PG Bookstore Changes

By on July 28th, 2015 in News and announcements

Within a few weeks, Publishers’ Graphics will be launching a new bookselling website called PG Direct.  This e-commerce site replaces the existing PG Bookstore and will have a new domain.

PG Direct is a new sales channel that features a well-designed shopping experience aimed at the consumer. By eliminating multiple steps in the book printing and selling process, we’ve simplified the supply chain, making it easier to order, print and distribute your book. PG will offer discounted retail pricing, free USPS shipping, and fast production and delivery times for titles in this proprietary catalog.

With its singular focus on books, PG Direct offers an attractive alternative without distractions from unrelated products and content. Publishers will especially benefit with an additional sales channel that provides more exposure and visibility for their titles.

What does this mean for my book? The PG Bookstore (www.publishersgraphicsbookstore.com) will no longer exist as of late July. If you are a current retail or wholesale bookstore customer, you have an opportunity to include your book in this new sales channel. Just like before, each title will consist of a personal storefront with book image, description and a retail price established by you. There’s no cost to list your book, and we’ll handle all the transition details.

Personalized storefront for your titles
Personalized storefront for your titles

What’s in it for me? It’s a unique opportunity for you to reach a broader audience. Along with a fresh, up-to-date look, the new site is considerably more powerful than our current bookstore with robust search capabilities. Plus, we’re investing in online search engine marketing so that more customers can discover, purchase and enjoy your titles. In addition, advertising and promotional opportunities will be available to feature your books.

How will I get paid when my book sells? Our model offers a competitive pricing program. Here are a few examples:

B/W Softcover                                                                   B/W Hardcover

6 x9, 200 pages                                                                  8.5 x 11, 200 pages, with dust jacket

List price:                         $14.95                                        List price:                    $34.95

PG printing:                      $2.41                                          PG printing:                  $7.48

PG commission (25%):    $3.74                                         PG commission (25%):    $8.74

Customer makes:         $8.80                                           Customer makes:      $18.73

What if I don’t want to participate? That’s okay; you’ll still be able to easily order your titles via our customer portal on the PG website. Our new Reprint Center enables you to quickly log-in, view your titles and order, all with a few clicks of your mouse.

When will this happen? Very soon! We hope to go live with the new site within a week or so.

What are the next steps?  If you wish to participate, there are some easy forms to fill out. Give us a call and we’ll email  them to you. If you have questions, please email:: choffmann@pubgraphics.com or call 630.221.1850.

 

 

 

PG Welcomes Two New Employees

By on June 22nd, 2015 in News and announcements

We’re excited to introduce two new PG employees: William Hendrickson and Darin Morgan. Short run book printing, POD

Our new Bindery/Print Manager William Hendrickson will be based in our Florence, Kentucky facility.  William has 23 years’ experience in the printing industry.  He has a successful track record of staff leadership and training, color/quality management, budget administration and operational efficiency.

William’s most recent position was with Hennegan, an RR Donnelley company, where he was a Quality Assurance Manager. There he demonstrated strong leadership, superior communication abilities and provided direction and strategies for customers in the printing/mailing industry.

William has kept abreast with rapidly evolving technology and has Xerox repair training along with education from the University of Kentucky, in Bowling Green. We look forward to working closely with William as he leads our production team in our Florence, Kentucky operations.

Also joining PG is Darin Morgan. Darin is our new Direct Mail Account Representative based in the St. Louis area.

Darin has spent most of his career helping hearing aid companies with their direct mail campaigns.  From brainstorming creative ideas to targeting new audiences, his passion and knowledge of the hearing aid industry is readily apparent.

Darin possesses an abundance of energy and willingness to go the extra mile to assist his customers. In fact, he admits to taking a 24/7 approach, routinely fielding phone calls from clients in the late evening just to discuss a creative idea or two. Armed with creativity, enthusiasm and a successful track record, Darin is ready to take on your next direct mail challenge.

