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Recent Commentary & Analysis

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Displaying 1551-1600 of thousands of articles

 

The Flexible Packaging Sector, excerpts from 2012 PRIMIR Research

To help us introduce the various packaging sectors to the growing WhatTheyThink Labels & Packaging readership we asked PRIMIR if we could pull excerpts from their 2012 study that Karstedt Partners was commissioned to write titled Packaging: Evaluation of Vertical Markets & Key Applications.


Definitions Shift and Understandings Change as “Printing” Takes On a Third Dimension

Although it may be difficult for traditionalists to imagine, “printing” can be done in more dimensions than two. The Inside Printing 3D Conference and Expo made clear why this high-touch manufacturing process is gaining increased attention both as an emerging technology and as an investment opportunity.


Efficiency & Innovation in Wide-Format

I recently had the chance to attend PIA’s annual Continuous Improvement Conference, and among the many kernels of information I left Indianapolis with was the concept that innovation and efficiency go hand-in-hand.


Personalization Goes Mainstream (Premium Content)

To keep their products and services top-of-mind, marketers must offer highly personalized communications that are relevant to each recipient and communicated via the right channel. Personalization has finally gone mainstream, and marketers must consider individual needs and preferences to drive consumers to take action.


Samsung Partners with Blurb for Unique Native Photo Printing App

Last month, Blurb announced a global partnership with Samsung for auto-creating photo books and magazines on the company’s new GALAXY S 4 smartphone, available today from T-Mobile and later this week from other carriers. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke with Blurb SVP Bruce Watermann who shared details about the app and his thoughts about mobile and print in general.


The Role of the CEO When Transforming Your Business (Premium Content)

The challenges that we face when transforming a business are substantial and require the involvement of the entire organization. Each member of the team plays a different role but without the involvement of the CEO the chances of success are drastically reduced. In many situations there are multiple strategies in play; while the legacy business must be maintained and expanded the transition team must define and create the future. Under these circumstances, the CEO’s role must be carefully examined and defined.


Transforming and Automating Workflows: Production Infrastructures –DFEs: The State of the Market

In this article, David continues the infrastructure discussion, now focusing on the current state of the DFE (Digital Front End, aka RIPs) in the market, covering Digital Print DFEs as well as CTP DFEs, and the beginning of the plant production workflow. All of this done with an eye toward building a flexible platform upon which to grow.


The Goal Revisited (Premium Content)

The Goal is a book written in the 1980's. It does not get as much attention as it did a number of years ago. However, visiting older ideas can sometimes stimulate new thinking.


Interview with Ben Markens, President of Paperboard Packaging Council (PPC)

For the past 84 years, the Paperboard Packaging Council (PPC) has been the leading industry association serving suppliers and converters of all forms of paperboard packaging. We spoke with Ben Markens, President of PPC, about the current state of the folding carton industry and the opportunities and challenges faced by its members.


First Edge Solutions: Understanding Changing Communication Dynamics (Premium Content)

Graphic communications service providers of all sizes need to “future-proof” their businesses in terms of services, solutions, and data capabilities to deliver relevant information and optimize customer service. This article discusses how First Edge Solutions has expanded its multi-channel communications to stay ahead of the competition.


Remembering Efi Arazi

WhatTheyThink was saddened to learn of the passing of innovator and entrepreneur Efi Arazi on Sunday. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke with EFI CEO Guy Gecht and Landa Nanographics CEO Benny Landa who share their thoughts about Arazi’s contributions to the industry and the world, and she invites our readers to chime in with their own remembrances and thoughts about this great man.


Upping the Ante at Konica Minolta (Premium Content)

At Graph Expo, we reported on some interesting software additions to the Konica Minolta family of products. WhatTheyThink’s Senior Editor Cary Sherburne followed up with Gavin Jordan-Smith, Vice President for Solutions and Production Planning, to see what else is new at the company.


Inkjet International Days

On March 19th Océ (part of the Canon Group) hosted an International Inkjet Days event at its site in Poing Germany (just east of Munich). Océ invited a group of industry analysts to see the latest enhancements to its impressive inkjet product portfolio and it offered educational sessions on inkjet technology, document security and color perception.


New GMC CEO Henri Dura Sees Bright Future, Expansion for Company (Premium Content)

Following the acquisition of GMC Software Technology by Neopost last summer, long-time Chairman and CEO Dr. René Müller has ceded the CEO position to Henri Dura, retaining the position of President of the Board for the time being. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke with Dura to learn more about his background, the status of the integration process post-acquisition, and his strategic view of the future.


QuantumDigital: Making Direct Mail Simple and Fast (Premium Content)

SMBs have a wide range of communication needs, including corporate identity, marketing collateral, direct marketing, point-of-sales materials, transactional documents, and publications. This article cites recent InfoTrends research to uncover the priorities and challenges for SMBs, and also discusses how QuantumDigital can make a difference for small businesses.


Interview with Jay Willie of the Independent Carton Group

I caught up with Jay Willie, Executive Director of the Independent Carton Group (ICG) just before he struck out for one of the groups quarterly meetings. The ICG has an interesting business model and long history.


