Best Practice in Catalogue Printing 1: the Pre-Production meeting.

Best Practice in Catalogue Printing 1: the Pre-Production meeting.


If your business depends on brochure or catalogue printing delivered to your customers by direct mail or mail order, then here’s a couple of process improvements that you might find useful to make your life easier and make  your print that bit more effective.

Namely, the use of the pre and post-production meetings.

Preproduction meeting at our
Bicester Yellow Shed

OK, OK, they sound dull as a wet bank holiday in Warrington but I assure you, they’re entirely vital in removing frustrations and adding that little bit of sparkle to your productions that makes life (and the bottom line) more fruitful.

Let me explain.

Pre Production Meeting
Just like your tedious form teacher used to say, perfect planning prevents poor performance (or words to that effect!). Well, our print consultants are experts in planning a production so things run smoothly. And the key phase here is the pre-production meeting.

This is where specifications, print timings, distribution schedules, packing, warehousing, definitions, language variants, people involved, emergency contact information, contingencies, and so on, are all planned out meticulously to cover every eventuality and keep all key people informed and up to speed before the project goes to print.

Many catalogue printing projects can be complex, multi-version affairs, so having everything agreed and itemised before the project goes to press is essential – and often overlooked.

Pre Production Bible
So the end result of this meeting is the Pre-Production Bible, a master document containing all information relevant to the production which is used as a reference guide throughout the printing phase and is key to keeping things moving predictably and delivering to spec. and to schedule.

It can be a bit of work to organise and create (which is one good reason to have an experienced Print Consultant to hand) but it allows you to turn what can be an unpredictable and chaotic nightmare into a structured, anticipated and thoroughly organised event. Hurrah!

We’ll take a look at how the post production meeting starts a virtuous improvement cycle in the catalogue printing process in the next article. But to take advantage of all the sage-like wisdom of our Print Consultants, all for the price of a cup of coffee and a warm welcome, contact us and we’ll get onto the case.