Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

2019 Pine Awards of Excellence

Friday, April 12th, 2019


PINE’s Industry Awards Gala is an annual event presenting awards to the association’s print competition winners and provides a unique opportunity to showcase projects and network. There was an impressive body of work submitted for the twelfth year of PINE’s Awards of Excellence. The judges were captivated with the outstanding print produced in New England.

This year Premier earned 7 awards. Members of our sales team proudly accepted the awards on our behalf. Prize-winning pieces included variable data mailers, posters, perfect bound books, wide format pieces, and direct mailers. (below are some images from the event and images of the award-winning pieces.).

We were excited and honored to be included in the event and share that pride with our clients and all the hardworking team members at Premier!

For more information how Premier can produce your next award-winning piece contact us at

6 Prepress Tips For Print Ready Files

Tuesday, January 15th, 2019

1) Double-check spelling and grammar

Reduce typos by proofreading your copy in reverse. Start by reading the last word on the page and then move left and up. By doing this you are forcing your brain to look at the words without automatically filling the words and letters in.

2) Convert text to paths

Depending on the printer outlining fonts is a good practice to get into before sending your art. By outlining your font you are ensuring that the pre-press specialist will not need to have a copy of your fonts to setup the file for production. Unless the printer needs to edit your copy before production, most prefer all the fonts to be outlined in your print-ready file. Turning Fonts to outlines effectively means that the text is no longer text – it has become a graphic, and the text cannot be altered. The Mac shortcut is CMD+A (to select all copy on page), SHIFT+CMD+O (outline fonts). Once you have outlined your fonts save the file with a new name so your original file is still editable. If you are unsure if you should outline your text give your printer a call and they will be able to tell you the best way to save your print ready file.

3) Include linked images

If you are sending your native art files (Illustrator, InDesign, etc.) to your printer it’s a good practice to make sure all linked graphics and fonts are included. Packaging a file puts the native file, fonts and any linked images into one folder that you can zip and send. Illustrator also has the option of embedding links and makes any placed graphics a native part of your AI file.

4) Different apps for different uses

Many of us can tend to have tunnel vision when it comes to designing in our favorite applications. However, what’s good in Photoshop isn’t always good in Illustrator and vice versa. This chart helps provide an overview of which Adobe Creative Cloud application is best for different types of work. Following these general guidelines can make your work easier and make for a smoother process when it’s time to print your graphics.

 5.) Define Bleed

Taking your design from the digital to print involves making sure your file’s bleed, crop and cuts are lined up properly. These marks indicate the edges of your design and where cuts should be made once things are printed.

Crop marks indicate where your design will be cut, and the bleed is where parts of text or objects extend past the page boundary to compensate for trimming. By not adding the bleed you the risk of having a white border along the sides of you piece, where the paper extends beyond your digital design. Also your printer will most likely send back your artwork to add the bleeds.

6) CMYK vs. RGB

Print ready files should have all images converted to CMYK as RGB is the color standard for monitors. The RGB color gamut isn’t ideal for print as most of the colors can not be replicated with inks. If images aren’t set to CMYK you may see a color shift occur during the production process which can lead to unsatisfactory results.

For more information on how Premier can help you with your next printed piece. Contact us at

Before There was Pantone

Wednesday, August 8th, 2018

Ever wonder what books or guides were used to show color before Pantone was the “go to” for print and design? Below are two very extensive guides for their time. One is a one of a kind while the other was a published reference book in the early 1900’s and both these books predate Pantone by about 270 years.

A.Boogert’s Traité des couleurs servant à la peinture à l’eau (Color Treatments for Water Painting)

271 years before Pantone came out with the first color swatch book, in 1692, A. Boogert, a Dutch artist created the first ever handwritten color swatch index book. It is a comprehensive 800 page mixing guide to using watercolor. Each page is packed full of watercolor swatches and mix instructions for 1 part, 2 parts and 3 parts water. Each page full of swatches shows a range of tones and saturation. In the beginning of the guide Boogert explains the use of color in painting and then how to create certain hues and how to change tones. The book itself is the most comprehensive guide of its time, it was also intended to be an educational guide, but it was the only one of its kind and very likely was seen by very few eyes.

