Print Collateral Audit – a Print Reseller Checklist

The enormous global change we’re all living through presents a unique opportunity for printing companies.

Here’s what I mean.

How much of your client’s print collateral has kept up with the changes?

Incomplete, outdated or irrelevant print material creates a point of friction in a buyer’s journey. Have you ever asked about a product in a brochure or catalog, only to be told it’s no longer available?

This frustrates consumers. The whole point of marketing material, whether print or otherwise, is to remove frustration, objections, or friction, and move them closer to a purchase.

Why not offer your clients a quick audit/survey to replace outdated or irrelevant material and offer new printing services?

A print material audit is a soft sales call that delivers benefit to the client. To make it more proprietary, give your audit a name. Something like the ABC Co. Print Material Analysis.

Of course, an audit like this should be done on a regular basis, preferably at least once a year.

The easiest way to do this is to go in with a checklist. Then pass each print item through it to uncover gaps and needs.

Print Collateral Checklist for Your Clients

print collateral audit

Below is a list of things that could have changed which indicates a need for changes in existing material, or for new material. If you handle digital marketing for your clients, include both print and digital items in your survey.

  • Have they added new services?
  • Have they added new products?
  • Are there new employees or locations?
  • Do all print items match the company's current branding or style guide?
  • Do they have a branding or style guide? If not, you could offer to create one.
  • Is contact and social media information correct?
  • Is there information missing from a piece that should be there, e.g. a website URL or additional phone number?
  • Does it contain information about Covid and other safety protocols at their facility. Like it or not, a large percentage of prospective clients will want to know how a company is handling this issue for those times when they need to be there in person.
  • If they sell products, do they need new print packaging? Are they aware of the benefits of digitally printed packaging?

What promotional print marketing materials could be added?

  • Do they have a product catalog? Even digital companies can use a catalog. This could include their services, skills, expertise, certifications, key staff, and locations, presented in a magazine format and sent to both prospects and clients.
  • Do they have a brochure? They should also have a sales letter (or series of follow-up letters) along with envelopes, spec sheets, testimonial flyers, and other relevant material to go with each brochure.
  • Are their campaigns missing pieces that could help convert? In other words, is their marketing funnel incomplete?
  • Do they do trade shows or events? What materials could be added to make those events more productive? Items such as saddle-stitched catalogs, brochures, spec sheets, order forms and giveaways.
  • Is the material still relevant to their market? For example, does it make sense to segment print material according to distinct client segments such as demographics? Marketing material resonates better when it's targeted to a specific client.
  • Does their material have good calls-to-action?
  • Are there seasons for the company’s products or services? If so, print materials should reflect it.
  • Is pricing correct?
  • Do they have print versions of all their online reviews and ratings? For example, if they have lots of good online reviews, you could create a print testimonial book.
  • Are there cross-channel opportunities? For example, is there a digital campaign that would be helped by a direct mail follow-up sequence? And vice versa. For example, a US Postal Service survey found that combining digital with direct mail increased ROI with up to 40% conversion rates.
  • Are there direct mail postage discounts you might offer on their current campaigns?
  • Blog content and expertise. Do they have content or expertise that could be repurposed into print reports, booklets, brochures, or direct mail pieces?
  • Their competition. Do an audit of their main competitors’ print and digital collateral. What are they doing that your client should be doing?

If you already do this type of print collateral survey for your clients, I hope I gave you a few new ideas.

If not, I encourage you to start. It’s a solid way to build a relationship with clients that in turn, will increase your success as a print reseller.

Short Runs Make it Practical for All Clients

Remember, with today’s print technology, your clients don’t have to spend thousands of dollars and/or run thousands of product catalogs to be cost effective – you can offer runs of 50 – 50,000 depending on their need. Short run digital printing of books, catalogs, annual reports, directories, manuals, programs, and magazines are within reach for the smallest of companies.

Let me know how you make out with your print material audits.

Don’t forget, you can use our online quote and order system to get instant pricing as you work with your clients.

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