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Success Story: Vance Publishing

The cost effective BookFWD™ program leaves overseas production a thing of the past

Since 1937, Vance Publishing has been a recognized leader in business information and communications. They strive to create distinguishable and purposeful content and content-rich environments that serve specialized audiences and individual marketers/communicators.

Custom-built products reaching select audiences, inside and across media platforms, complement the Vance core products of leading business-to-business print publications, websites, e-publications, mobile apps, and data software.

 The challenge: the cost of ‘cost effective’

Vance Publishing once relied on overseas printers to produce their directories in the tens of thousands, distributing large quantities of books for free and relying on advertising for their profits.

The range of titles they produced was limited in order to manufacture large, cost effective print runs. Over time, the realities of excess inventory and restricted versatility drove Vance to seek new ways to revitalize their business model.


“The BookFWD™ business model was very compelling in our decision to move printing back from China and save on cost. At the same time, I was blown away by the quality of printing we witnessed with Webcom’s inkjet web press.”

Greenbooks Publications

The solution

Break free of restrictive printing models 

  • In 2011, when digital inkjet technology, in the form of Webcom’s HP T300, entered the scene, Vance made the decision to move towards greater customization, targeting their customers’ specific interests in smaller sub-markets to make each directory more tailored towards its intended audience.
  • Supported in this endeavor by Webcom’s BookFWD™ program, designed to allow publishers to reduce their run sizes without compromising quality or profit, and by WEBview, the online complement to Webcom’s printing model, Vance completely overhauled their approach.

Its impact

Customized for the end-user

  • Subscribers and advertisers alike responded with enthusiasm to Vance’s more targeted approach. Advertisers were happier because they were able to isolate a market with greater precision, and subscribers were happier because they were receiving content that was more targeted and relevant. Vance even won back advertising that had been pulled in previous years, having proven their commitment to adaptability and open-mindedness in the face of a changing market. Vance embraced the low-cost, short run BookFWD™ program, and their end-users embraced the change.
  • Vance printed and distributed 40 custom titles, averaging between 50 and 100 copies per title. They also developed 10 online WEBview titles – at 43% less cost than their more limited business model of the year before in which they printed 5,000 copies each of just four titles.

Put our experience to work

  • Capabilities to support a whole title’s lifecycle

    Whether you need a few copies or a few thousands, we can deliver a balanced mix of digital inkjet and offset print.

  • Product customization

    We support niche markets with responsive turnaround and quick access to local distribution.

  • Diverse paper options

    Print on a wide range of paper types with custom finishes (from 20lb to 80lb).

  • Complete flexibility

    Advance reader copies, front and backlist reprints, and short and long runs when you need them.

  • Fulfillment & distribution

    Get your books to market quickly and dependably with direct shipment to your customers.

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