Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Catalog Season!

If you look across the fields and farmsteads of Southeastern, IA you’ll see farmers readying themselves for a fall harvest, birds traveling down the Mississippi Flyway for warmer climates, and at Premier we are putting the finishing touches on our Fall Equipment Catalog.

Instead of farming our catalog out to be produced by others, we do everything but the printing in-house. This allows us to develop a more intimate knowledge of our catalog and our products.

The various departments at Premier have been painstakingly working on products, copy, and graphics for our fall catalog. We have completed the majority of the work. Now it is down to editing, proofing content and fine tuning graphics.

What does the catalog process involve?

New products to offer are determined through customer commentary and reviews as well as in-house brainstorming. If you have an idea for a product you’d like to see us offer, feel free to let us know. We also spend time throughout the year field-testing our products to ensure that they’re worth being in our catalog. You’ll see a few of our employees’ backyards featured in the catalog where the products were tested.

Once products are determined, our photographer Tharren takes photos of all the products, being used in the field and modeled in the studio. We have so many photos to choose from it is now becoming difficult to pick which of them to use.

The copywriters (Stan and Joe) fill all the white space that the Graphics department leaves in the catalog with descriptions, instructions, how-to’s and everything else that needs to be written up and added to the catalog.

After the graphics department (Jody, Kerrie, and Tharren) ensures everything is aesthetically pleasing, the catalog is sent out among the staff for editing. Print-outs of the catalog are passed among the sales team and several others to edit content. This includes, Gordon, Sara, Mark, Brenda, Kolby, Stan, Mandy, Stephanie and Joe.

After the first round of editing, the edits are made to the catalog and a new set of print outs are produced.

Finally, Stan’s sister, Vivian, has the final proof, after her eyes check for typos and grammatical errors, the catalog is sent off to the printing press. Expect to see our finished product in your mailbox around mid-October.

This process may sound fairly straightforward, but it does take a lot of effort from everyone to pull it off.

We're always looking for new ideas and topics to write about, so if there is anything you'd like to see or read about in the Premier Farm Diary, feel free to contact Joe Putnam at

photo: Jody, Joe, Kerrie and Steph hard at work analyzing catalog format