A Look Back at 2014

By on December 19th, 2014 in News and announcements

As 2014 comes to a close, we’d like to take this opportunity to reflect on what we’ve seen this year, both in the print/publishing industry and at Publishers’ Graphics.

A good time to reflect on 2014Here’s a few things we’ve noticed:

Print still rules. We’ve seen no let-up in sales of our print books, in fact, just the opposite.   Several recent studies seem to confirm this, like this article: Teens Still Prefer Print.

Bookselling is back, or more specifically Indie-bookselling is back.   Publishers and readers are searching for new outlets, other than Amazon, for reviewing, finding and buying books. And while there are still a fair number of bookstore closings, there are many openings too, like this one in Chicago, about to launch its 3rd location.

Social sharing continues to grow. Social media continues to disrupt traditional marketing, and for millennials especially, might soon outpace other forms of communication, marketing and advertising. By the way, we’re getting more active on Twitter; you can follow our tweets on @podprinter.

Greater demand for multi-channel distribution. Publishers (and authors) know they need to get their titles into a lot of different channels to drive sales and build awareness. We are well positioned for this need!   Watch for announcements early next year!

PG Highlights:

Customer service survey. We initiated a satisfaction survey with every order that we shipped.  We wanted to know what customers thought of our service, turnarounds and quality of products. We read each and every survey!  Keep them coming!

We bought a company! With the purchase of Commercial Letter in St. Louis, we made our second company acquisition.

We moved a company! We completed the physical move of Commercial Letter to the PG offices in Earth City in early December. This involved a major renovation of the PG offices to handle the added staff and equipment.

IMG_6635
The end of the year… a good time to reflect on 2014.

We’re evolving…. into a one-stop solution for our customers. Direct mail, list and data services, book and journal printing, and mailing, warehousing and distribution services are all part of the mix now.

We installed new equipment. We added two new Xerox 150 printers in our Carol Stream, IL headquarters, expanding our portfolio of high speed book printing equipment.

Tradeshows and conferences. We attended some high-profile conferences this year including the London Book Fair and Book Expo America in New York City.

We look forward to providing the best products and services possible in 2015.  Great things are coming up in 2015!  Stay tuned!

 

Good move: CL to PG

By on December 9th, 2014 in News and announcements

goodmove artwork

Over the weekend, the Commercial Letter team moved across town into the PG facility in Earth City, Missouri. To accommodate the added staff and equipment, the PG plant was remodeled: walls were knocked down, cubicles broken down and reassembled, offices rearranged, electricity and security enhanced—all topped off with a fresh coat of paint.

Behind the scenes, system integration is well underway and new technology platforms are being developed.  There’s more work ahead, but overall we’re pleased with our progress.  By the looks on these smiling faces, everyone is happy that this phase is completed!

With the CL and PG staff now situated under one roof, it’s full steam ahead!  Here’s some photos from the big move!

 

PG Introduces Direct Mail

By on August 15th, 2014 in Marketing, News and announcements

As a publisher, you’re often asked to promote books, authors, and events like book signings. That means you might require additional print services like postcards, catalogs, lists, and direct mail.

Now you can look to PG for everything you need all under one roof. With our acquisition of Commercial Letter, we’re excited to offer direct mail products and services. Here’s a partial listing of what we can do:

Are you announcing a new book or book event? There’s a postcard for that! Common sizes are 4 x 6, 6×9, and 6x 11, and we can even print a jumbo size of 9 x 12.

We now offer printing and mailing of postcards, catalogs, direct mail pieces.
We now offer printing and mailing of postcards, catalogs, direct mail pieces.

You asked for them:  Publisher catalogs are now a reality!  List and promote your titles (and your back-list) with our saddle-stitched 4-12 page catalogs and booklets.  Popular sizes are 8.5×11 and 8.5×5.5.

Is your direct mail project more complex? We offer a variety of formats for self-mailers, folder packages, custom handwork or the works—from simple letter-sized packages to multi-piece 9 x 12 packages.

