Screen Printing Chemicals – My tip of the week is about properly applying chemicals in the screen print shop. This is a very simple but very effective tip. By effective I mean both easier and saving dollars. And I must credit 2RG’s friend Dave Gehrich from Atlas Screen Supply with this suggestion. Dave is a chemical guy and he knows his stuff, so pay attention! When applying chemicals such as press wash, most users will fill a shop rag with chemical and wipe the screen. By spraying the chemical directly on the screen, squeegee onto a rag shirt or pellon, and then wiping, you’ll use a fraction of the chemical.
Email Marketing – My tip is to make sure you have a good plan for email marketing. I suggest using a service as this is a cost that will pay for itself in no time. Some of the best services out there are Mail Chimp, Topica, Constant Contacts and iContact. Give them a test drive to see what one is easiest for you to use. Things to look for are the ability to easily create emails with logos and templates with no design experience needed. Ability to manages your email list and clean duplicates and manage bounces. Ability to grow your email list by creating Opt In lists and product interest groups and capture emails from your website or SM pages. The program needs to have good social media linking and scheduling to make Social Media and Email Marketing Work together. Finally it need to have stats and tracking. This allows you to do A/B testing easier and you can see what moves your customers.
Business Cards – Your business card says who you are, and beyond your vital information. A crisp, professional look will give the customer the impression that you will also be professional.
Today, there is absolutely no reason to have a low-end business card, though I see them all the time. Online companies offer full color business cards for around $25.00. Every business person today can and should have a professional looking card.
Many of your customers will never see your shop, so that card is their only physical evidence of your business. Keep your cards handy and ready to pass out at a moment’s notice. Remember, everyone is a potential customer, so don’t be stingy with those business cards. They’re cheap!
Figure Out Your Market – This is the first step and is much neglected. Take some time and figure who your market is and where they are located. Really put some time and effort into this, not just a quick 5 minutes. Talk to your customers and look at your competitors. Really form a good picture of your market as that will tell you where your marketing efforts should be put. Figure your market out first and then everything else falls into place.
Exposure Calculator An exposure calculator is basically a film positive that comes with five or more identical images including fine lines and dots. Using our best guess starting point exposure times, we double that time and expose the film onto a screen, and wash out as normal. After the screen is complete, hold it up to a light and compare the different images. The one that is exposed the best, where the image looks the most crisp, is our target. A formula under that image will tell us our ideal exposure time.
Exposure calculators are available from all emulsion manufacturers and your local supplier might give you this exposure film for free.