Winner of Best of the Best

Ad and Plaque

For 13+ years we have been voted Best of the Best by the readers of the Auburn Journal, and we couldn’t be more thankful to our community and our fantastic customers.

Since opening the business in 1946 we have striven to be been involved in the community and has enjoyed giving back. In 1984 Brad and Merrill purchased the business and have since continued to be involved and continue the tradition of giving back and supporting many community events. Being a big part of our community, being involved and giving back is what I am passionate about. I do it because I see a great future for our community and all there is to benefit from for me, our company and my kids.

Besides being such a staple of the community we work hard at being a partner to the land trusts and non-profits locally. We give back to many non-profits and work closely with them to find new ways of attracting donors and new revenue. Using print, email, direct mail, signage and promotional products to elevate their clients message in a cohesive, timely and branded manner. Our clients have seen that the value improves exponentially with a multi-touch approach.

I strongly feel that we are a one of a kind shop in this area with all the equipment and up to date technology that we have in our North Auburn location. Feel free to stop by and see all that we have to offer.

Why am I Santa?

It is not because I enjoy putting my Santa outfit on. I usually get a small room that isn’t heated with no place to sit or set-up. I go through the steps and pull on the big red pants over the bigger blubbery belly. I use my boot hooks to pull on my heavy black boots. Then comes the itchy beard & white gloves & glasses. The final step is a visual inspection so nothing is out of place. Now I am Santa. One thing that I noticed about being Santa, I never need to get in the mood. It just happens when I walk into a room or up on a fire truck. The magic of being Santa just happens. All of this is for other people to see Santa and enjoy the winter magic of Christmas. But I get much more than that. . .

When I walk into a room and kids of all ages run to see me for a handshake, a high five, a fist bump, and most importantly a big Santa bear hug it makes all the work and scratchy beard melt away like spring snow. Then the child’s eyes hook onto Santa’s and it lights me up inside as much as the excitement and wonderment lights up the children.

So I take my seat and prepare for “naughty & nice” of all ages. I always have a few stories to tell when I get up from my big red chair. One small girl about 6 years old couldn’t say out loud when I asked her what she wanted for Christmas; she had to whisper in my ear “I want my mommy to be happy”. Even Santa gets choked up on that one. Then there is always a situation of 2 brothers being a year or so apart. They can’t wait to be the first to tell me what they want, sometimes it becomes “tug of war” for my attention.

Continue reading Why am I Santa?

Raising Money for a Good Cause

This past Saturday I had the privilege of attending the Sutter Auburn Faith Hospital Foundation’s Faith and Fantasy Ball. It was so great to see all the wonderful supporters of our town’s great Hospital!

For the past five years I have personally been a party of the committee that helps put the event together. I have always helped with the decoration and loved every moment of it. We have done themes such as: There’s No Place Like Home (Wizard of Oz), Hollywood on the Hill, Paris, Into the Wild, Golden Masquerade and this year Around the World. The decorations are always exquisite and elaborate. The last few years I have been lucky enough to attend as well and this event is like none other. People are dressed in tuxedos, ball gowns, and depending on the theme, some are dressed to match. It is always great fun to see friends that you see regularly dressed in their absolute best with diamonds around their necks and their hair and make-up made to perfection.

As much fun and glamour as there is involved in these events there is always a reason for raising the funds. Whether it is to raise money for a new piece of machinery needed for the hospital, a new Cardiac Rehab Center or to Cancer Care, there is always a great need for the funds that are raised. This year was very beneficial to the Hospital as they raised over $160,000 through sponsorships (such as ours), silent auction, live auction and attendance.

Sutter Logo

It is such a great event that we as a company and I personally am very happy to be a part of.

What can YOU build out of a pallet?

If you are on any social media platform you have most likely seen at least one project made out of a recycled pallets, especially if you follow us on social media! There are so many ways to take a plain wooden pallet and make it into something AMAZING and NEW! We ran a contest amongst our employees to see what they could make out of the pallets that our paper is delivered on. It was such a huge success and fun project that we decided to do it again, but this time we are inviting our customers, friends and family to build something.

We started this project because we like the idea of recycling. Here at APi-Marketing we do a lot of that, whether its pallets (our employees are always making stuff from them), 99% of all paper we use, press plates, or just soda cans. We try and let as little go to the landfill as we can.

