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Selling print is a commodity business. In search of higher margins, the mantra is to become a Solutions Provider, aka Marketing Services Provider. Unfortunately the terminology seems to take on many meanings and the message gets diluted.
Those new to wide-format printing—and even some veterans—often give short shrift to what happens to a print once it comes off press. In wide-format printing, however, the real added value is often in the finishing.
Much like Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs for humans, printers need to elevate their offerings above quality, service, and price in order to stay competitive.
It may be possible to run a printing company without a formal plan, but buying or selling a printing company will be very difficult to bring off successfully without the help of a written roadmap. An acquisition plan is a vital navigation aid that guides the process and certifies the desirability of the deal.
In this fourteenth article of the series, David looks at Founder, its production inkjet offerings and applications.
Charlie Corr of mimeo.com looks at some of the history surrounding the On Demand Show
Using advanced data management and cloud-based marketing tools, marketers can send trigger-based communications and create individual campaigns specifically designed to be sent to members of a defined target audience at precisely the right time. This article provides an overview of trigger-based marketing techniques and describes how small and medium-sized businesses are leveraging trigger-based marketing to improve their bottom lines.
With the Olympics starting in London, let’s turn our attention to Europe and specifically the future of print and paper in Europe.
Those of us used to traditional offset and digital printing rarely give the concept of white ink a second thought. After all, “white” is typically synonymous with the color of paper, so when we want something to be white, we design it with the absence of any color. (Tellingly, in Adobe InDesign, we select the color swatch labeled “Paper.”) There are situations, however, when—oxymoronic as it may seem—we need to specify the color white.
Last week the following significant announcement was made about the future of Heidelberg. Bernhard Schreier, CEO of Heidelberger Druckmaschinen AG (Heidelberg), will not be extending his management contract when it expires midyear 2013 and will be leaving the company at the end of 2012.
Steven Covey died recently. He helped people be more effective by helping them develop a set of Habits based on principles. Start with an end in mind and then create personal and interpersonal habits to help you get what you want effectively.
Senior Editor Cary Sherburne was recently the keynote speaker at ABIGRAF’s GEDIGI digital printing conference in São Paulo, Brazil, and spent time with Rodrigo Abreu, the holder of the International Master License for AlphaGraphics in Brazil. Read what Rodrigo has to say about printing in Brazil and some of the innovative actions he is taking to grow the business.
Author and businessman Stephen R. Covey recently passed away at the age of 79. This article highlights the key points from Covey’s 1989 bestseller entitled The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People and explains how these concepts remain relevant for today’s businesses.
The past five years have seen an increased discussion of, and emphasis on, the idea of “sustainability.” Sustainability can refer to many things, but one of the oft-discussed components of it is environmental sustainability. That is, what is the impact of a product or process on the environment, and what are the ways of reducing that impact?
Here Dr. Joe goes again, on another capacity rant. It's about two years since his last one, so we guess we should cut him some slack. This time he takes a slightly different look, or at least he says he did. You decide.
WhatTheyThink Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke with Dennis Amorosano, Sr. Director, Solutions Marketing & Business Support at Canon USA, to learn what Canon is doing in the Cloud/Mobility space in a wide-ranging discussion from the office and production into the Cloud.
Ricoh Production Print Solutions LLC recently completed a large-scale implementation at First Data (Atlanta, GA). This article covers Barb Pellow’s interview with First Data executives as they discuss how the company is using print technology in a cross-media world.
A major piece of news in recently has been the decision of HP not to exhibit at IPEX. Andy gives his opinion on why he thinks this decision was made.
The recovery continues to limp along, and then the Commerce Department says that May printing shipments were just incredibly good. Sure, they tease us a few weeks ago by yanking $600 million in shipments from the first quarter in their annual revision, and now it looks like someone may have snuck them back into May when they thought no one was looking. Dr. Joe explains it all, including a great way to get back to sleep when insomnia hits.
Digital Printing for Packaging is growing quickly; by 2016 it will be worth nearly $12.2 billion, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 20.6% during 2011–16. This equates to 37 billion A4 prints in 2011 and 75.9 billion in 2016. The growth is driven by the changing demands of packaging buyers – more varieties and pack sizes is fragmenting the market, leading to shorter runs that digital technology can produce economically
With its microprocessors, relays, sensors, and software, a modern printing press is a marvel at squeezing time and cost out of production runs. But, one maker of press cleaning accessories contends that these complex systems can still get a big helping hand in a key press function from a simple but strategically placed strip of durable plastic.
In this thirteenth article of the series, David looks at IMPIKA, its production inkjet offerings and applications.
WhatTheyThink recently joined other editors and analysts on a media tour of Canon’s production facility in Suzhou, China. The visit was part of a second leg of a trip that included a visit to the company’s Tokyo headquarters. The plant tour in Suzhou was an opportunity to see the Canon production system up close.
Doug Albregts has been President of Sharp Imaging and Information Company of America (SIICA) since November 2012. He talks with Senior Editor Cary Sherburne about why he chose Sharp and the company’s prospects.
WhatTheyThink recently joined other editors and analysts on a media tour to Canon’s headquarters in Tokyo, Japan. There, we were given a unique opportunity to hear from Canon Chairman & CEO Fujio Mitarai on his “5 Year Plan” strategy that focuses on reforming production and a profitable position in the markets they serve.
