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2014 BEST Office Services: Healdsburg Printing, Inc.

Author: Bonnie Durrance
May, 2014 Issue

We’re actively involved with our customers. We know them personally, and we try to accommodate their needs.” —Joe Vetter

 
If you’ve worked and slaved to get your brochure or booklet just right, and you pick it up from the printer and your heart sinks—you’re probably not at Healdsburg Printing, where, as owner Joe Vetter recalls, he let one client bring in his laptop to tweak his project ‘til they got it right. That kind of personal service is what distinguishes a long-running, successful business like his from one that may not survive the next recession.
 
Healdsburg Printing does old-fashioned offset printing, with the big presses and paper rolling through for newspapers, local weeklies and flyers, and also state-of-the-art digital printing. It’s been in business for 19 years.
 
Vetter says he likes printing the local weeklies. “It’s like a community service. And it’s paid journalism, too. It’s not just random stuff that’s up on the Internet. They have to have people who know how to write and know how to dig into things.” It prints the local papers for Healdsburg, Windsor, Cloverdale and Sebastopol, among others.
 
Vetter also has kept up with the times. “We got into digital to supplement the newspapers. The idea was to offer one-stop insert and flier printing. We have it set up so the newspaper’s customers can get a hold of us directly, send us their file, and we print can it and package it into their newspaper as we process them every week. They don’t have to worry about it at all.”
 
It also does books. “We’ve been working with the Redwood Writers,” he says. “We do all their buyer printing, their newsletter and the whole nine yards. Through that, we’ve gotten in touch with a few people who’ve done smaller books, children’s books and coloring books, that sort of thing.”
 
Some say that with all the online information, printing is really becoming obsolete. Vetter disagrees. “If anything, what they’ve come to find out with the Internet is that you need both,” he says. “Mendocino College eliminated its printed class schedules completely for a full year, not even printing any hand-held copies. Then it decided it had better get back to printing. It’s not quite the full run it was doing before, but it’s pretty close.”
 
Vetter has seen the business change over the past 19 years, and he’s adjusted his business model accordingly. “A lot of the publications we were doing back then are gone. And in the process, we’ve downsized or reorganized to accommodate what we think is the viable stuff and just kept going with that. So far, it’s worked.”
 
For Vetter and for Healdsburg Printing, success is all about customer service. “We’re such a small group that we’re all actively involved with our customers. We know them personally, and we try to accommodate their needs whether we can do it in-house or not. If they come up with a project we can’t do economically, I’ll find them somebody who can. It’s all about customer service.”

 

 

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