Project time starts now! Come over to our shop and grab a pallet or two or ten and start building! We get new pallets almost every day so if we don’t have what you are looking for, check back again. Look on Pinterest, Google, any social media platform, or just something you have been contemplating in your head and find a fun, useful or extravagant project to build out of pallets. These projects will be displayed at our VIP Open house in Mid-October. There is a kicker, for those who want to be included in a silent auction on the projects, 100% of the money raised will be donated to a local non profit organization (to be determined prior to event).

How do I win and what do I get you ask? WELL, the winner will be determined by votes cast at the VIP Open House. The winner will receive $250 worth of gift cards to one or more of the following: Flyers Gas Stations, Old Town Pizza, Center for the Arts, Machado Orchards, or Local Heroes (or a combination of them).

Of course there are some rules….

  1. Has to be made mostly of pallets.
  2. Anything added on must be recycled from something else, not purchased new for this project. (Exceptions are anything used to fasten such as nails, glue or staples and anything used to decorate such as paint or stain)
  3. Must “RSVP” your project prior to or on September 11th, 2017 (whether or not it is finished) so we know how many projects to be expecting and to make sure you and a guest are on the list for an invitation to the Open House. http://bit.ly/palletRSVP
  4. Must be able to bring your project to APi-Marketing or arrange for us to pick-up for our VIP Open House in mid October.

That is all, now go have fun and create a new masterpiece!

World Environment Day

We here at APi-Marketing LOVE the outdoors so we as a group decided this year to celebrate World Environment Day by getting out and enjoying the fabulous outdoor recreation we have in Northern California.

World Environment day is about getting out and enjoying nature. To breathe in the beauty and remembering that we need to keep our planet healthy and safe!

World Environment Day is the biggest annual event for positive environmental action. This unofficial holiday started in 1972 and is always held on June 5th every year. This year’s theme was Connecting People to Nature and a few of us did just that. We went out and explored the outdoors, listened to the tranquility of the outdoors and just soaked up all that mother earth has gifted us with. This year’s theme invites you to think about how we are part of nature and how intimately we depend on it. It challenges us to find fun and exciting ways to experience and cherish this vital relationship.

 
 

Although the official World Environment Day was June 5th which was a Monday we went out the weekend before.

We invite you to get out and explore the benefit to living in Northern California. Look for future posts about where to go and what to see around us!

Be One With Nature

There are many days we like to celebrate here at API-marketing, especially the ones that have to do with the great outdoors. Although we are an indoor company the majority of our employees love the fresh air and serenity of being outside. This year as a group we have decided to celebrate World Environment Day. As a company we work hard to be good to the environment. We have taken out a lot of our landscape in front of our shop, we water as little as possible, we recycle everything we can and we make sure to get outside and enjoy what mother earth has given us. This is why we have chosen to celebrate World Environment Day.

World Environment Day is a day to connect with the environment around you. It is a day that was created to encourage worldwide awareness and action for the protection of our environment. It is a day to take action and do something for our world. Whether doing it locally, nationally or globally take a moment in time to do something that will give back to our future selves. It is something that can be done on your own, with a group or even an organization. This year’s theme is “Connecting people with Nature”. It is telling us to get out and enjoy nature, it’s beauty and the world around us.

Although this wonderful day is falling on Monday June 5th and we can’t close up we have chosen to celebrate in the days leading up to it. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn to see what we have been up to!

 

Pallet Re-purposing Contest

It all started with an office chat about how we can celebrate Earth Day as a company. Lot’s of ideas were thrown around such as helping to clean up the American River, cleaning up a park or even going on a hike as a company but none sounded like something we could get a lot of hype from our coworkers for. After pondering for a bit we thought about building something and then thought of what we could build and why it would pertain to Earth Day. Then the light bulb hit… We have an almost endless supply of pallets (it’s what all out paper comes in on) and we have some creative employees!

We started off as maybe building something as a company and then we decided to make it a little more interesting and make it a competition. To add to the fun we made sure that everything that went in to the project was to be re-purposed excluding the fasteners (nails, screws, hinges) and the paint or stain. We got a lot of excitement out of all our coworkers and had almost the whole shop on board to make something. As time went by it dwindled down to four solid projects and a few people wishing they had time to do one. As we got closer to finishing we asked one of our closest customers Preserva Products if they had any stain lying around that we could use for our projects. They graciously gave us four gallons of different color stains to use and they were beautiful colors.

