During Part III in this series will we discuss proofs and timelines:
5. Before you can complete your project timeline, be sure you understand the production time required. If a printer tells you a project will take 3 days, this generally begins when the final proofs are approved. It does not include proof or alteration time. Below are some good questions to ask:
- When will I receive proofs?
- Once proofs are approved, how long until this piece(s) is printed?
- If we need to make alterations, how long will they take and when will you have the new proof (always request an estimate for alterations – if you have a designer on staff, it might be cheaper and quicker for you to make the changes in house)?
- When do I need to submit my mailing list to the mail house?
- When will the mailing drop at the post office?
6. Proofing is one of the most important steps in the process. They can be submitted as electronic PDFs or they can be physical hard copies. When possible, it is always best to receive a physical proof so that you can ensure the colors are correct and that the fold or trim is accurate. A physical proof does require more time and it is usually delivered on proofing paper – different than the paper you will use for your project. If you want a physical proof, be sure to include an extra day on your timeline for approval.