As a CMO, it’s your job to maintain and oversee your corporate strategy and vision. With this, you’re also in charge of the daunting task of justifying company resources and ensuring your marketing budget is being spent in the right ways for maximum effectiveness - so it’s no surprise that according to a recent study commissioned by Accenture, CMO’s top priorities are profitable growth and operational efficiency.

Ensuring growth and efficiency is no small feat in today’s hyper-fragmented world, where there are unlimited ways and channels to get your message across. One of those primary channels continues to be print - but globalization and the increased focus on environmental impact have introduced new challenges into making print a sustainable medium.

Modern print management solutions are one way of addressing these challenges.

The right print management solutions can make your printing process more sustainable and efficient, and allow you to cut costs while maintaining brand consistency and quality.

To ensure your branding and printing is optimized toward being as efficient as possible, ask yourself these five questions.

1) Is my brand consistently used across my company’s footprint?

Brand consistency isn’t just about color consistency - it’s also about the use of corporate identity such as fonts, papers, and quality. Every interaction someone has with your brand makes an impact on how they perceive your company, so it’s important that perception is uniform and on-brand across all materials.

Take the famous example of the iconic Coca-Cola brand. Coca-Cola is one of the most recognized brands in the world, transcending barriers and languages. Yes, they have a huge advertising budget - but they also have extreme consistency. The script has largely remained unchanged since the early 1900s.

Your company may never rise to Coca-Cola level fame, but take a page out of their book and ensure the usage of your brand style, look, and feel remains consistent across all marketing materials to gain affinity and loyalty.

Your print management system should store all your company’s content centrally, and chooses print houses that can reproduce your brand to your exact specifications. This ensures that your brand is consistent, and your logo is never a millimeter out of place.

2) Can I quantify how much my company spends on prints today?

The job of keeping track of print budgeting and inventory is daunting enough, but this is a giant hassle for multi-location companies that produce materials in various language versions or for different sub-brands.

Even more difficult than access to data on print volumes is data on shipping and handling costs – even though these can easily outweigh production costs.

Many modern print management solutions provide this data real time, and allow you to audit your spending by country, office and even individual employee. Printing can be as transparent and manageable as digital marketing.

3) Do I know who in my organization is allowed to order print materials?

Almost everyone in your company is going to use printed materials at one point or another, be it for training or advertising or business cards.

If all of these people are allowed to request print jobs independently of one another, this could put your company and budget at risk, and heightens the possibility that print jobs will be over- or under-ordered.

Consider putting a system in place that allows you to manage these roles and permissions in one centralized location to avoid inefficiencies. A print management system with a centralized content storage platform makes it easy for you to delegate a company’s printing responsibilities to a few employees, creating the basis for a more structured and cost-effective system.

4) How much of what I print is used for its purpose and do I have large quantities that go to waste?

Let’s face it - you’re a CMO, so you don’t have time to painstakingly hunt through old marketing materials, counting what was used versus what was printed. But because one of your key metrics is ensuring efficient use of your marketing budget, wasted materials are important to keep track of.

Some printers charge high premiums for ordering small batches of materials. Choose a printing solution that won’t penalize you for not ordering huge quantities of materials.

print management solutions that use local print houses often fit the bill. They save your company shipping costs, making it far cheaper to order several batches of printed materials.

5) What impact does my current external print processes have on the environment?

Companies are being held to an increasingly higher standard when it comes to being socially and environmentally conscious. But being “green” can also positively impact a company’s brand and their bottom line - in fact, according to a Nielsen study, fifty-five percent of global online consumers across 60 countries say they are willing to pay more for products and services provided by companies that are committed to positive social and environmental impact.

Consider doing an audit of the resources that are required for transporting material - and ensure those materials are actually used when they arrive at their destination. Where possible, use local printers to lessen the amount of transportation required.

Gelato’s solutions fulfill all these criteria, tackling all the most pressing problems in print.