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Printing Must Make an Emotional Connection to Generate Customers


Marketing managers will always argue that their sales kits and company collateral are engaging enough to generate sales.

But if you ask a print specialist, you’ll find their printed company collateral could have communicated more about their brand through better paper options, custom die cutting techniques, spot colors, finishing, and structural designs. In the printing world, these are all tremendous opportunities to print marketing or sales material that make strong customer connections.

  • And when you ask sales reps what they think about their company's marketing collateral, they’ll bluntly tell you their sales collateral is bland and does not make a customer connection. This should be a hard stop for print projects because sales people must love to use your marketing collateral. Their feedback will tell you right off the bat if you need to rethink how you print entirely. 


Lesley York- print specialist at Rex Three with over twenty years of printing experience in Florida and New York- goes above and beyond to understand her customer’s intentions when printing a simple brochure or complex media kit. Though her clients' collateral might have been designed to reach certain goals and objectives, she notes that a print specialist must fulfill the project’s intentions thinking about their customer first. This includes really nailing down a balance between design and function for a printing project. Sometimes, this is difficult to do when most marketers nowadays only focus on digital marketing tactics.

This is why Lesley invests time helping clients to promote credibility through print. She notes a time when one of her clients approached her about wanting to do a sales piece for a chocolate convention. Lesley remembers getting mental sparks about ways she could help the client create a memorable piece for a show where competition was anything but friendly. She says that although the customer’s design was beautiful, the paper, ink, and structural elements did not communicate taste. This is when Lesley recommended a VIP Plike Brown stock to communicate the rich and smooth textures of chocolate that would differentiate her client from the rest. Her client agreed they would have never known how to do that. 

“We are always trying to connect customers with concepts that add to their brand personality, “ says Lesley. “I am able to provide my clients with insight that helps differentiate them from their competitors while still embracing their initial design.”

Finding ways to communicate high quality, style, durability and stability is something copy can do very nicely when the printed piece aligns with the brand.  A good print specialist knows the “ins” and “outs” in order to work with creative directors during the first stages of the design. This not only maximizes creativity, but also helps Lesley identify ways to cut costs through proactive planning in the early stages of graphic design.

According to an article on Forbes, print has quite a bit of influence for obvious reasons, such as adding credibility, tangibility, engagement, and tremendous brand value. 

Rex Three's print and mail center fosters this consultative approach to printing marketing collateral by encouraging clients to bring their print specialist to the drawing board. Lesley mentions that many of her clients see a great deal of opportunities for enhanced creativity, cost-savings, and logistical insight through her feedback in this stage.


When companies go to an event (like a tradeshow or seminar) and decide to print marketing collateral, they need to really spend time thinking about the impact they want to make. Offline marketing can be very effective when you take the time to design and print brochures or sales kits that motivate and incentivize people to want to do business with you. It’s not just about communicating what you do, it’s about making an emotional and personal connection; something digital marketing can’t do very well.

One of the reasons why many marketing managers overlook this aspect of printing marketing collateral is because they simply don’t know what’s available in the printing world to make a connection. There’s really a lot of variables to consider: print techniques such as varnish, gloss or spot UV, smooth aqueous finishes or even different paper options that include metallic colors and smooth textures. The best thing to do when printing a brochure (no matter how simple it is) is to sit down with your print specialist to nail down what kind of material and format will best make a connection with your target customer. Doing this in the very beginning of your planning stages will save you time and, more importantly, lost sales opportunities.