Are you trying to reach a select audience? From consumer and business lists to specialty lists, our list services team can help you obtain the addresses you need in the areas you want to target.

What if you could print a personalized map with directions to a book signing event?  With Variable Printing you can! We can integrate your data into a truly personalized direct mail piece that sets you apart from the competition.

Data management is Square One. If your mailing list is a mess, you won’t reach those targets you want to market to.  Before you spend money, let us analyze and  clean your list with tools like postal formatting, NCOA processing, and merge/purge services.

Are you printing and distributing journals? Do you have a warehousing plan in place? As you wade through complex postal regulations—both domestic and international—you may need some guidance!  Our team can analyze your current program to find those areas that need some tweaking.

Challenge us! We pride ourselves on finding ways to help you with even the most complex packages, including printing ideas, suggestions for the best formats, and data/list advice.

Visit the Commercial Letter website to find more information about our new direct mail products and solutions.

Publishers’ Graphics Acquires Commercial Letter and Expands Distribution Capabilities

By on July 8th, 2014 in News and announcements

[July 8, 2014, Carol Stream, IL]  Publishers’ Graphics, a leading Chicago-based POD print provider, announced today that it has acquired Commercial Letter, a direct marketing printing company located in St. Louis, Missouri. The acquisition fortifies PG’s distribution, mailing, and fulfillment solutions and strengthens its ability to service the publishing industry with direct mail programs.

“Commercial Letter brings a new dimension to our business, allowing us to offer not only a direct mail solution to our publishers, but also advanced supply chain programs. Integrating Commercial Letter’s fulfillment and mailing services into our technology platform will enable our customers to benefit from a highly customized distribution program, all of which aligns very well with our future strategic plans,” said Nick Lewis, President of Publishers’ Graphics.

President of Commercial Letter, Brad Chrysler, agreed: “We are excited to be joining Publishers’ Graphics. Combining their cutting edge technology platforms with our distribution model will be a game changer for our industry. Our customers will benefit from the additional services, a streamlined workflow, and the additional print capacity.”

The Commercial Letter operation will eventually be folded into the PG facility in Earth City and managed by Brad Chrysler, quote 11who will stay on as Vice President of Operations at the facility.  Publishers’ Graphics’ corporate headquarters will remain in Carol Stream, Illinois, approximately 35 miles west of Chicago.

With a legacy spanning over a hundred years, Commercial Letter has been a pioneer in the direct mail industry, printing and sending annually over 60 million pieces of mail for clients in the healthcare, retail, academic and automotive industries. Other services include a marketing automation platform which allows users to integrate their media campaigns through mobile, email, direct mail and web channels.

As a leader in POD and short-run printing for publishers, Publishers’ Graphics brings innovative procedures and workflows to book creation. Providing customized solutions to its customers has made PG a go-to resource for publishers around the world.  Headquartered in Carol Stream, IL, PG has an in-plant satellite operation in Florence, Kentucky, as well as the recently acquired web offset/digital print facility in St. Louis, Missouri, formerly Corley Printing. Publishers’ Graphics distributes globally by printing its products locally on three continents through strategic partnerships.

With a diverse range of publishing customers, Publishers’ Graphics offers POD, short run, and offset solutions to small, medium and large publishers alike. Through the custom development of MIS and workflows, Publishers’ Graphics will customize processes for its customers to minimize costs, and create an ease of doing business.

For more information, please visit www.pubgraphics.com or www.commercial-letter.com.

 

I-Gen Training 2.0

By on May 20th, 2014 in Marketing, News and announcements

Two PG employees at the St. Louis facility, Tania Gonzalez and Ian Peacock, recently completed Xerox’s iGen4 Operator Training. The pair joins the ranks of only 2000 operators worldwide who have become certified by Xerox in this training.

