Author Archives: Hugh Griffin

About Hugh Griffin

Former Marketing Manager, now happily retired.

Are Custom Branded Online Catalogs and W2P the Same Thing?

Not even close. W2P (the generic term for web-to-print) services run the gamut from “plain vanilla” to gorgeous, comprehensive platforms where users may not even realize they’re no longer on a company site.

Some confuse e-commerce with W2P because  both happen online, but e-commerce is generally a “generic ordering platform”whereas sophisticated W2P services provide a User Name/Password-protected platform where customers can see all of their print and related needs, can enter only variable information to proof and order anything from a brand image business card or digital printed brochure with variable text options.

The “flip side” of custom branded online catalogs is that they come in several ‘flavors.’ One model is purchased software which printers buy and tweak for each new customer they add. Another model is “co-op” where those running the actual system are 3rd party resources who may take a small piece of each transaction.  Not every system or platform offers all the same advantages. Most offer good ordering and proofing tools, but the best offer sophisticated usage information which makes future budgeting easier, enable “direct oversight” of “who can purchase what, in what quantity” and do not permit deviation from brand image standards.

It pays to ask for a W2P demonstration when a printer offers these services. Know what you want, understand the reliability and security of an offering before you commit.

If you’re interested in establishing a custom branded online catalog, you can contact us today about getting started! If your employees regularly purchase the same branded products in volume, it’s worth consideration.

Is disaster planning a part of your employee handbook?

Employee Handbook

Most Employee Handbooks deal with matters of Safety & Security, but many fail to address Disaster Planning. In the event of a major earthquake or other sudden disaster, it’s wise to establish two things: where those evacuating the premises are to gather for an immediate headcount, and who is responsible (including an understudy) for conducting the headcount to ensure all are accounted for and injury free. It pays to rehearse evacuation procedures, as this helps employees memorize safe rally points. Continue reading

Paperless Post Adds Tangible to Virtual

Image Courtesy of JP Stevens engraved social stationery.

It seems Ironic, but even Paperless Post  has introduced a creative new line of printed invitations and stationery, recognizing the impact of printed invitations far outweighs ephemeral e-cards.  Their customers can now choose to send e-vites, p-vites or a combination of both. We applaud PP’s creative response to helping others communicate more effectively.

Despite years of “anti-print, anti-paper” e-rhetoric, the “virtual behemoths” have actively used print to ensure their marketing messages reach intended targets. As others moves into the book sales competition with Amazon, perhaps the hyperbole will finally subside, giving way to the obvious: print is persistent, more persuasive and adds value.

Security Printing Services

Sample Vector Image for security printing – Available for free download

Often companies are reluctant to acknowledge counterfeit product problems, hoping they’ll go away. Unfortunately, that doesn’t work. Counterfeiters tend to take the path of least resistance, so making your labeling a bit harder to fake than someone else’s often is the first step in recovery. This may not even add cost to current practices, but learning how is  as simple as seeking out an expert.

Most security printers share information (discreetly)…after confirming “your” authenticity. Whatever printing processes you already use on labeling, tagging, packaging and other documents (Certificates, coupons, etc.),  may be able to simultaneously apply security features. Continue reading

Stuart F Cooper Launches Online

MONTEREY, CA: Stuart F. Cooper launched its online store SFCooper.com to over 2,500 attorneys at this year’s annual California State Bar meeting in Monterey, California. According to Hugh Griffin, Vice President of Marketing, the site offers attorneys, lawyers and other professional service firms the products needed to run and grow successful practices. “On the site professionals can design, proof and purchase engraved business cards, letterheads and envelopes, as well as order plain paper, exhibit tabs and other practice essentials,” according to Griffin. Also available are work tablets, manuscript covers, pleading paper, jury instruction paper, Tyvek envelopes, mailing labels and Will & Trust Supplies. Continue reading

“The Cloud” Darkens

A recent NY Times investigation done with help of McKinsey & Co. revealed data centers supporting “the cloud” were consuming over 2% of the nation’s energy in 2010. One finding, these data centers “used the equivalent output of 30 nuclear power plants,” detracts attention from the reality: much of the energy they consume is coming from carbon-based power plants.

According to the investigation, one data center alone can consume as much power as mid-sized city. What’s equally troubling, most data centers are incredibly inefficient, running at utlilization rates of 7-12% and consuming exponentially more power than required to meet their operating capacity out of fear of “down time.”  The back-up power systems preferred by many, diesel generators, are adding to the problem and generating a growing number of environmental fines.

Granted “Big Data” is a relatively immature industry, but one wonders how much longer the exaggerated claims of “online being greener” will continue. As the old saying goes: “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and you can fool all of the people some of the time, but….”

Sharing 9/12 History – “Endeavor” Comes Home

The space shuttle Endeavor was flown (twice) over our L.A. plant today. We feel very fortunate to have had the opportunity to see it, and we thought you might like to see the moment. While the shuttle will ultimately be on permanent display at the CA Science center only 2 miles away, seeing it in the air, one last time and in person, was a magical moment.  Whatever differences citizens may have in an election year, wherever we live, whatever our circumstances at the moment, it’s wonderful to experience a great national accomplishment and see it bring so many together to celebrate the positive.

For those familiar with L.A., freeways and businesses in the area came to a near standstill at Noon today as everyone wanted a view.  “Way To Go !” to the many in greater Los Angeles who dreamed up, designed and built  the shuttles. “Made in the USA” really does mean something, and it’s moments like these that bring out the best in all of us.

BurdgeCooper Featured on “The Beauty of Engraving” site

Neenah Paper’s new site: The Beauty of Engraving, debuting August 2012, already features two examples of our work.  A heartfelt “Thank You” to Neenah for creating this site to enable others to see why successful firms choose engraving to create truly remarkable, memorable and environmentally responsible identities.

Our first featured pieces are for The Boca Raton Resort & Club, a Waldorf-Astoria property, and the Galaxy Casino & Resort in Macau.  Look for future contributions to thebeautyofengraving.com as we continue sharing examples of engraving on Neenah papers.