Five Details to Consider When Choosing a Web-to-Print Provider

10 07 2014

The best web-to-print company is the one that produces work that most closely relates to what you need. All services are different, so you need to make sure that you know what you want before committing to a company. Green Printer defines each of the services below as the most important when choosing the best printing provider for your business.

web-to-print

Turnaround Time
The turnaround time on a web-to-print service is the first place you need to look. The company that works slowly may put out great work, but that work is useless if it never comes in on-time. You should always ask what the expected turnaround time for your specific products will be.

Customer Service
If you have a good relationship with a business, you are more likely to enjoy working with them. When you are not getting quality customer service from a printing firm, you will not care what the final product looks like. If a business is making you wish the job was over so you do not have to work with them, you need to go elsewhere.

Online Design
Any company that offers online design features is one you should look at closely. When you get to complete your own design online without waiting, you can get the jobs done much quicker. Also, online design gives you a perspective you may not have had when you began looking for services to complete your printing.

Samples
It is very difficult to determine what your end product will look like based on online photographs. Ideally, you will be able to see physical samples of what the printing company can create for you. This will allow you to determine if the quality of the products are at par with your expectations or if you should shop elsewhere. It is always better to be safe than sorry.

Bonus: Environmentally-friendly Product Offerings
As discussed in earlier posts, most printing companies do not offer environmentally friendly alternatives. Your business could greatly benefit from providing your customers with eco-friendly marketing collateral. This gives you the competitive advantage of being a responsible corporate.



The Green Paper Making Process

25 06 2014

Paper has been a part of the human culture for generations since the Chinese invented it in 105 AD. Paper became a highly demanded commodity in 1453 with the invention of the printing press. The materials used to create it included linen and old cotton. These soon fell out of style as there were not enough raw materials to sustain the growing demand. It was not until 1719 that paper was first made out of wood pulp. Then, with the invention of a machine that created sheets of paper in 1806, modern paper-making finally came into existence. Being unsatisfied with the constant need to abuse natural resources, a recycled paper making process was created. The following steps is how Green Printer describes this process.

Step 1: Collect the Paper
Clean paper (free from food and other contaminates) is collected by a recycling company and transported to the local recycling center. Once there, the paper is sorted, wrapped tightly in large bales, and shipped to a paper mill where it can be processed and turned into new paper. When it arrives, the paper is sorted into stacks of the types of things in can make (such as cardboard or newspaper). 

Step 2: Pulp the Paper
When it is time to process the paper, it is loaded onto a conveyor belt that moves it to a machine known as a pulper. This pulper cuts the paper into tiny pieces, mixes it with a combination of water and chemicals, and heats the mixture in order to break down the solid matter into bits known as fiber. This mixture is called pulp. The pulp is filtered through screens to remove tiny bits of contaminants like glue.

Step 3: Wash the Paper
Now that pulp is fully processed, the recycling center washes or deinks the paper. This generally involves spinning the pulp in a cylinder to separate out staples and other debris. The pulp is then rinsed with water to wash out the final pieces of unwanted material.

Step 4: Beat the Paper
Final refinement happens when the pulp undergoes beating to cause the fibers to swell, making them ideal for the final step in making paper. If the paper needs to be white or colored, the bleach or dye is added during this step.

Step 5: Produce the Paper
The now clean pulp mixture is sprayed onto a large screen and moved through machines that press out all water, leaving nothing but new sheets of recycled paper.



10 Benefits of Using Postcards for Branding Events

19 06 2014


Postcards
are the perfect marketing tool. This is especially true when you use high quality and eco-friendly postcards as the ones offered by Green Printer. Using postcards to invite guests to a branding event is better than simply using social media. If you have a well-targeted mailing list you will go far. So, here are ten reasons why postcards are perfect for inviting people to a branding event.

1. If you turn your postcard into a response card you could also get your customers to refer friends. This can potentially double your clientele for the price of one client acquisition.

2. Let’s say your brand event is a charity drive, postcards are able to encourage customers to drop by. You can market your event by giving them a per-donation discount.

3. On your invitation you can include featured products. You can also include coupons which will entice customers to make a purchase at the event.

4. You can send postcards with VIP access to your branding event. This way your clients feel special and more inclined to show up to the event.

5. You can handout these postcards at physical locations that social media could otherwise not reach. Some of these places include grocery stores, book clubs, restaurants, and others.

6. If you mail out postcards, most people will probably stick them on their refrigerators. This creates repetition and serves as a reminder of your brand every time they go to the kitchen.

7. Sending postcards is a way to stand out. As most brands use social media, your brand will create a more personal bond with clients, which will make customers flock to you.

