When designing for your business’s print marketing campaign, there are a lot of factors to consider. Format of the piece itself, paper choices, shapes and sizes – all of these factors are influenced by your campaign’s goals and design needs. But there’s an often overlooked factor that can redefine your design and give it some more eye-catching detail: Finishing options. 

Finishing options applied to a printed piece are perhaps the most underrated aspect of printing. Not many will consciously notice the finish applied to a printed object, but it’s an easy-to-implement factor that can take your design to the next level, impressing customers and granting your design an air of beauty and professionalism. 

For starters, there are some basic finishing options that will apply to almost all print marketing postcards, brochures or other products. Almost any printed piece destined for the post office will feature some sort of coating on the paper. (This is especially true for standalone mailed objects like postcards.) There are four common coating options for print marketing. 

The first, gloss coating, is a paper option with a high sheen and high-quality color definition. Gloss coated papers are professional and attractive, and are often cheaper than similar dull or matte papers. A satin finish is similar to gloss coating, but with a more subtle sheen due to a lower level of gloss finish overall. Matte coated papers have an even lower level of gloss coating. Matte finishes still produce vivid color when used for print marketing, but they’re a little bit bulker and more opaque than satin or gloss coated papers. Dull finish papers are usually the lowest in gloss. However, dull finish paper is a great option for certain applications.

It doesn’t stop there. There are post-printing finishing options that can help accentuate your design’s best features, and they should be taken advantage of. Features like spot UV coating can be used to add “texture” to your design, raising up design elements like specific colors, patterns or logos. This can allow for designs that really pop off the page, engage viewers and leave a lasting impression. 

It’s great to have all these options, especially from a designer’s perspective. It’s also important to explore how each of these options can be applied to your design efforts on your next campaign. A good way to think about finish options is to think about the type of print marketing product you’re designing. A catalogue or booklet may benefit from a glossy finish (with some spot UV coating on the cover for a little added flair), but when using the same item for a calendar, a less-glossy finish will make the final product less reflective and easier to read. It’s worth noting, too, that when designing for more formal pieces, like letterhead or other stationery, an unfinished paper facilitates a more professional design.  This is just scratching the surface on finishing options for print marketing. Be sure to explore some of these options when planning your next campaign with uspress.com.

Posted by:Robert Davison

Marketing Content Creator

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