if a person doesn’t think they need a marketing or labeling makeover, it’s possible that printing small batches of labels will produce new ideas that were not previously considered. Testing and selecting new colors, ink and materials may be key in making a product more modern and getting the label design out of a sales-hindering rut.

Lightning Labels, Printer of Environmentally Friendly Stickers and Labels, Issues Tips to Help Consumers Identify Greenwashing

Green Claims Can Create Red-Faced Manufacturers: ‘Greenwashing’ Trend Increases Need for Eco-Friendly Label Regulations

Eco-Friendly labels are valued by customers

Denver, CO (PRWEB) November 27, 2012

Lightning Labels, a custom label and sticker printing leader, is increasing awareness of a not-so-new fad – “greenwashing” – that has been used frequently by manufacturers as a means to capitalize on consumers’ desires to see eco-friendly labels and stickers.

“‘Greenwashing’ is a fast-growing trend, and some would venture to say that green is really the new black,” says Business Development Manager AnneMarie Campbell. “But the trend is destructive, both for the consumers who buy a product based on eco-friendly label claims and the corporations and manufacturers whose actual environmentally friendly efforts are being overshadowed by false or misleading claims by competitors.”

The History of ‘Greenwashing’ and False Eco-Label Claims: The term “greenwashing,” now commonly used in the labeling industry, came about in 1986 when an environmentalist exposed non-environmentally friendly practices in the hospitality industry, calling for people to reuse towels as a way to preserve the Earth and its environment. Greenwashing is a combination of the words green, meaning eco-friendly, and whitewashing, meaning purposefully covering mistakes or errors, and means intentionally using green claims to make people believe a product is eco-friendly.

Greenwashing may include calling products organic, natural, green or recycled when the products are not. Greenpeace, an advocate for eliminating greenwashing and companies’ false claims about being eco-friendly, says most manufacturers resort to this strategy to increase their sales and try to make money from consumers who have a genuine interest in supporting products that save the Earth.

Lightning Labels Warns of the Damage Caused by Misleading Environmentally Friendly Labels: There are several problems that may rise when companies knowingly use misleading environmentally friendly labels. For starters, it’s making consumers quite confused as to what it really means for a company to be green. The eco-friendly market has become competitive – some may even call it oversaturated – and now gives people the opportunity to compare prices for eco-friendly products that have traditionally been more expensive.

The problem, however, is when companies that play by the rules and actually do offer green products aren’t able to lower prices enough to remain competitive, allowing greenwashing companies to take more business from honest companies, which perpetuates the cycle and continues to take advantage of unknowing consumers.

Stopping The Cycle By Demanding Honest Labels: Although consumers have traditionally been the victims of these false eco-friendly label claims, more people are taking a stand against companies that use misleading label tactics.

This sends a powerful message to companies, especially those that choose to make false claims and exaggerate their eco-friendly efforts. Instead of being an easy target for these businesses, consumers are now making it their mission to turn the tables on deceitful companies, making their inaccurate claims public. This has potential to damage a company and severely harm its reputation. In a competitive market, this will likely cause more than just corporate embarrassment – it could destroy a business’s reputation.

Lightning Labels has been doing its part to provide people with environmentally friendly label materials and stickers. In addition to offering recycled kraft and vellum sticker and labels materials, manufacturers can also purchase BioStone products – made from stone, not trees – and EarthFirst PLA labels, which are eco-friendly and made from corn.

To order truly eco-friendly custom stickers and environmentally friendly labels made with green materials like EarthFirst PLA, Lightning Labels is offering a four-day sale that runs from November 29, 2012 through December 2, 2012. Save 10% off new label orders placed online. Simply use promo code 4DAYS at checkout. The promo code 4DAYS is valid on new label orders placed online only and does not apply to reorders. Free ground shipping applies to regularly priced orders shipped within the United States and Canada, but shipping charges apply for printed press proofs. This offer cannot be combined with any other offers or promotions.

About Lightning Labels:

Lightning Labels uses state-of-the-art digital printing technology to provide affordable, full-color custom labels and custom stickers of all shapes and sizes, and now offers a full line of custom packaging products. From small orders for individuals, to the bulk needs of big businesses, Lightning Labels is equipped to handle and fulfill sticker, label and product packaging projects of all types. Best of all, like the name implies, Lightning Labels provides a quick turnaround to every customers’ labeling and product packaging needs. Uses for Lightning Labels custom product labels and custom stickers include food packaging and organic food labels, wine and beverage labels, bath and body labels, and nutraceutical products, such as vitamins, essentials oils, and herbal remedies, as well as event stickers, adhesive window stickers and more. Lightning Labels strongly supports the development of environmentally friendly printing materials and carries EarthFirst PLA, a new kind of green label material made from corn instead of petroleum. While operating as a high-tech printer, Lighting Labels prides itself on its personalized customer service. Lightning Labels provides one stop shopping for all of your label and product packaging needs. For more information and to place orders online, visit LightningLabels.com. For the latest in packaging news and labeling promotional offers, find Lightning Labels on Facebook, Twitter (@LightningLabels), and Google+.

