Print Guidelines

Print Guidelines

The best print publications engage their desired audience, conveying important information which can spark action. It takes energy, knowledge, time and money to turn a message into an effective print publication. Below are a few steps to follow that will allow you to plan, create and publish your NMSU document on schedule and with less stress. Marketing Services can help you in any of these areas and more.

Publications cost money, whether you make them yourself or hire someone. An important first step is to create a budget; it will influence the amount of time and other resources available to you. Budget for writing and editing, photography, design and printing. If you plan to mail your piece, you should also factor in that cost.
It takes time to produce quality publications. Make a production schedule and include time for research, writing, editing, photography, proofreading, designing and printing. If you are mailing your piece, allow time for that as well. Note: Commercial printers usually require 2-3 weeks to print and deliver a project.

  • Choose the right kind of publication for your needs.
  • Engage the appropriate resources necessary for your project.
  • Use correct logo, tagline, fonts and color palette.
  • Save time by using templates.
  • Use concise text and engaging, branded images.
  • When balancing text and images, remember the 80/20 rule: To capture and hold the reader’s attention, use a ratio of 80 percent imagery to 20 percent copy.
  • Use high-resolution images (at least 300 dpi). Note: Web images are not high resolution and are inadequate for documents intended for printing.

NMSU has pricing agreements with printing and copying vendors — regional companies with a long history of producing an array of fine products with the NMSU brand and providing great service. Vendors have been vetted through the NMSU RFP process and have been chosen based on several factors including competitive pricing and product quality. NMSU departments can work directly with the contracted vendors for all printing and copying needs, or contact Marketing and Communications for assistance.

It is highly recommended that work submitted to commercial printers is created using Adobe InDesign software. Work produced in Microsoft Publisher and/or Microsoft Word is acceptable but the files must be converted to PDF format prior to submission (this ensures that your file will be printed as you prepared it). Newer versions of Microsoft Office allow you to easily save your files in PDF format. Go to File and then Save As. For older applications, there are PDF file converters available for download.

The vendors for printing and copying services are listed below and information about all contracted vendors is posted on the NMSU Purchasing webpage.

Stationery: letterhead, envelopes, note cards, notepads, labels and business cards produced from official templates supplied by NMSU
Printing and Copier Services

Copy and Printing Services
(No stationery or business card orders)

Banners, signs, large format posters, nameplates, and other signage are available from the Sign Shop on campus, it is a great resource.

  • NMSU Sign Shop
    Request quotes for all copy and printing projects
    Tina Patton

Check out the Downloads & Templates section for access to assets which will help you in creating university-related promotional materials.

Before you get started, feel free to contact NMSU Marketing Services. NMSU Marketing Services develops and produces promotional material for print and digital media. Our staff provides consultation on NMSU brand application guidelines and standards, as well as tools, resources and branded templates. Whatever level of assistance you need, we can give — whether that means working together to create an award-winning piece from scratch or just answering a few questions about NMSU's contracted vendors for printing and copying.

For more information, email or call 646-7557. Also available are workshops to discuss the AES/CES production process. For these workshops, email or call 646-1174.

Marketing Services’ PDF tutorials and tips will help you create the best possible publication, one that builds on the valuable reputation of the university via a unified look instantly recognizable as NMSU. Use the links below to guide you. Need additional help? Contact Marketing Services at

ACES authors

AES/CES Publishing Tips

Branded Downloads and Print Templates

Color Reproduction for Printing

Conference Poster Development


Essential Graphics/Design Concepts for Non-Designers

Photography Tips