8. Nothing helps you stay in touch better than postcard marketing. In fact, for each event, you can send a postcard to past customers to let them know you’re thinking of them.

9. While you’re inviting prospective clients to your branding event, you can introduce new services or products at the same time. This is one of the reasons the postcard is so versatile.

10. Finally, postcards are the best way to generate leads and target accounts for your business. You’ll find you get more business than you ever did with social media.

Operating a small business is not always the easiest thing to do. However, with the right tools, you’ll do great. Postcards are the one marketing tool that will set you aside from the rest.



EcoCalculator: A Tool to Identify Environmental Impact When Printing Green

21 05 2014

Organizations that adopt eco-friendly business practices are highly valued in today’s society. Many companies enforce different activities to highlight their desire to be green. Although this is a great step forward, most businesses are unaware of the actual impact of their changes. To address this issue, Green Printer uses an EcoCalculator. This tool measures the impact that every green order has on the environment.

The general drive behind green printing is the idea of saving trees. However, there are other essential details that are often overlooked when choosing a printing company. The other positive environmental changes that take place when printing green are denoted below.

Each order’s environmental savings are measured and added to the client’s previous orders by Green Printer through the EcoCalculator. This calculations are done automatically and are readily available for clients to download for their own records.

 



Technology News: Can Your Smartphone Help the Environment?

1 09 2011

Smartphones have become a universally necessary product for most people. People who love their phones seemingly cannot part with them for even a moment! Now, when speaking about technology and electronic devices, many people probably don’t see that cell phones could be assisting the environment in any way. However, a new study has shown that there are ways these products can help us manage our energy resources.

A recent article from the Environmental News Network reports:

In July, at the Association for Computing Machinery’s MobiSys conference, researchers from MIT and Princeton University took the best-paper award for a system that uses a network of smartphones mounted on car dashboards to collect information about traffic signals and tell drivers when slowing down could help them avoid waiting at lights. By reducing the need to idle and accelerate from a standstill, the system saves gas: In tests conducted in Cambridge, Mass., it helped drivers cut fuel consumption by 20 percent. Cars are responsible for 28 percent of the energy consumption and 32 percent of the carbon dioxide emissions in the United States, says Emmanouil Koukoumidis, a visiting researcher at MIT who led the project. “If you can save even a small percentage of that, then you can have a large effect on the energy that the U.S. consumes,” Koukoumidis says.

Who knew that our phones could also help promote greener living? Very exciting stuff.

Can you think of any additional ways that smartphones (or other popular electronic devices) could help the environment? Are there any Apps available that you’d recommend for others interested in green living?



Environmental News: ‘The Efficiency Opportunity Roadmap’

25 08 2011
The Efficiency Opportunity Roadmap

The Efficiency Opportunity Roadmap

Most people don’t instantly associate technology and computers with ‘green living.’ However, these electronic devices are an incredibly integral part of most people’s lives… making them more energy efficient is an important development.

Microsoft has begun development on making the pieces that go into our technology more environmentally-friendly. Take a look at the excerpt from the article below, as well as the following video, to learn more about how major companies will be developing green technology in the coming years.

Starting at the Silicon level, certain components, such as “green” RAM and disk drives, can use less power at normal operational loads through lower voltage or other low power designs (e.g., solid-state drives instead of hard disk drives). Additionally, certain components, such as the CPU and hard disk drives, can dynamically lower their power needs when less busy or idle, typically in conjunction with the operating system.

The operating system can employ some very sophisticated power management capabilities. By monitoring system operation, it can understand and respond to usage patterns, thereby allowing the hardware reduce its energy use.

As we have shown previously, applications can help reduce energy consumption in a number of ways. If they are designed to work well with power management, by providing utilization information back to the OS and having the ability to respond to  variable system availability, they can ensure that servers and PCs are able to save energy when idle and that user productivity is not affected by displays or systems powering off when critical tasks are running. Server applications that are designed to use IT resources dynamically and be tolerant to sudden equipment failure can dramatically improve server utilization by reducing the number of servers or virtual machines assigned to a given application. Finally, applications should be able to suspend or postpone noncritical operations when resources (IT resources or electric power) are constrained.

Microsoft, The Triple Pundit



An Exciting New Discovery for Solar Energy

18 08 2011

Image via NASA

Great strides for solar energy have been made in recent months, and it is exciting to follow the story as it develops. Each discovery is another step towards making greener living simpler and more affordable.

