Can you suggest any cost savings? Many times your printer can suggest an alternative paper stock or layout that can save big money without jeopardizing the integrity of your piece.
For example, we recently had a client who wanted their product and services brochure printed on ivory paper. This ivory paper stock is only sold in quantities of 1000 sheets. This particular job called for 1200 sheets which meant the client was going to have to purchase 2000 sheets (800 of which would not be used). We were able to use a white colored paper that was a fraction of the cost AND sold in any quantity for the project and print a ivory flood coat of ink on the stock that perfectly matched the stock the client originally wanted. Making this simple stock change saved over $400 for the client
What type of file do you need? How should I submit my artwork?
Providing your printer with art in the format they prefer is very important for all involved. Supplying "print ready" art means your end product will be as you expect it. If your printing company needs to manipulate or convert your files, items can shift, color can change, etc AND many printing companies will charge you file alteration fees.
Here is a link to a YouTube video describing the type of files you need to supply for printed materials.
What past experiences have you had with this type of project?
Since your commercial printer has had lots of experience on projects that may be similar to yours (or hopefully they do), they are the best source for information on time frame, issues, and response. Asking about issues with the product is always a key question. Your printer will be able to tell you if a particular design/layout tends to get damaged in the mail or if a particular type of fold will quickly wear out from excessive use (like on a pocket folder). Your commercial printing partner should also be able to tell you the average ROI on marketing materials and may be able to suggest a more effective way to get your message to your audience.