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Stuart Kellock: How a quick catch up with your printer can give your brand a boost.

By Helen Dugdale.
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Over the past 12 months, we've had the opportunity to work on several re-engineering products for clients who have either driven up their branding, or in other instances, driven down their costs. The positive changes to the labels, brands and businesses came about after we questioned clients about their reasons for their current label designs. The responses we got were interesting and set us all off on a journey to revisit, and fulfil, their label needs. 

Our first project came about through a conversation with a client about their colour strategy. We had assumed that the colours used were fundamental and that was why they were being printed as a spot colour. However, from the conversation came the knowledge that this was not the case, and as long as they had continuity they were not wedded to the actual colour.

So, we were able to take this information away and, through a combination of converting spot colours to process colours, and removing one of the process colours entirely, we were able to move this job from 10 colours to eight. Additionally, we managed to tweak the label size to give better productivity by being able to run more across.

Total savings for the client were over £5,500 per year, all by answering some questions.
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The second example came about because of a technical issue that we were having ourselves. The label was for a wine called Honu, and the customer was putting a large amount of black ink onto a silver material. Unfortunately, this meant that when it was on the line, it was marking badly.

Black ink is the softest of the inks, and silver material is the least ink receptive of all materials. We discussed with the client why they had designed the label this way and they had been told elsewhere that the cheapest way to get a foil effect was to use silver paper. This can be true under certain circumstances but is not always the case.

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Taking the design away, I spoke to our dye maker. They came up with a design which included not only foiling, but embossing and foiling, and a patterned foil all in the same design. The impact on the labels was staggering. What had been a flat 2-dimensional design came alive with a bit of foil and an emboss. The design which was good had become lost in an attempt to save money in the printing, these new techniques gave the label life and vibrancy and with only a 2% increase in cost. We are still awaiting data back on sales but expect to see a significant double digit figure increase in the next 12 months.

The impact on the labels was staggering.
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Needless to say - these examples got us thinking: If these are the solutions we're bumping into accidentally, how much is hidden out there waiting for us to tackle? So, we decided to do something about it. To help us do this we have added to our team.

Meet Claire, our new Packaging Development Technologist

Claire Jeffery is a print repro junkie who loves nothing more than ripping designs apart to see what makes them tick. Having previously worked with notable brand design houses like Elmwood (Brand Design), PB Creative and JKR, Claire comes to Label Apeel with a wealth of experience. She will be heading up our QC strategy, driving our R&D projects and taking a critical eye to all our existing work to see how and where we can deliver even greater value to our clients.

This will primarily be a back-office function, but she may occasionally come out of the closet to meet up with clients when requested by our sales team. We are immensely pleased to welcome someone of Claire’s calibre to Label Apeel and we look forward to her being part of the team for many years to come.

We are immensely pleased to welcome someone of Claire’s calibre to Label Apeel and we look forward to her being part of the team for many years to come.