The Xerox course packs an intensive two weeks of on-site training in press set-up and specifications, equipment maintenance and color management.  Particular attention is focused on press maintenance with the goal of maintaining a 90% productivity level. Reaching this critical benchmark means the equipment is performing at optimum levels, with little or no downtime.

Xerox trainer Bob Sampson stated:  “We teach the operators the extensive diagnostic skills that they need which enable the press to function at peak performance levels. That ultimately adds a lot value when a press goes down and the operator can troubleshoot and get it up and running, in short order.”

Optimizing image quality is another important goal of the course.  The training provides the framework for understanding and managing color, and the rest  comes with time and experience.

Both Tania and Ian had previous experience with other presses in the St. Louis plant, but the Xerox technology was new for them. Ian said: “The training has been valuable in helping me run the equipment more efficiently, and it has definitely broadened my abilities in the work environment. “

London Book Fair Roundup

By on April 28th, 2014 in Marketing, News and announcements

The curtains closed on the 2014 London Book Fair just a few weeks ago. The LBF is a major global publishing event, second only to the Frankfurt Book Fair, and a small contingent from Publishers’ Graphics was fortunate enough to attend.

There were seminars and conferences, lots of exhibitors showcasing new technologies, and even a representative from the royal family strolled the aisles: the Duchess of Cornwall.  And of course, books! One glance at the exhibit floor and you’ll be assured that the publishing industry is very much alive and kicking.

Who attends the LBF? Publishers, agents, distributors, authors, and all those who supply the book trade—printers, tech companies and people who just love books. PG’s Vice President of Distribution and Sales, Anthony Ferrigno noted, “With the constant change within the publishing industry, attending an event such as the LBF offers the opportunity for publishers to see new technologies and trends.  In short, if someone is in this industry and is either in an executive or senior management role, they should attend.”

Speaking of trends, PG sales rep Susan Tonks observed quite a few: “It was quite interesting to see various special print techniques for book covers: lots of embossing, foil stamping, reverse lacquer, and folded covers.”  She continued: “Since this was my first international book fair experience, I was impressed by the number of vendors and the wide range of books they publish.”

PG has its eye on the Big Apple with its next stop the Book Expo America in New York City in late May.  If you’d like to meet with us at BEA, give us a shout!

London Book Fair, 2014
London Book Fair, 2014

 

Sights from the London Book Fair
Sights from the London Book Fair

 

Old meets New: Big Ben and the London Eye
Old meets New: Big Ben and the London Eye

 

PG Boosts Productivity and Consistency with New I-Gen Printers

By on April 21st, 2014 in Marketing, News and announcements

Publishers’ Graphics recently installed two new Xerox 150 printers in its Carol Stream, IL headquarters, adding to its portfolio of high speed book printing equipment.   Now all three of its facilities –Carol Stream, Florence, KY and St. Louis possess similar equipment and technology.  The result has been a boost to productivity and print consistency at all three branches.

Probably the most notable enhancement of the I-Gen 150 is the “dpi” capability which increased from 300 dpi to 1200 dpi. DPI is a measurement used to describe the resolution number of dots per inch in digital print and the printing resolution of a hard copy print dot gain. The more dots per inch, the more detail, clarity, and resolution for your images. All imagery – whether black-and-white, sepia toned, or full color, benefits from this enhanced feature – think of it as High- Definition TV for your books!

Xerox I-Gen 150's enhance productivity and image resolution.
Xerox I-Gen 150’s enhance productivity and image resolution.

The best thing though might be the faster speeds of these machines.  With the ability to print 137-150 pages per minute versus 110 pages with the older machines – several hours can be shaved off the production time of the average print run. That alone reduces bottlenecks and manages production flow more efficiently throughout all the plants.

These days, quicker turnaround is definitely an expectation of customers, as is exceptional quality. With that in mind, the Xerox I-Gen’s have turned out to be the perfect “digital fit” for PG’s book printing.

For more information, visit pubgraphics.com.