Werner’s Nomenclature of Colours

This next book was first published in 1814 (149 years before Pantone’s first color book) in the pre-photographic age and was the preeminent guide to color and its classification for artists, scientists, naturalists and anthropologists in the 19th century. This book provided incredible detail about each color and where to find it in nature. The guide was first devised by German mineralogist Abraham Gottlob Werner in the late 18th-century. Soon after Scottish painter, Patrick Syme updated Werner’s guide, matching color swatches and his own list of examples to expand upon it. This book is now republished by Smithsonian Books as a pocket-sized guide providing a historic look into the connection between colors and nature.







Of course, now we all use Pantone, it is the standard for matching color. Be the first 5 to Call or email us today for a Pantone book to use in the design of your next project.

Sometimes Direct Mail Is Just Better

Wednesday, August 1st, 2018

Direct mailing is a growing medium. Even though digital channels have proved to be successful, traditional channels of direct marketing are showing a higher return on investment. Studies show that 64% of millennials would rather receive direct mail than email advertisements. Additionally, studies show that the average open rate of marketed emails is below 20%.

Out of all the age demographics, millennials have the highest response rate when it comes to direct mail marketing. Those who receive direct mail open them at the same high rate of all other demographics. Studies performed by the USPS found that “Millennials are far more likely than non-Millennials to read and engage with direct mail.” The reasons why direct mail is still as effective today include the print and image quality and checking the mail is considered a leisurely activity. Furthermore many prefer direct mail over email, I know I do.

You have to remember that mailboxes are tangible objects that people have to check. Your targeted direct mailing piece will be seen, but are the pieces eye-catching enough to engage the reader? Mailing pieces should be variable printed and targeted to each consumer. This will also make the mailing piece more personal for the recipient receiving them.

When designing for direct mail try a folded piece to grow your brand. It has been statistically proven to achieve response rates of 4.4% compared to the .12% response rate of direct digital advertisements. When designing your piece try using a fold to engage your audience. A trifold works well for direct mailing. The folds invite the reader in while providing a simple design element. Another fold to consider is a gatefold which provides the reader with a visual impact while being easy to follow.


Or you can go with a more dynamic and really eye-catching fold like this origami fold that gets inserted into an envelope (See video link). This intricate fold folds flat into a postcard size of 4”x7” and the flat dimensions are 7”x12”. The folds of this piece make the artwork engaging as it follows the folding scores from top to bottom. The art can be designed in two ways: to show a cohesive image when folded and a different design using the cohesive image in the design of the flat piece. It’s a well-crafted fold that can be found on the Foldfactory youtube channel under fold #438 or click the video below.

For more information on how to make your next direct mailing piece more eye-catching contact


Premier Partners For Good!

Thursday, July 26th, 2018

Premier Graphics has recently partnered with the Kennedy Employment Services and Goodwill Employment Services. These non-profit programs specialize in offering programs and services to individuals with a wide range of disabilities, and their recruitment assistance programs help individuals gain a successful job placement to fit with their unique skills set. The Kennedy Center and Goodwill strive to offer programs and services across the age spectrum to individuals with unique talents, interests and goals. While working with these companies it is a coordinated effort between us and their support staff to train and acclimate these new employees to their position and provide them with the training they need to be successful.

Over the years Premier has been involved with giving back to the surrounding communities along with being proactive in creating a diversified workforce. Premier hires people of all nationalities as well as those with special needs. We also have a long history of partnering with local community organizations and programs such as the Bridgeport Rescue Mission, Miracle House, Bethel Recovery Center, Mary Magdalen House, and Women in Crisis to name a few.

As Premier continues to grow, we will continue to partner with our community by providing opportunities to those in need.

For more information on how Premier has partnered with the local community contact us at

Mary Wade Family

Monday, April 30th, 2018


Meet Jack Flaherty, Vice President of Sales for Premier. Recently Jack was interviewed by the Mary Wade Home. Jack’s history with the Mary Wade Home goes back longer than the 7 years that he has been working side by side with them on all their printing needs. His history with the Mary Wade Home goes back to his maternal grandparents and to when he himself lived on the same street as Mary Wade on Clinton Avenue with his parents.

Mary Wade’s mission is to provide high-quality medical care, social programs, and supervised residential services to those in need. The Mary Wade Home supports the New Haven Community with live in residents, day programs, and employment opportunities. They employ about 275 people and work with many vendors in the area, and Premier is one of them. Jack reconnected with the Mary Wade Home years ago when he met a rep at a convention in New Haven. The two spoke after the meeting and Jack shared his family’s story which you can hear all about in the above video. He met with David Hunter the President & CEO for a tour of the expanded buildings and facility along with the building and entrances his grandmother would have used when she worked for the Mary Wade Home. Recently Mary Wade reached out to Jack asking him if he would like to be interviewed for their video project on “How Mary Wade Continues to Support Families and Community” which was debuted at their Gala event.

