Planning to Print Letterhead for Your Business?
Here’s What You Need to Know
When you check in at a hotel, you will usually see stationery with a ballpoint pen on top of the bedside table. This is provided by the hotel to give guests somewhere to write notes in. The notepad is usually printed with the hotel letterhead – and this is very much part of their print marketing campaign. When you write something on the notepad and bring it home, the name of the hotel will be embedded in your mind as a customer – which is great for their branding. When you give the note to someone else, they will immediately notice what’s on the letterhead and be aware that the hotel or the hotel’s location exists, making it possible to check in at the same establishment in the future. This is precisely the reason why you should include letterhead printing as part of your overall print promotional campaign. Being the useful item that it is, simply including your logo in a notepad or a legal-sized paper can imprint your brand name in the minds of prospective customers.
Here, we will look at the basics of letterhead marketing, how you can effectively design letterheads, and how you can look for the best printing company out there.
What is Letterhead Marketing?
First, what exactly are letterheads? Also called letterhead page or letterhead paper, this is the heading usually printed on the upper part of a sheet of paper. It includes the company name and address, logo, contact information, and others even have a distinct background pattern. For modern letterhead printing, the logo does not necessarily have to be on top of the page – it can be on the left or right side, or even at the bottom of the page.
For companies launching a full-fledged print marketing campaign, it is important to include custom letterhead to the list. If you’re a business owner and you would like to send out a payment reminder to a supplier, for example, the communication looks more official if it is printed on paper with your company letterhead. Think of law offices who send out legal correspondence to their clients. If the letter is printed without the logo and name of the law office, do you think that it would look authentic or believable? Perhaps not.
Aside from making your business communications look more authentic, you print letterheads for marketing purposes. Any type of letter that you send out to customers, suppliers, and business partners that have your letterhead in it will help strengthen the identity of your brand. Just like business cards, a custom letterhead printed on high-quality paper will boost your brand’s image. Compare sending out price quotations to customers on plain white paper versus a print stationary that has your letterhead in it. Which one will they be more impressed by? More than just leaving a lasting impression, letterheads are simply a great way to complement the rest of your print marketing campaign. Everything might be going digital these days, but there is still no match to the customer experience left by having something tangible that they can read, see, and feel.
Things to Remember about Letterhead Design
Next, what are the things that you need to remember when designing the letterhead itself? For this, it pays to already have a company logo. The logo should be included in all your printed marketing materials for a consistent look. If you don’t have a company logo designed yet, create one or have a professional graphic designer make one for you. For the letterhead, here are a few tips to remember about the design:
- Research about the printing process to be used.
When looking for a company to order letterhead from, there are two options that you can select: digital or offset. Digital printing companies use desktop printers to create marketing materials printed with company logos. This can be a good option for small batches but if you want professional-looking custom letterhead products, offset is the way to go. As the name implies, this type of printing process is where the ink does not have direct contact with the paper. Huge printing presses with the latest in offset printing technology is utilized to produce professional-looking prints.
Another good thing about offset printing is that once the design is set, you can produce anywhere from hundreds to thousands of prints within a short span of time. If you want to order letterhead pages, offset printing might be the better choice – especially for huge batches. One more advantage when going for this option is that the per piece price goes down as you add more to your order – making it more cost-efficient in the end.
- Design the letterhead accordingly.
As mentioned earlier, if you will print stationary that includes your letterhead, it is better to already have a logo designed for your brand. The overall look of all your printed marketing materials should complement the logo. Let’s say that you are a small interior design firm. You want to showcase your talent in interior design so your letterhead should be colorful and artsy. At the same time, you don’t want to overwhelm your clients with too much going on in the paper – so it still must have that delicate balance between creativeness and formality. If you’re a law firm, your design should be understated and a bit formal, considering your clientele. All in all, the custom letterhead must have a design that complements your logo and represents your image as a brand.
- Know which information to include and exclude from your design before you print letterhead.