Rae our main customer service gal made a beautiful coffee table with her husband Kyle. Danielle our graphic designer made an awesome windowsill planter box and even re-purposed a plant from her compost pile. My project was a joint effort with my husband Ian and we made a little table for our three year old daughter (chairs to come later).

The projects all turned out amazing but there was one that stood well above the others. Jordan our WINNER made an out of this world bench and table. The bench includes a re-purposed galvanized metal bucket that can be used with ice for drinks. He even created the star stencil out of other pallet boards to be able to burn the star into the table.

The pallet project competition was a HUGE hit and really made a bigger impact on social media than we had thought. After only four days of Facebook voting we reached over 6400 people and almost 4500 of those were organic. We had twenty-five shares, sixty-seven comments and three hundred and twenty-three likes on Facebook. It by far exceeded any of our expectations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Stay tuned for another pallet re-purposing competition later in the Summer that will include our friends, family and customers!

Friend Before Salesman: Steve The Encyclopedia and Time and Money Saver

Black and white image of steve holding a yellow hat
Click here to go to Steve’s company profile

The past few months have been filled with Steve’s background and life full of amazing adventures (somehow all print related). This is our final installment, we hope you have enjoyed everything so far. To see the previous blog post, click here.

Steve the Encyclopedia
These days there are other, digital things to be had in addition to print and Steve has shown his knack for learning quickly in these areas as well, and adding them to his internal encyclopedia. Just ask him about any of these things:

letterpress, foil, emboss, die cutting, offset press, digital press, silkscreen on Metalisized paper, glass, wood, and metal. These special processes are used for packaging, labels, specialized product labels, magazines and other publications, brochures, business cards. Steve has extensive knowledge in how to work with color and density in any kind of print and has always been a great resource when our design department needs advice on how to adjust colors for better prints.

Steve the Money and Time Saver
Steve has been involved in more than a few of our most intricate printing projects including the packaging for Primeau Water Filters, a product for home use in places with questionable water sources, and Cello Chocolate, our favorite Gluten Free organic chocolate makers! He made sure each piece of the project was clearly defined, good quality images and prints, the packing physically fit, took international sales into consideration and coordinated an exceptionally smooth experience. He has saved these people and others countless time in research and development, production time, and even trips to our office by bring product and proofs to the clients.

Well now that we are done talking about what makes Steve so great, let’s talk about the ways in which he can make your business life easier:

    • Personalized service. He tailors the level of service to your needs. He isn’t always trying to up sell because he really wants what is best for you, the customer. And your needs are what matters most.
    • Advice. Based on his knowledge and experience, he will always have an answer. If he isn’t 100% sure about something he will go and confirm it/find out the answer. There is no problem too big or too small.
    • He will run your proofs and samples back and forth between APi-marketing and you, so that you don’t have to pay for shipping or wait for it to get there in the mail, and so that he can be there to answer any questions or concerns you may have.
    • Easy to deal with. No sleazy sales guy here, his number one concern is getting you the best quality work possible.
    • Peace of mind. Some customers have actually come back from online printers to APi-marketing because they appreciate Steve’s honesty about what is included in pricing, attention to detail, and catching potential problems before things go to print. Often, with poor quality prints online, you won’t be able to get a reprint, and waiting around for them to get their act together is a royal pain.
    • Save time on time-sensitive items because 90% of everything we offer is in-house.
    • Save on shipping. Come pick up your stuff or have us deliver it.
    • Save wait time on getting your mailing together. We print, sort, and send in-house rather than send out to a mail house. This saves you 3-4 days of processing and you won’t have to coordinate between all the different companies handling your mailing.

What can you do with all your new peace of mind, free time and money?  Perhaps you can invest in your business, try out that new software program that could save you thousands if only you had the time, build your portfolio, just focus on other pressing business matters OR, take some time to travel, see your family, pet the animals. You deserve to have peace of mind when it comes to your marketing materials.

Want to work with Steve? Just give us a call and we can set you up: 530.885.9674.