Premier is proud to be with Jack supporting Mary Wade’s efforts and we value our relationship.

Premier Continues Expansion and Announces New Additions To The Sales Team

Friday, February 23rd, 2018

Premier Continues Expansion and Announces New Additions To The Sales Team.

Robert Sternau – Rob joined Premier Graphics in July 2017 as Senior V.P. Business Development.

In his new position at Premier, Rob will be responsible for helping grow overall sales by developing sales and marketing initiatives, recruiting additional sales reps, and direct selling.

Rob has successfully managed sales and marketing departments for major metropolitan New York City area printers over the past 25 years.  Most recently, Rob has served as VP Sales for Hennegan – An RR Donnelley Company.  Additionally, he has served in sales and marketing leadership positions with Kay Printing in Clifton, NJ and Allied Printing in Manchester, CT.

He received his Bachelor of Arts Degree from Sarah Lawrence College and lives in Cold Spring, New York with his wife and son.

Bob Carr – Bob recently joined Premier as VP of Sales.

In his new position at Premier, Bob will be responsible for helping grow overall sales. Bob has two distinct areas that he works well in.  He loves coming up with creative solutions to difficult projects as well as helping clients get the best value from their print spend. He has been in the print industry for over 38 years and has worked at a ½ dozen printers over 30 plus years in NY/CT/ME and also owned a mid-sized printing company.

Most recently, Bob was a National Account Manager for Allied Printing and held sales roles at JS McCarthy and Thames Printing. Bob lives in Thomaston, CT with his wife Pam.


Mark Lee – Mark joined Premier in January 2018 with the goal of bringing new business relationships to Premier

In his new position at Premier, Mark will be responsible for helping grow overall sales and delivering targeted, personalized direct mail solutions to clients.

Mark’s background in print sales goes back 35 years.  He joined a very large printing company’s sales training program after graduating from Indiana University in 1982.  His first sales assignment was working on the JC Penney Catalogs, they were about 1,000 pages, with print runs over 10 million. No internet in 1983!

Most recently, Mark worked at RR Donnelly, and Bedwick and Jones Printing.

Mark is originally from a small-town in Indiana and he and his wife have lived in Fairfield, CT with their three children since 1995.

 Tom Meehan – Tom joined Premier in December 2017 as VP Solutions – Print & Mail Specialist.

In his new position at Premier, Tom will be responsible for helping grow overall sales by developing long-term business relationships.

Tom loves our new HP Inkjet Web Press and is excited about bringing high-speed variable color solutions to Premier’s clients.

Tom has worked in the printing industry since graduating from Northeastern University (winners of the 2018 Beanpot!).  Most recently, Tom worked in sales at Frye Communications and RR Donnelly. He lives in Orange CT with his wife JoAnn.


“We are excited about the potential that this group of talent brings to Premier” says Sean Huban, Premier’s Chief Revenue Officer.  “They have already hit the ground running and have recently added more than 25 new accounts”.

Based in Stratford, Premier is a single source provider of transactional and marketing communication solutions.

For more information contact us at

Better Data = Better Marketing

Thursday, December 28th, 2017

Duplicate contacts, misspelled names, missing address fields, and incorrect information are data mishaps that will throw a wrench in the works of your marketing and sales efforts. Your direct mailing campaign is only as effective as the data you collect and use.

Here are five tips to clean up the quality of your data:

  1. Remove Inconsistent Data Entries

There are tools to help you remove duplicate data. If you’ve never done a de-duplication before, you’ll also need to manually scan and edit your contacts.

This step will obviously take some time, but if you implement a company-wide data entry standard system and make a commitment to quality data, you will only have to do this once.

  • Use data validation tools that help you to determine the validity of your data, such as email verification tools. Google has resources to use to do this.
  • Use Excel’s functions to clean your data, Excel’s support pages have a wealth of knowledge to do this. Their guides will walk you through finding and replacing spelling errors, unintentional upper or lower case letters, fixing dates and times, and deduping.
  1. Verify All New Data

It’s important to always verify new data entries with existing databases. This can be done by using a three-point data check system to verify all new and updated data before it enters the central database. For example, these three points can be Name, Phone Number, and Email. You can do this by sorting your data by columns or doing a find search. By verifying data during data entry you not only keep lists current but you reduce adding duplicate contacts as well.

