Let’s begin with a quote (like a classic, cheesy blog should) on preparation: “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail” – Benjamin Franklin.1
Over the past year, we’ve had a lot of people contact us last minute, hoping for something quick.
While we can do quick, it is much better if we receive your shipping order ahead of time. This gives us ample opportunity to look it over, get it set up, catch any mistakes, and have it ready for you.
If we’re all rushing last minute, there’s a high chance that there will be mistakes made, mistakes that we will not catch, mistakes that will show through in your final product. There may be mistakes on our end, mistakes on yours, or mistakes made by the printer. These mistakes may be small or large, but either way, they will result in a final product that is not what you wanted. This may render your order unsatisfactory or even unsuable. Did you notice I spelt unusable wrong? Good, I’m glad to see you’re taking your time reading this, have a great eye for detail, or both. It’s hard when a lot of text is bunched together, like this paragraph, to distinguish between it.
It’s much easier when it’s spaced out, simple like this paragraph, digestible.
Did you also notice how much harder to read that first large paragraph is than the next one? The difference is that the text is aligned left below, and aligned right above.
But small mistakes like that, the misplacement of a single letter, the clutter of text, the alignment, those aren’t always caught before producing & shipping. Not when there’s a rush to get things out. Yet, when a potential customer, partner, boss (etc.) is looking your material over, they will be taking their time, combing the material, looking for evidence that you and your pitch are worth their time and money. A single spelling error, misplaced image, or washed background may give the impression that this was an unprofessional effort, that the proper time was not taken to prepare this material, that the proper attention to detail was not paid.
If you combed that last paragraph looking for a spelling and/or grammatical error, good. There were none, but I’m glad you’re getting the gist of what I’m saying here.
Mistakes happen. We’re only humans, after all. You cannot expect perfection of yourself or others if you do not provide the opportunity to fix mistakes. When you order and prepare ahead of time, the price is not any higher.
In fact, by preparing ahead of time, you will have a better peace of mind about this issue. This may be a small thing, in which case you have no need to stress about it, so don’t give yourself a reason to. And if it’s a big thing, then it’s even more important you give everyone enough time and opportunities to get it right.
By preparing early, we are able to do a better job, which results in a better final product for you.
If you want to make sure you get your money’s worth, impress a client, or simply have a product you can be proud of and rely on, give us and yourself plenty of time to make sure your design and print file are as perfect as they can be, and your shipping time is the same.
In other words, be prepared.