Have a question about the design or the printing of your publication?Don’t be afraid. The only bad questions out there are the ones that don’t get asked!


Cassandra Atchison, Marketing Coordinator for Modern Litho, has assembled some of the most frequently asked questions together and has answered them below.

1. How does my publication or marketing piece get addressed for mailing?

It is important to think about your mail panel! The Post Office is continually updating the requirements for the mailing panel on printed pieces. And it does directly affect the cost of postage based on how your piece is addressed.

Here are some things to consider: Is it a self –mailer? Does it fold? How many tabs does it need? Will it require a label sheet and polybag? Can we use a Cheshire label? All of these must be thought about in the design phase, not after the piece is printed. Your Account Executive and Customer Service Consultant can help explain the best options for your needs.

2. What rate will my piece mail?

If it’s nonprofit or periodical there are forms you must fill out to get approved before mailing. We can also help you apply for nonprofit or periodical rates with the Post Office. Often customers don’t even know that these exist and it does make a difference on how much postage you pay in the end.

Visit these client resources to learn more about the mailing forms:

Applying for Non-Profit Additional Entry (USPS Form 3623)

Application for Mailing Periodicals (USPS Form 3500)

Applying for Periodical Publication Additional Entry (USPS Form 3510)

3. What is so special about mailing with Modern Litho?

Unlike other printers, our mailroom is located 50 feet from our bindery. That means we can literally bind and finish your piece, then mail it the very same day! On top of that, our mail is treated differently when it leaves our plant. Instead of going to the local Post Office, it is taken directly to a primary sort facility and headed for nationwide distribution that same day. We are also a USPS plant load facility and have a USPS employee who works right along side us to ensure your mail is processed correctly and out the door!

4. Should I add “coating” to my piece?

Coating protects your print piece from rubbing and scratching during production, mailing and shipping. It also helps the ink to dry faster and can provide various textures. You might consider adding coating when you have a piece with heavy ink coverage especially if it is black or blue. Also, heavy cover stocks usually require coating to achieve the best results in your finished product.

We offer several different types of coating and they all enhance the look of your piece. The latest is our soft touch aqueous which gives a rich tactile experience. Click here for a link if you’d like to see a sample! https://modernlitho.com/contact-us/

5. What are some ways I can save money on my color publication?

Color placement within your publication is key. If it is not 4/4 (4 color throughout), place your color on 16 page, 8 page, or 4 page signatures to make it more cost efficient. Your Account Executive can help with that and even send you layout sheets to help explain it better.

6. What is bleed and why do you need it?

Bleed is the term used to describe the run off of an image when it comes to the very edge of a page. Most files that run off the page need 1/8” bleed all the way around the page. Can’t tell you how many customers forget this.

We need to bleed to give a little extra image area for trimming. Our cutters are pretty slick; but they can’t always hit the image right on the line. Having a 1/8 inch bleed prevents a white hairline from going around the edge of the page.

If printing terminology is not your thing, check out our post on printing terms. It will help you “speak the language”. https://modernlitho.com/2012/11/printing-term-dictionary/

7. How should I format my files?

Don’t send us printer spreads! Just single page PDF’s. At Modern Litho, we’ll place and position them for you in our prepress department.

8. What’s the one thing you’d tell a client about working with a printer?

Get to know your CSR! As you probably know, CSR’s are the person that the customer works with most. They are there to help you and get you any information you need about your project. They work very hard to make sure you are happy and well informed.

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