Zinn Graphics, Inc. November 18, 2014

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News From
Zinn Graphics, Inc.
Idea of
the Week
Marketing Tip
Uncommon Product of the Week
Tech Tip

Add Some Sparkle

Battle of the Businesses

Roll Up Your Sleeves

Pin'Em Down
A Message From Zinn Graphics, Inc.
The Way I See It

The Cold Winter

Many years ago in a remote area in northern Minnesota, a young, inexperienced mayor was asked by the city council if the coming winter was going to be cold or mild. The mayor wanted to be on the safe side, so he told the council that their Minnesota winter was indeed going to be very, very cold. The townsfolk began collecting firewood to get prepared. After several days, the mayor called the local weatherman (who also happened to be inexperienced and new to the area), and asked "Is this coming winter going to be cold?" Without any hesitation, the weatherman replied, "Well, we live in Minnesota, so it appears it’s going to be very cold." So the mayor told the townsfolk to collect more wood. A couple weeks later, the mayor called the weatherman again and asked, "Do you think this will be the coldest winter on record?" and the weatherman replied, "Oh most definitely!" The mayor asked "How can you be so sure?" And the weatherman replied, "The locals in this town have done nothing but collect firewood for the past few weeks."

Here’s the way I see it: A wise man once said, the fewer the facts the stronger the opinion. If you’d like help creating print materials that help you provide the facts and gain a favorable opinion, give us a call today!

Idea of the Week
Add Some Sparkle to Your Next Design With the Illustrator Symbolism Tool

Symbols are art objects that can be used multiple times in Adobe Illustrator documents. Imagine creating effortless, eye-catching designs simply by using typography, shapes, colors, and a few simple effects. That's the power the symbolism tool provides. Using predesigned symbols will save you time and open doors to some very interesting techniques you can apply to your current design projects.

To get started with the symbolism tool, click the Windows tab located in the top menu bar and select Symbols. A new menu box designated just for symbols will appear. This is where you'll find all of the preprogrammed symbols available to use. Existing symbols in the program's library include symbols that lend themselves to nature, shapes, business, sports, and much more.

Open the Symbols Library and select the symbols you'd like to work with, then prepare to have some fun with the symbol sprayer tool. Select Symbol Sprayer from the Tools menu on the left-hand side of your screen.

Determine where you want your symbols to go, and simply click on that area of the canvas to add the selected symbols to your document.

Sure, you can click once and only have a single instance of the selected symbols appear, but the symbol sprayer is so much more fun than that! The sprayer works on your digital canvas similar to a can of spray paint. Click and hold your mouse button, and multiple instances of the same objects will appear. Move the cursor around the canvas to place the objects in different locations as the tool sprays. In a matter of seconds, your canvas will be covered in objects.

Placing symbols on the canvas is only the beginning. There's so much more digital design fun to have with Illustrator's symbolism tool. Other functions available when working with the symbolism tool include:

Working with Illustrator's symbolism tool is fun and easy. It's a great way to add a lot of life to a design without much time or effort. Imagine creating an ocean full of fish or a field full of butterflies almost instantly.

Just be careful. It's easy to get carried away. So no matter what your design project calls for, keep the Illustrator symbolism tool in mind. It's a secret weapon every designer should have in their arsenal.

See more great ideas like this!
Click here to visit the Zinn Graphics, Inc. Ideas Collection.

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Marketing Tip
How to Win Over Your Competitors' Customers

Unless a customer is unhappy or frustrated with their current situation, convincing them to switch to your business is no easy task. Here are a few ways to help you stand apart from your competition and help win over their customers:

  • Boost your convenience factor by increasing your business hours to stay open on days or hours when you competition is closed.

  • Court your prospects and give them the royalty treatment they likely no longer receive with their current company after the honeymoon phase is over.

  • Display your differences from the competition with a comparison chart.

  • Think positive. Rather than focusing on the competitor's weaknesses, focus on your benefits.

  • Consider web re-targeting campaigns that are designed to bring customers and prospects back to your site by featuring targeted ads across your customers' favorite websites, Facebook pages, etc.

  • If your warranty is better than your competition, highlight the differences, such as free lifetime tech support.

  • Make a lucrative offer to your customers to jump ship. For example, offer to pay a customer's early termination fee to become your customer.

  • Offer a competitor discount. For example, save XX% if they switch from XX competitor.

  • If you provide product/service quotes, offer a discount if the person shows you a competitor's quote for the same product/service.

  • Consider offering bundled products/services at a discounted price or bonus items for free.

  • Promote things that may set you apart, such as green practices, local ownership, charitable affiliations, etc.

  • Offer to beat your competitor's sales prices by X percent.

  • Develop creative promotions that offer an extra incentive for customers to choose your business over theirs. For example, “Receive 5% cash back on any purchase."

  • Join the conversation using social media to see what consumers of your products or services are seeking.

  • Gather and promote customer testimonials from those who have switched from the competition.

If you need help designing creative marketing materials to help your business shine, give us a call today!

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Uncommon Product
Promotional Paper Cup Sleeves

Custom printed paper cup sleeves have incredible potential when it comes to getting your marketing message in the hands of your audience… literally. The average person will keep their cup with them for at least 45 minutes, which will also be seen by a handful of people, further increasing your marketing efforts.

Cup sleeves are popular marketing tool anywhere that hot beverages (such as coffee, cocoa or tea) are readily available, such as tradeshows, celebratory events, hotels, convention centers, hospitals, meetings, local cafes, coffee stands, etc. Many businesses will welcome your customized sleeves because it cuts their cost of supplying sleeves or an extra cup for insulation.

Here are a few creative ways to transform an ordinary cup sleeve into a powerful marketing tool: 

  • Design the sleeve as an actual coupon that the user can redeem.

  • Include an exclusive web URL or QR code that can easily be tracked 

  • Design the coffee sleeve as a newsletter with headline news, top 10 tips, useful web resources, etc.

  • Include your logo with a teaser message.

If you'd like help creating the perfect cup sleeve to promote your business, give us a call today!

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Tech Tip
Pin Tabs in Google Chrome

If you're one of the millions of Google Chrome fans, here’s an easy yet often-overlooked tip that can help you organize your browser and avoid tab creep (which is what happens when you open so many browser tabs that it becomes very difficult to find your most used tabs, such as web apps, social media, web mail, etc.).

Google Chrome’s "Pin Tab" feature enables users to lock some of their most frequently used tabs to the left of the browser, as well as shrinking the tabs to the size of an icon so that many browser tabs fit in a very small space.

To utilize this feature, simply right click on a tab in Google Chrome and choose the "Pin Tab" option. This will neatly anchor all popularly used browser tabs. In addition, when using the Pin Tab feature, you can’t accidentally close your important tabs since the "X" disappears once the browsers are pinned. Your pinned browsers will appear every time you open Chrome, making ease of access very convenient.

You can easily move around pinned tabs (for example, if you want your most frequently used tabs on the far left), but note you cannot mix pinned and non-pinned tabs in order of importance. To get rid of a pinned tab, simply right click and choose "Unpin Tab."

If you’d like more ideas for time-saving tips, give us a call today. Our team of printing experts would love to help you in any way possible.

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