The Case Against Booklet Makers

11 03 2009

A common misconception that businesses, churches, and schools make is that purchasing an expensive booklet maker will actually save them money in the long run. What most fail to consider is the ongoing costs of labor and maintenance. They also fail to consider that their staff may not have the experience to produce a professional product.

Costs
In addition to the expensive upfront cost of a booklet maker (even with a lease), you also have the cost of supplies like paper, staples, and other materials. Entry level booklet makers start around $2,500. The cost of having a booklet built by a printing firm is a small fraction of the total cost.

When you add in the fact that you have to pay for paper, toner/ink, and other supplies; the equation just does not make a lot of sense. When you add your costs for labor to have office staff spending a couple of hours printing, collating, and binding the books; you can see that your costs just are not justified.

Professional product
If you have never picked up a do-it-yourself booklet and had it fall apart in your hands, found pages missing, or discovered other major defects, then you’re one of the fortunate few who won’t make the mistake of buying a pricey booklet maker. Booklet making is an art form. Even with fancy machinery, the process of adjusting and fine tuning the device can require a special touch that takes time to learn.

Summary
Professional printers hire knowledgeable staff and own better equipment to do the job. If you look at the cost to have a booklet made, top notch printers charge around $1 per booklet on short runs and that includes full color. For larger runs around 2,000 booklets, the cost per piece is under $.25 – that’s a quarter for full color printing!
Unless you are printing booklets on a very regular basis and have the printing equipment to justify the time-savings, booklet makers just don’t make sense. In fact, the only place you should see one is at a printing company.

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