AIP Restructures Presstek, An Interview with New CEO David Savage

In October of 2012, Presstek announced the completion of its sale to American Industrial Partners Capital Fund, taking the company private. WhatTheyThink has learned that the company is in the process of undergoing a significant restructuring. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke with David Savage, Presstek’s new CEO, to get the details.


With DDS, Graphics Professionals Sink Their Teeth Into Electronic Signage

The Las Vegas Strip is home to many things that you’d be hard-pressed find anywhere else—and, generally, that’s a good thing.


Magazine Publishers Seeing Real Results from Digital Issues (Premium Content)

Senior Editor has been having ongoing conversations with Adobe’s Lynly Schambers-Lenox, Group Product Marketing Manager, Digital Publishing, about the impact adoption of digital publishing is having on magazinepublishers, especially for users of Adobe’s Digital Publishing Suite. In this article, Schambers-Lenox shares new data that is beginning to show real results in revenue, advertising and subscribership for publishers.


Business-to-Business Commerce aka Web-to-Print (Premium Content)

Business-to-business commerce may not be getting the headlines in the print industry, yet across all industries in the US it’s nearly twice the size of the business-to-consumer market. It’s vital that printers understand the B2B opportunity and not confuse it with jumping into a price war with retailers online.


Canon Poing Customer Experience Center Offers World-Class Experience for Customers/Journalists

Last month, WhatTheyThink’s Senior Editor Cary Sherburne joined a group of journalists, industry analysts and customers for a visit to Canon’s Poing Customer Experience Center located on the outskirts of Munich, Germany.


The Role of the Sales Leader

The role of the Sales Leader is to manage your system and coach your people. They must provide Structure, Support and Accountability for your sales program and as you continue your journey towards re-inventing your business, this function will take on much greater significance. Adhering to unsuccessful, past practices will only hold back your efforts as you continue to recruit, hire and develop your next generation sales team.


Augmented Reality: Practical Applications in Today’s Market (Premium Content)

Recent technological investments suggests that technology leaders are expecting augmented reality (AR) to play a much larger role in how consumers access various types of content. This article provides just a few AR examples that have recently hit the headlines.


Wide-Format Inkjet Printing: A Transition to Higher Utilization and Productivity

IT Strategies has just completed its 19th wide-format graphics inkjet forecast, wrapping up nearly two decades’ worth of experience into a single large Excel spreadsheet. The trends year-over-year aren’t surprising. Growth continues.


Transforming and Automating Workflows: Production Infrastructures – The evolution of the DFE

David continues the discussion, now focusing on the production infrastructure by looking at the role of the DFE (Digital Front End, aka RIP), and how that has changed as a result of digital press technology and the changing demands of the marketplace. In keeping with the series theme, he looks at it with an eye toward building a flexible platform upon which to grow.


We Have A Pope—and His Apostle to the Printers

In one of his first official acts since his election as pontiff, Pope Francis has unveiled a radically new strategy for proselytizing to the world: he’ll carry on the work of St. Peter through an international network of printing companies he intends the Church to acquire.


Is Strategy Necessary?

There has been much chaos and confusion in our industry in the past two decades. According to every credible source, collective industry sales are declining. Offset printing, which rode a 60 year wave of process dominance, has been declining since 2007. Digital print sales, as well as a variety of ancillary services, are growing but not fast enough to stem the tide of total industry revenue decline.


One-to-One: Meeting Consumer Expectations and Delivering Marketing Results (Premium Content)

All customers are not alike; they have different demographic profiles, income levels, business requirements, and lifestyle choices. Marketers understand that they cannot ignore these differences, and they are creating customer communications that position their products and services to cater to individual preferences and characteristics. This article leverages recent research that highlights the importance of personalized messaging.


The Countdown to the International Sign Expo Continues

We have been previewing ISA’s International Sign Expo 2013. A fortnight ago, we looked at the educational opportunities to be had, and this week we will look at but the merest handful of the offerings on the show floor.


Integrating Impika: A Talk with Xerox’s Andrew Copley

Although the ink is barely dry on the deal that has made Impika a unit of Xerox, the acquirer believes that bringing its target into the fold will give it the major-player status in inkjet that it has been seeking.


The Folding Carton Sector, excerpts from 2012 PRIMIR Research

To help us introduce the various packaging sectors we asked PRIMIR if we could pull excerpts from their 2012 study that Karstedt Partners was commissioned to write titled Packaging: Evaluation of Vertical Markets & Key Applications.


Label and Packaging Security: Brand Protection Tools in Printing and Packaging

Billions of dollars a year are on the line for companies as they seek ways to ensure that the products sold with their logos and branding are authorized and authentic. The proliferation of counterfeiting requires brand owners and their converter/printer partners to work together to create a multi-layered  protection plan so that their packaging and labels protect their brands and deter those trying to profit at their (and their reputation’s) expense.


Strategies for Niche Players

In my last article I discussed the Rule of Three and how it appears to be playing out in the print industry. This article will review those strategies.