  1. Keep Your Data Fresh

All databases degrade over time. Some estimate that data degrades at an average of 5% or more each year. This is due to factors such as contacts changing email addresses, clients contacts dropping out of the picture or contacts moving on to different opportunities or moving locations.  To keep your data fresh remove all emails that have bounced or opted-out and update contact addresses when receiving your returned to sender direct mailings. Not only is this a good practice for keeping your data fresh, but it also helps keep you out of spam folders and lowers return to sender rates.

  1. Implement Consistent Data Entry

Ensure that all employees are aware of your company-wide data entry standards. By standardizing data entry company-wide, the databases will stay current and clean. When inputting each customer record make sure to have first and last names, mailing addresses, and email addresses in separate columns. That way, when you do the three-point check, contacts will be easy to find in your database.

  1. Organizing Column Fields

When organizing your data make sure that each column has an appropriate header and that addresses are broken up so that suites and floors all have their own column. For example:

123 ABC Road, 4th Floor should not look like this in one column

Address Address
123 ABC Road, 4th Floor (Wrong)
123 ABC Road                 (Wrong)

4th Floor

123 ABC Road                 (Correct) 4th Floor                         (Correct)

When in doubt double check with your printer to see how they would like your data separated for mail and variable processing. The cleaner the data the better. Also avoid adding carriage returns and unnecessary spacing to your lists, both of these can cause errors in mail processing and variable data processing, if there are extra spaces in areas of your data the spaces will show in the finished printed product as well. Remember your list will print exactly as processed. For example:

First Name Last Name
John Q.(space) Sample


The finished product will look like this:    John Q.     Sample

The highlighted section represents extra tailing spacing at the end of the first name when a list has extra spaces and is processed those spaces will appear when printed.

I hope that these five tips help you in your data cleansing endeavors and if you would like more information on how Premier can help you, please email us at

Written by Donna Moulton

Direct Mail It’s Science

Friday, May 26th, 2017

“Neuromarketing research shows physical advertisements have a pronounced effect on consumer decision-making”-USPS

Neuromarketing combines multiple disciplines including neuroscience and psychology and is being used to answer questions about marketing, consumer behavior, and advertising. Recently the USPS worked with Temple University to explore how customers perceived and engaged with physical and digital marketing advertisements. They used 3 types of measurement: eye tracking, core biometrics and functional magnetic resonance imaging.

Eye tracking: Works by using a camera and infrared technology monitor you eye movements speed and duration of attention. This test tracks visual attention

Core Biometrics: Works by placing sensors on fingertips that measure heart rate, skin conductance (sweat) and motion respiration. This test gauges the depth of emotional engagement.

Functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging: This scanner works by measuring the brains change in oxygenated blood flow to show what parts of the brain are activated during a task or experience. This test pinpoints specific deep-brain activity beyond surface cognitive function (think empathy and reward)

The below chart shows each factor:

What did we learn?

  • When viewing physical ads including direct mail, participants had a stronger emotional response and remembered details better.
  • Physical ads were found to be slower to get one’s attention at first glances, but they leave a longer lasting impact for easy recall when making a buying decision.
  • Digital ads will capture attention quicker, but for longer lasting impact a physical mail-piece is the superior option that could lead to future purchases.

Let us know what you think of this new service

Offset & Digital Press Specifications

Wednesday, February 8th, 2017










When designing for print it is generally a good rule of thumb to keep in mind the type of stock and method of printing you would like to use for your printed piece. Depending on the stock thickness or size of your piece it may or may not fit the print method you have in mind. To help you better understand printing press specifications we have created a short list of some of our most popular presses. For example here are the specs for our newest press:

HP T230 Inkjet Web press Printer:

Paper Thickness: 16# Text to 7pt Cover

Maximum Web Width: 20.50” roll

Maximum Image Area: 19.62“ x 72.00”

Minimum Web Width: 12.36“ roll

No Print Border: 0.875”

Click HERE to be directed to our Resources & Support area of our site to view the rest of our offset and digital press specifications.

For more information on how Premier can help email us at Better yet, send us some examples of your current work and we will provide ideas for effective enhancements and redesign at no cost!

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