Dscoop Launches Slick New Website

Visit the New Dscoop Website

Dscoop’s new website is as as easy to use as it is easy on the eyes.

Tailored towards members of the Digital Solutions Cooperative, a global community of HP Graphic Arts users and experts, Dscoop.org’s new features include:

  • Customizable user profiles
  • Personalized news feed and digest emails
  • Discussion forums and listservs
  • Ability to edit membership directory listings
  • Integration with major social networking sites such as LinkedIn and Twitter
  • Mobile app downloads for iPhone, Android, Blackberry, and Palm devices
  • A resources archive that includes past conference proceedings, Dscoop Quarterly issues, and webinars

Continue reading “Dscoop Launches Slick New Website” »

PDF vs Press Proof – Which Should You Choose?

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When you place a custom label order with Lightning Labels you have a choice. You can request a PDF proof of your artwork or a press proof (also called a hard copy proof). Here is a quick guide to help you decide which proofing method you should choose.

PDF Proofs

The biggest advantage of PDF proofs is speed. Our prepress department usually turns a proof around within 24 hours, sometimes it happens the same day. With a PDF proof you can receive and approve your proof immediately after prepress has emailed it to you. It is always going to be the quickest proofing method.

If your artwork is fairly simple, with just text and some basic graphics then a PDF proof may be right for you. You can view your proof on your screen or print it out on your inkjet or laser printer. Keep in mind, the colors will be subtly different from your finished labels. If color is critical then you should request a press proof.

Press Proofs

With press proofs you get to see exactly what how your labels will look. Your proof is printed on the same press that will print your finished labels so the color will be exactly the same. You can even cut out your label from the proof sheet and stick it on your jar or container to see how it looks there. This way there will no surprises.

If you are ordering chrome or clear material we strongly recommend you order a press proof. Color can look very different when printed on these kinds of materials, so it is always best to see the final result.

Best of all, at Lightning Labels press proofs are free, you just pay for shipping. If you can wait just an extra day (assuming you request overnight shipping) you can have the piece of mind in knowing exactly how your labels will look.

The Last Word

Whichever proofing method you choose, always proofread your label artwork carefully. It is good to have someone else proofread it as well. It is a lot less expensive to fix a problem before we go to press than after you receive your labels. When you think your art is fine, just proof it one more time. We have learned from experience that the more time you spend studying your proof the less likely a mistake will make it through to press.

Gather All the Printing News at Alltop

Alltop

Sometimes when you are trying to research a topic a google search can get frustrating. You often have to sift through pages of search results before gathering all the information you need. Wouldn’t it be better to go to one location and find all the important news that is completely up to date? This is the idea behind Alltop, a new venture by Guy Kawasaki, the serial entrepreneur, venture capatalist and author.

Alltop gathers all the latest news from around the world and organizes it by topic, kind of like an online magazine rack. It pulls in news from traditional sources such as newspaper and magazine web sites, but also includes new media such as popular blogs and online forums. If you need to do research on ballroom dancing, woodworking or New Zealand then Alltop has you covered. Best of all it is updated every hour with all the latest news on every topic so you know you are getting only current information.

Recently a printing category was added to Alltop. It includes news from the commercial printing industry as well as label printing. So now all the news from our industry is gathered conveniently in one place at printing.alltop.com. And yes, you will find the Lightning Labels blog in there as well.

The History of Print

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I came across this interesting article a couple of weeks ago on the history of print. It describes a rich history that starts way back around 1800 BC and continues all the way to the 21st century. The photo above is from one of the first rotary printing presses invented in the 1840′s. For anyone involved in the printing industry it provides an interesting historical perspective.

The article does not mention the HP-Indigo press, which in my humble opinion was a very important part of the history of printing. But it does provide an interesting analysis of most of the major printing advances over the last several hundred years.

Introducing PrintWiki – What on Earth is it?

Adam Dewitz is a busy guy. He is a second year graduate student at the Rochester Institute of Technology studying Print Media, he is the author of the Printmode blog (a blog devoted to the printing industry), and now he has created PrintWiki – The Free Encyclopedia of Print. A wiki is basically just a type of web site that allows anyone to update the content – the most famous wiki is the online encyclopedia Wikipedia.

The PrintWiki website provides a collaborative platform that
enables anyone to contribute to the collective knowledge of the
printing and publishing community. The goal of the site is to provide a comprehensive, open source encyclopedia of printing and publishing. It is not completely unregulated, there is a group of people led by Adam who will review entries to maintain the integrity of the information. But it is up to people within the industry to get involved.

I have joined the PrintWiki community and I did my first entry on label unwind direction. Now, I will be contributing further entries as time goes on – my focus will be on the label industry. So if you are an expert in the print industry I encourage you to get involved. The more entries that are created the more useful it will be for everyone.