Dscoop Executive Director Eric Hawkinson to Depart

In a move that is likely to cause a few ripples, Eric Hawkinson, who has been Executive Director of Dscoop, HP Indigo’s user group, will be departing to join Canon Solutions America, working for VP of Marketing Francis McMahon as Director of Marketing. Cary Sherburne speaks with several of the principals about this surprising move.


Loyalty Matters… And It’s Time to Make it Work! (Premium Content)

Loyalty programs have always been about treating your best customers better, but today’s marketers want to court their customers, engage them, and track their behaviors. This article discusses some of today’s techniques for connecting with customers and keeping them engaged.


Wide-format Inkjet: Many Communities, One Process

Wide-format inkjet technology has become the “go to” technology for a number of traditional and non-traditional printing segments The purpose of this article is to define the differences between these segments, in general terms.


Interview with Steve Young of AICC

We recently had the opportunity to catch up with Steve Young, President of AICC, and asked him to share his thoughts around the mission of AICC, the role of AICC, and the opportunities and challenges facing their members.


Building Your Next Generation Sales Team

The behavioral competencies and skills that we must look for in the next generation sales professional are quite different from what we have focused on in the past. The ability to engage clients in dialogue to uncover and define challenges is of utmost importance. It is also important that sales professionals be great listeners; listening 80% of the time. However, as buyers we usually don’t experience that behavior. So what can we do to change that dynamic? I believe we can dramatically improve our success in selecting the right people as well as coaching those with the necessary behavioral competencies to become great engagers.


New X-Rite Pantone President Talks About Danaher, X-Rite Pantone Future Prospects (Premium Content)

Following Tom Vacchiano’s departure as President of X-Rite Pantone, WhatTheyThink’s Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke with his successor, long-time Danaher veteran Ron Voigt, in this exclusive interview to learn more about Danaher business strategies and the future prospects of X-Rite Pantone under the Danaher banner.


Once you have built the trust and credibility, these deals are worth a lot, but it takes time to get there. (Premium Content)

There are many relationships in business today. One that is often not given enough weight is your vendor relationship. In the past, this relationship could be adversarial. Today, cooperation is needed more than ever. Looking at how you can get more out of your vendor relations can have a large positive effect on your bottom line.


Interview with Kristi Ledbetter of TAPPI

We recently had the opportunity to catch-up with Kristi Ledbetter, the Converting Division Manager for Tappi, and had the opportunity to get an update on what is happening at Tappi.


Think Patented: Expanding Value-Added Services through Acquisitions (Premium Content)

Think Patented has embarked on a transition strategy to improve its competitive edge in today’s turbulent market. The company is broadening the set of production tools that it uses, embracing value-added services, and refocusing itself on becoming a marketing services provider. This article provides an overview of Think Patented’s growth strategy, which includes a shift to value-added services as well as strategic acquisitions.


Countdown to the International Sign Expo

The International Sign Expo, coming up April 3–6 will feature more than 500 exhibitors, more than 40 educational sessions, and ample networking opportunities, all related to the “on-premise” signage industry.


What Job Does Web-to-Print Do for Your Customers? (Premium Content)

Web-to-print is a product that should do a “job” for you and/or your customers. When you look at technology purchases through the lens of “jobs” you focus on what’s really important.


The Rule of Three

After What They Think published my article Survival of the Small and Mid-sized Printing Company in Today’s Chaotic Environment, Scott Johnson commented with some nice words and the question: Had I read the book The Rule of Three: Surviving and Thriving in Competitive Markets? I had not read it but out of curiosity I found it, bought it and read it.


Kodak’s Loss; Three Leaf Insights’ Gain (Premium Content)

With pieces of Kodak being lopped off as it works to emerge from bankruptcy proceedings, some are taking root as new businesses. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne interviewed one of the founders of Three Leaf Insights, born out of the ashes of Kodak’s MarketMover Managed Campaign Services, as well as a print service provider and an end customer, to offer a view of how these services are likely to evolve after being shed by Kodak.


The Corrugated Packaging Sector, excerpts from PRIMIR Research

For the next few weeks we will be looking at the corrugated sector of packaging, which accounts for approximately $85 Billion in shipments globally and $24 Billion in North America.


The “New Kid” on the Block - CHINAPRINT

Having just returned from Beijing where I attended the International Media Week, patterned after the drupa format, I can tell you that the Chinese are no longer the student and could be considered the teacher.


What's the Good Word in Mergers and Acquisitions? Most of the Time, Ssshhh!

If silence is golden in most of the affairs of life, in M&A transactions, it’s pure platinum. Nothing assures a better outcome for a deal—or yields a worse one if it’s violated—than maintaining a policy of tight information control while negotiations are under way.


Universal Wilde: Success Starts with a Vision (Premium Content)

Selling a product or service requires a vision. A vision is a picture of the future that we seek to create, described in the present tense, as if it were happening now. It shows where we want to go, and what we will be like when we get there. This article provides a brief profile of Universal Wilde, which has developed a vision for its business and is using this vision to power its growth.


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