Next, which information should you include and exclude from when you print letterheads? In your business card, you might have the following information included:
- Business name
- Name of the business owner (or job position)
- Office address
- Mobile number
- Email address
- Website URL
- Twitter handle
- Facebook page
- Instagram name
You might think that it’s a good idea to also include all this information in your letterhead, but again, you would not want to overwhelm your audience or make the page look overcrowded. These are all included in your business card, anyway, so limit the contact details that you will place in your letterhead design. For instance, law firm clients usually need to visit a physical office for consultation. In your letterhead, you can include your company name, phone number, and physical address. You can skip the website in this case – and simply provide clients with a business card if they want to check out your website. You may also want to include a line or two about your legal expertise. Print letterhead with all the crucial business information.
On the other hand, if you are selling products online, for example, it is more important to include your website URL and social media account information. This is a more visual type of business so clients need to see what it is that you have to offer. On the letterhead design, include your business name and website, as well as your Instagram name – if that is what you usually use for products placement. If you’re a real estate agent and you need clients to give you a call over the phone, include only your name, job title, and phone number on the letterhead printing design.
After deciding which information to include and leave out of the letterhead, look at the overall design and make sure that it represents your brand well; it does not look too busy; and there is still plenty of space for customers to write notes in.
- Experiment with contact details placement.
There used to be a time when letterheads were strictly placed on top of the sheet. Now that graphic designers have become more creative, you can go order letterhead with your logo and contact information placed at the bottom of the page, or either on the left or right side of the page. There are even some companies that “watermark” their stationery with their company logo. This means that the entire page has a faint print of the logo – but using ink that is almost transparent. This way, whatever is printed in black and white or handwritten on the paper can still be read clearly.
If you want, you can experiment with contact details placement by printing a small batch of custom letterhead that is printed on top of the page. The other batch can have the letterhead printed at the bottom or one side of the page. Whichever placement gets the most response means that it is the more effective and visually appealing one, so use that in future orders.
- Match the stationery with envelopes and second sheets.
When you’re giving away printed promotional materials, you want something that customers can also use. Instead of just sending one page with your letterhead in it, why not send a second blank page using the same paper, as well as a matching envelope? If you sent out a price quotation, the customer can use the second blank page and envelope to send you a response in kind. Quality and aesthetics is important here, so make sure that when you order letterhead, the print stationary matches the paper stock used for the blank sheet and the envelope. The envelope can be blank, have a matching print with your letterhead sheet, or simply have a color or design that complements the original letterhead.
Consider these Things when Looking for a Letterhead Printing Company
When you print stationary with your company letterhead, choose a printing process that produces professional-looking results. Keep in mind that image is important, and you don’t want to disappoint your customers by sending out letters printed on plain, thin, or low-quality paper. Offset printing is the better choice but if you are ordering just a small batch, digital might save you money in the end. There are no right or wrong choices here – go for the option that works best for you.
When it comes to size, you can order letterhead that comes in these varieties:
- Standard Size Letterhead (measures 8.5” x 11”)
- Legal Size Letterhead (measures 8.5” x 14”)
- Tabloid Size Letterhead (measures 11” x 17”)
Standard sized letterheads are used by majority of business owners. Legal sized letterheads are suitable for legal documents in the United States and the United Kingdom. The larger tabloid sized letterheads can be seen in the US and Canada – and are mostly used for promotional marketing materials.
When it comes to the paper stock used, you can take your pick from textured linen or smooth letterheads. Textured linen uses 70# paper stock in bright white; while smooth letterheads use 70# paper stock in a super-smooth bright white shade.
Of course, you should also take into account the quality of print offered by the company that will print stationary letterheads for you. How long have they been in the business and do they offer a wide variety of printed promotional products? What kind of printing process and equipment do they use? What is the turnaround time? What are the costs involved for ordering a minimum of, say, 100 pieces of legal letterhead?
If you don’t have a letterhead printing design yet, there are some companies that offer downloadable templates or online tools that you can use. Blank templates where you can upload your logo and edit the contact information is a very useful tool to have. Online tools that do not require any download are also great to use. These will save you a lot of time and money as compared to hiring a professional graphic designer to design the letterheads for you. If you already have a logo, this is a more practical approach to having your letterhead design.
True enough, letterheads are a must-have in any print promotional campaign. When you use these with business cards, envelopes, notepads, brochures, and flyers, you can have all these tangible materials represent what you are all about as a brand – and impress your customers in the process.