What Circulation Planners Need to Know About Paper

Circulation managers, like everyone else, are under constant pressure to cut costs without cutting sales. That1s why, says Jim Coogan, president of Sante Fe, NM-based consultancy Catalog Marketing Economics, you need to be fluent in the tradeoffs between cutting circulation and cutting production costs. Often you can trim paper weight in lieu of reducing circ and not affect sales at all. Paper merchant BradnerSmith has tools on its Website www.bradnersmith.com to help you calculate the paper needs and costs of your mailing. The tools include:

  • The Yield Differential Calculator, which allows you to determine the differential caused by changes in the basis weight of paper and/or the cost per hundredweight (cwt) of the paper.
  • The Piece Weight Calculator, which shows you the total weight in ounces of the finished piece so that you can determine the postage impact of a paper change.
  • The Paper Calculator, which helps you determine the amount of print necessary to print a catalog. This calculation includes an appropriate percentage of waste based on the pounds of paper required.
  • The Total Cost Calculator, which converts pounds of paper into the total cost of the paper.

There are several more tools available for everything from calculating impositions to determining the paper needed for sheet-fed jobs. Increasing paper and postage costs force us all to become more expert in the ins and outs of print production.

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