We have probably printed well over a million postcards. We have customers who regularly have us print 50,000 to 100,000 pieces. Some we mail on behalf of the customer, some we send to our customer for them to do their own mailings. Unfortunately, we can’t make you a graphic designer on this website. So here are just a couple of suggestions – things to do and not do.
Just like every other piece of mail, a postcard requires something to show what class of mail it is and how it was paid for. If you are using our mailing service we will add our indicia before printing. If you are using another mail house they should provide you with their permit information, again, prior to printing.
Please refer to the USPS documentation for exact permit and addressing regulations.
For the purpose of this website, keep in mind that your postcards will require the space for the indicia and the address. Typically an area 1” x 1” is sufficient for the indicia and an area 3.5” x 4” is necessary for the address and the bar code.
Design Hint #1: All mail pieces will have an Intelligent Mail Bar Code on them. If you do not use a mailing house (that is, do it yourself with labels) then the Post Office will add the bar code. And it may well be placed directly over some important text on your postcard. See our templates at www.ezdiscountprinting.com/mailing/postcards-mailing for clean layout designs.
Fonts – You may have a hundred fonts to choose from. That is not a challenge to use as many as you can. Stick to one, at most two fonts for your postcards. Certain fonts play well with others. Search the Internet for font families. Remember, you can achieve a clean look with judicious use of bold , italics and different sizes while using the same font.
Readability – Part of your font choice should be respect for the person who will receive your postcard. An older audience may appreciate a simple font in a larger size rather than that great Gothic font you found on the Internet. Then again, if you’re promoting your band, “The Modern Goths”, go for it.
Graphics – Depending upon the size you choose you may have a lot of space on your postcards – plenty of real estate to tell your story and show great graphics, including photos and logos. Just remember that your mail piece represents you, but you’re giving it to someone else to read. Always keep your audience in mind. And don’t be afraid of “white space.”
“Bleed” – Now we need to get slightly technical. When a color continues to the very edge of paper that is called a “bleed” and it looks more professional than a white border. But a printing press cannot apply ink to the edge of a paper, so how do we do it? By printing oversize and trimming back. The most common bleed size is .125”. In order to print a finished Every Door Direct Mail post card that is 6.5″ x 9″ with color running to the edges (“full bleed”) the card must be originally designed at 6.75” x 9.25”. After printing that 1/8 “ will be trimmed off to the correct size.
Design Hint #2: Keep all important text and graphics (such as logos) within 1/8” of the final trim lines.
This is important. If you include your photo – or for that matter a logo or any graphic – it must be in high resolution, 300 DPI (“dots per inch”). And you will probably not be able to take an image from the Internet. Images on the web appear the same regardless of whether they are 72 dpi or 300 dpi. The only difference will be in the time it takes to load the image. So a professional web designer will reduce all images to 72 dpi to save loading time, and simultaneously make those images unacceptable for printing. Please don’t blame us – we had nothing to do with it.