Bees & Co
Branding | Digital | Packaging

We have been working with Bees & Co for around a decade, or even longer.

Bees & Co is a prestigious IFA, with many high net worth customers, so to reinforce this it has always been vital they maintain a strong brand image, which portrays their professionalism and high standards.

But as is true of pretty much every sector, Bees & Co customers have become more cost-focused, so the firm has been forced to look into how they can make their service most cost effective without compromising their offerings.

As part of their strategy to decrease their overheads, one comparatively simple fix was the cost of their outward marketing.

This case study concentrates on one simple print order that has reduced costs for Bees & Co immediately and the future, following some research and forward planning.

We were initially approached to reprint some business cards, letterheads and compliment slips. Previously they had chosen incredibly high-end paper stocks for all their business stationery; and on top of that, they had high-end print finishing such as Hot Foiling, Embossing and Thermographic Printing.

It would be wrong to go into exact costs; but an indication might be that in the past they wouldn't see much change from £1,000 for an order of business cards, compliment slips and letterheads.

Our challenge was to produce their business stationery - still achieving the same high-end finish - but at a fraction of the cost.

Our creative team and production management jumped at the challenge. And within a matter of days we came up with a solution that we felt ticked all of the boxes.

The final result looked fantastic, and only took four working days from start to finish. The customer was over the moon, and couldn't believe we had managed to achieve those results at that cost.

The savings on this single print run were in the order of £600 - and as Bees & Co place this order as often as every other month, that is an overall saving of around £3,600 annually.

Are you a Marketing Manager or Print Buyer for your business?

Just imagine what a case you could make for a pay rise, if you could tell your directors that you could save them anywhere near £3,600.00 over a year just on business stationery?

From myself and the team at CBF, we'll leave you with that thought.


Step 1: The stocks

Our paper buyer set to work looking outside the 'usual suspects' to find a paper stock that would still give the "WOW" factor but without the price tag.

Among a range of samples we requested, we settled on a lovely rigid, tactile stock for the business cards, with the equivalent thinner stock for the letterheads and compliment slips -and it all came in on budget.

Step 2: Print

In the past, we had printed their stationery Lithographically to achieve the highest print quality possible, even on lower quantity runs. This is never the most economical option, but produced the quality that Bees & Co required to impress both existing and potential future customers alike.

First, we switched from Lithographic print to Digital. But not just any old Digital print! We ensured everything went through on the HP Indigo Digital press, renowned in the print industry as being the closest reproduction you'll get to Litho quality.

Step 3: Print Finishing

This was certainly our biggest challenge. Apart from the high-end paper stocks, it was always the superior choice of print finishing that really made the Bees & Co stationery stand out. From their striking Gold foiled Bee logo to the Thermographic printed content their stationery, it always oozed quality.

How would we reproduce this high-class finish, at the fraction of the cost?

After numerous calls, we managed to source a local print finisher that was doing something incredibly innovative with their digital print finishing, and it was exactly what we needed.

It turned out there was a way we could digitally foil the iconic Gold Bee logo, producing the same high-end finish as traditional Hot Foiling, but at the faction of the cost, using specialist metallic Gold inks.

They couldn't believe we had managed to achieve that we had, not only in the short time frame but also at the cost. Again we can go into exact figures but lets put in this way, Bees & Co went from not having much change from £1,000.00 after topping up their business stationery to having not much change from £400.00! That is not a typo, I did in fact type £400.00, that is a saving on just one element of their print of around £600.00. Even more impressive is they place this order roughly every other month which means taken over a year that is an overall saving of around £3,600.00.

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