Erika Andersen’s book entitled Being Strategic: Plan for Success, Out-think Your Competitors, Stay Ahead of Change explains how to approach business in a strategic manner. This article highlights tips from the book and provides a real-world example of how Symcor is re-tooling its business to become more strategic.
HP surprised the printing industry when the news came out last week that the company had decided not to exhibit at Ipex 2014, which is moving from its long-time location in Birmingham to new digs in London. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke with HP’s Sumeer Chandra to get a better understanding of what was behind this decision, and also includes an official statement from IPEX.
Developing a business plan focused on the needs of your market is more critical now than ever to help you stay in business. Rapid advances in technology give you more options on how to grow and take your business forward. Equipment and service decisions need to be driven by your market needs – not your competition.
We’ve heard the vendor reports about drupa successes and seen the press releases rolling out. But there is nothing better than speaking directly to buyers. Think Patented bought big at drupa and Senior Editor Cary Sherburne spoke with Chairman and Managing Partner Niels Winther and CEO and Managing Partner, Ken McNerney to find out more.
Barb Pellow recently had the opportunity to interview Christa Carone, Chief Marketing Officer at Xerox. This article offers highlights from the interview, including key challenges that service providers face and how to address these challenges head-on.
While drupa isn’t technically a packaging show, there were many packaging solutions on display and a great deal of interest in the segment on the part of visitors. Senior Editor Cary Sherburne reviews a few of the new development she came across as she traversed the many halls in Messe Dusseldorf during her 12 days of drupa …
Software is the tool to remain relevant and integrated with the new communication methods. The print industry’s future will depend on embracing software like we did manufacturing – creating new reasons to print and optimizing and integrating existing applications.
The industry's hackles have been raised by Toshiba's No-Print Day, and it's ironic that the company picks a date with some historical importance for print to hold the event. Toshiba's thinking needs to be confronted, but engagement with their audiences is a more important action for our associations and our businesses.
The second Postal Vision conference drew 150 attendees to Washington DC’s L’Enfant Plaza Hotel. This was two Metro stops from the real decision makers, i.e., Congress and the United States Postal Service. No one from Congress could squeeze it in but USPS’ new Digital Solutions President and Strategic Planning Manager were in attendance as well as representatives of the two primary Postal Unions for the two-day duration.
We often get some rather stupid approaches by companies trying to put out marketing messages to enhance their position in the eyes of potential consumers. Sometimes these approaches show just how stupid marketing people can be and in fact show just how little they know of the real situation in the market.
Celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, NBS started out as a data entry service provider. This article explores how the company transformed itself into a digital printing and mailing services expert by positioning for future growth.
Some think that general commercial printing companies aren’t worthy targets for acquisition by other printing firms. That’s a major misperception, say the M&A experts of NDP.
Economic conditions are being twisted and distorted by the long-held biases of the business press. The charged political climate of an election year fans passions that magnify momentary small and nearly meaningless changes in economic data into cataclysms or triumphs. You have to step back to see what's really happening, or not happening. Small businesses can't choose economic conditions, but they can choose their means of navigation.
This time, instead of a long-form review of product announcements at drupa 2012, here are the highlights in a format that many of us are getting accustomed to: Tweetable bursts of 140 characters or less.
We hear a lot about companies transforming themselves into marketing services organizations, but IWCO Direct provides a great model for success. This article provides a brief overview of IWCO Direct’s history and explains how the company is taking an integrated approach to truly transform itself.
In my last article, I covered what I felt were the key trends in digital printing at drupa. In this article I want to look at some of the trends and try to put them into context in the market.
In this twelfth article of the series, David looks at MGI, its production inkjet offerings and applications.
Within the great majority of companies today, the practice of sales as a business discipline has become at best ineffective - and in many cases flat-out obsolete.
Coming off of a press conference extravaganza at drupa, WhatTheyThink’s Senior Editor Cary Sherburne challenges Graph Expo exhibitors to change the press conference game. (And feature more customers in their booths!)
Earlier in 2012, Mike Moniteiro published a book entitled Design is a Job. Although this book is targeted toward the design community, its lessons also resonate with organizations that are attempting to add marketing services to their offerings. In this article, Barb Pellow describes how service-oriented businesses can leverage the principles in this book to become marketing service providers.
With drupa behind us, Senior Editor Cary Sherburne takes a retrospective look at this landmark drupa and dubs it the “Hybrid drupa.” What does she mean by that? It’s more than print engines! Read on …
Inkjet printing will grow from a $33.4 billion market in 2011 to $67.3 billion in 2017, according to new research from Smithers Pira. Dr. Sean Smyth, consultant at Smithers Pira, provides an overview of the latest trends in inkjet printing, including developments from drupa.
Organizations have reduced staff due to a drop in sales and the recession. How is purchasing structured in your organization? Now is the time to review your structure, personnel and process for purchasing in your organization and set your objectives.
With the technologies now available, book manufacturers can respond to critical market trends and support the increased need for digital book manufacturing. This article provides a brief overview of the changes that are occurring in the book printing/publishing market and explores how companies like Webcom are facilitating these changes.
Looking back over what appears to be a very successful drupa one can see all the new announcements in both analog and digital printing and hopefully can put them into context.