Researchers at the University of Michigan have made a scientific discovery that  is intriguing all on its own but it is the breakthrough’s potential applications in solar power generation that have them excited. According to Stephen Rand, a professor at the university and author of the paper that discusses his team’s discovery in the “Journal of Applied Physics”, the researchers found a way to make an “optical battery” which harnesses the magnetic attributes in light that, until now, scientists didn’t think amounted to much of anything.

The report explains that  light has both electric and magnetic components but, until now, scientists believed the magnetic field effects were weak enough that they could be ignored. Rand and his fellow researchers, however,  found that at the right intensity, when light is traveling through a material that does not conduct electricity, the light field can generate magnetic effects that are 100 million times stronger than thought possible. Under these circumstances, says Rand, the magnetic fields become similar in strength to a strong electric effect.

William Fisher, a doctoral student in applied physics, says that what makes this possible is “a previously undetected brand of “optical rectification.”  In traditional optical rectification, light’s electric field causes positive and negative charges to be pulled apart in a material. That sets up voltage, similar to battery. Before, this effect had only been observed in crystalline materials that possessed a certain symmetry. This process works with materials such as glass, but presently requires light that surpasses the sun’s natural intensity Fisher indicated they were working on finding materials that would at lower light intensity.

The research team believes that this discovery could lead to a solar cell that requires no semi-conductor. Since semi-conductors constitute a bulk of a solar cell’s processing, eliminating it represents an opportunity for a considerable reduction in costs. Fisher notes that a solar cell using this new energy harvesting technique would only require lenses to focus the light and fiber to carry it. “Glass works for both,” said Fisher,  ”it’s already made in bulk, and it doesn’t require as much processing. Transparent ceramics might be even better.”

Caleb Denison, Earth Techling

Fantastic findings!

At Green Printer, we strive to keep up with all of the latest news in environmental preservation and technology. Is there a recent study or article about green living that grabbed your attention? Are you working in your local community to create environmental change? We’d love to hear from you in the comments! You might even find yourself or your findings featured in our weekly blog posts!



The Potential for ‘Zero Emissions’

5 08 2011

One of the latest pieces of environmental technology news to hit the press is the creation of solar powered vehicle chargers. This new development takes the concept of “zero emissions” a step beyond hybrid cars, it actually allows the entire vehicle to be run off of solar energy. This is a major stride forward in creating transportation that is 100% environmentally friendly, as well as making travel without the reliance on gas a reality.

“Zero emissions” is a tricky phrase. Electric vehicles produce zero emissions at the tailpipe, but more often than not there are emissions at the power plant. The only way to have a truly zero-emissions EV is to get your power from a renewable source like the sun.

SolarCity is making it a whole lot easier to do that. The California company has started offering solar EV chargers to customers in 11 states and Washington, D.C., allowing people to drive their cars purely on sunshine.

“It allows for the carbon-free lifestyle. You can go EV and PV and drive on sunshine power,” Ben Tarbell, vp of products, told us. “There are a lot of environmental and economic benefits for our customers.”

The company, fresh off a $280 million investment from Google, makes it easy for people to embrace solar power by leasing them complete photovoltaic packages. It’s been dabbling in solar chargers for awhile, and it installed solar EV charging stations along highway 101 between Los Angeles and San Francisco in 2009.

But the arrival of the Nissan Leaf and Chevrolet Volt, not to mention the plethora of EVs and plug-in hybrids automakers promise to deliver by 2015, makes it time to go all-in, Tarbell said.

– Alexander George, Environmental News Network



Let’s Get Digital: From YouTube Ads to Mighty Pixel Productions

16 06 2009

A www.greenprinteronline.com dispatch.

Think back to the ads you actually remember. The infamous Mac versus PC ones. The award-winning Mr. W ad with a touching twist. More than likely, the videos were made by former professionals in the film industry. Not convinced?

Just check out the list of credits behind the two to three minute YouTube teasers on GreenWorldAds. Many hail from a history of doing independent film work or music videos. Read the rest of this entry »



Green Printer interviews entrepreneur Carmon Spagnola of m

10 06 2009

A Green Printer interview with Carmen Spagnola, entrepreneur and owner of m.

1. What made you want to start m?
I started m because I was a frustrated consumer.  I decided that  if I want to have access to smarter, more beautifully designed, more  responsible products and amenities for my home and family, I was going to have to create more demand.  Markets are a bit of a chicken-and-egg  relationship.  Many retailers will tell you that they only provide  what their customers want.  That is only part of my modus operandi. I want to showcase the possibility of a better performing future, so  much of what I sell and promote is currently considered ahead of the market.  But how will the market know what it wants if we don’t inspire it to want more?
Read the rest of this entry »