Book Printing Services

Written by Christopher Ransom
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When we talk about book printing services, we're talking about a suite of services offered by book printers to help you get your book into print. As anyone who's done even a little bit of homework on the subject knows, the line between book printing, publishing, marketing and distribution can blur in a hurry. For this reason, we'll take a quick look at the most common book printing services available to you. Selecting a printer who offers a large variety of services to you might indicate success and experience, but that doesn't mean you need all of those services to meet your goals.

A good question to ask your printer is, "What is your core competency?" The car repair company Midas started out by specializing in mufflers before moving on to brakes, shocks and tune-ups. Nike made its name making revolutionary running shoes before becoming an outfitter for every sport imaginable. Similarly, your book printer might offer marketing and distribution solutions in addition to its book printing services, but its core competency might be printing quality hardcover books at the lowest price. But, just as it wouldn't be cost-effective for you to have Midas do your muffler, drive across town to have so and so do your brakes, etc ... you'll probably get a better package price by keeping most of your book printing services under one roof.

Essential Book Printing Services

Here's a look at the basic essentials. A good book printer should accept your book in multiple formats-in paper hard copy, on a computer disk, or as an email attachment formatted in Adobe PDF or Microsoft Word. That should cover the manuscript itself, but of course you're going to want your book to have an attractive cover. A good book printer should have some options for helping you design and print the cover. Glass or matte film laminate capability is best because it offers you a durable, color-friendly cover that will stand the tests of time. Next you will need to choose a binding method. A versatile printer should offer hardcover and soft cover books bound using either Smythe-sewn or adhesive methods, which are most desirable, as well as spiral, comb, or three ring binding for the more budget conscious. A choice of paper and inks will also play a role in the quality and appearance of your book, so ask your printer for ideas to round out these look and feel elements of your book printing services.

Lastly, ask you printer about what happens after the first print run is complete. The costs of additional print runs for when your book sells out and you need more copies may sway your initial order one way or another. Then there is of course shipping and storage. Some printers will offer you a storage solution so you don't have to take immediate delivers of all of your order at one time, or perhaps they will be willing to ship to multiple addresses as your needs dictate. Optional marketing, advertising and distribution solutions are nice add-ons, so ask about these as well. But starting with these basics will take you a long way towards finding the right package of book printing services.

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