Friend Before Salesman: Steve the Local Printer

Black and white image of steve holding a yellow hat
Click here to go to Steve’s company profile

The past few weeks have been filled with Steve’s background and life full of amazing adventures (somehow all print related). To see the previous blog post, click here.

The Local Printer
Again, Steve could not resist the calling of the print business, and he was soon back in San Fransisco working at various print shops. He met his wife there, and moved to Berkley to be near her. They considered raising their family in Nevada City, and at the time, there was already a print shop in business in western Nevada County. Also there were no decent jobs for his wife, a nurse. So they bided their time and when they made the move in 1988, the existing print shop had liquidated their assets and moved on. His wife got some double shifts “down the hill” that more than offset their costs and Steve started his own print shop, Northstar Printing, just like he always wanted to do. He knew print like the back of his hand and forged some really solid customer relationships in the area. In 1994 his dear wife passed away due to cancer and he carried on with his work, managing for some time. Eventually, the print industry started to change dramatically and shifted toward digital technology. With this shift came machines that were four times as expensive as the machines he was using. Working with outdated machines at his business size simply was not a way to make enough money to purchase new ones. Only the larger companies survived because they were able to cut their prices while still buying this new technology.

Prices go down with each recession and they have not gone up again due to changes in technology. The 1980’s through 90’s were the best years for print. Steve realized he would have to close up shop and began to search for a printer who would be in business longer, and where he could take his clients that he cared for so much. He did not want to leave them stranded without a local printer. When he came across APi-marketing (then Auburn Printers) in 2007, he called them up and explained his situation and what he wanted to do. Brad and Merrill immediately recognized the importance of having him as a resource and offered him a job. He was pretty happy to still be in contact with his clients and use his knowledge of print in a stable environment.

Really, he could be retired by now, but chooses to keep working in the industry that he is passionate about. Being a business owner has also helped him understand and connect with new clients.

Join us again for the next installment of “Friend Before Salesman” in which we take a look at all the ways Steve has been saving his clients from headaches by offering expert and creative solutions to their problems. To see the next installment click here.

Want to work with Steve? Just give us a call and we can set you up: 530.885.9674.

Friend Before Salesman: Steve the Adventurer

Black and white image of steve holding a yellow hat
Click on the photo to go to Steve’s company profile

The past few weeks have been filled with Steve’s background and life full of amazing adventures (somehow all print related). To see the previous blog post, click here.

Adventurer
As did so many young people out of the military in his time, Steve got the hankering for some adventure. He went to Europe with a friend from college to explore what was on the other side of the globe. They immersed themselves in cultures and enjoyed the sights and sounds of the countrysides. When traveling with other people, one gets to know them in a different light than at home. Unfortunately, things got a little sour when he realized his friend was not enough so upstanding as he had thought. While in Spain, she asked him to help her steal some produce from some of the beautiful gardens in the area. “Here she was, with lots of money in her purse, thinking it would be fun to take food away from these people who were worse off than her,” Steve remembers that it was at that moment that he realized he had to part ways with his friend.

While in Germany, he had met some people who had said that should he ever need work during his travels, he should come to Munich and earn some cash. The 1972 Olympics would soon be drawing to the area, and there was a lot of work to be had. He decided to take them up on their offer and made the trip. He arrived there on Christmas day, 1971 and got a job at a silk screen printer. The shop had just gotten a new machine with an automatic feed. Most machines were manual back then, and Steve had some experience with feeders, so they offered to teach him silk screening if he would figure out that machine and teach them to use it. His days filled with learning to navigate language barriers, learning a new culture and new skills. He left the shop almost one year later, November 1972.

Steve’s adventures were not quite over yet. In the 70’s people were making a living by fixing up old Buicks and selling trips to tourists, with promises of exotic foreign adventures touring the middle east. Well, what would young Steve do in those days? Why he would try it! $50 took him through Istanbul, Tehran, Afghanistan, very quickly through Pakistan, and to New Delhi. Though he thoroughly enjoyed the trip, and he considered going to Australia next, Steve decided it was time to come home. So he went from Bombay to London, to the US and stayed in Idaho on the family farm for awhile. Steve enjoyed those farming days for the companionship and the change in scene. Steve is still involved in agriculture to this day, as a member and printer for the Biodynamic Association of Northern California.

Join us again for the next installment of “Friend Before Salesman” in which Steve sets up his print shop in Grass Valley.