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Todd Kalagher of Finlay Printing discusses the importance of attending Dscoop

Published on May 31, 2012

Cary Sherburne speaks with Todd Kalagher of Finlay Printing at Dscoop 7 about the importance of attending the event and the launch of "Book of Possibilities" component of their Marketing to Win program.

Cary Sherburne:  Hi, I’m Cary Sherburne, Senior Editor at WhatTheyThink.com, and I’m her with Todd Kalagher, who is President of Finlay in Connecticut.  Welcome.  

Todd Kalagher:  Hi, Cary.  How are you?  

Cary Sherburne: Good.  We’re here at Dscoop 7 in the nation’s capital.  

Todd Kalagher:  It’s wonderful.  

Cary Sherburne: And this is your seventh Dscoop.  

Todd Kalagher:  It is, yep.  

Cary Sherburne: That’s amazing.  And so, tell me how you – why you come to all these?  Why is it important to you?  

Todd Kalagher:  Well, I think the initial reason we all do this is, one, is the sharing and camaraderie in the industry.  I think it’s a highly sophisticated group of people.  I think we’re all friends at a level.  I think people are willing to walk up and give you ideas for your own business and we’re certainly willing to do that.  But I think there’s a lot of leveraging going on.  

This year it’s a very mature crowd.  It is intense and focused, everybody’s looking for the next thing, you know, based on not only the topic of where the industry is going, but I think for a lot of things, where HP is going.  

Cary Sherburne:  Yeah.  

Todd Kalagher:  And they rolled out a pretty wide variety of new products and we’re all trying to get our head around it.  So it’s been pretty interesting.  

Cary Sherburne:  One nice thing about most of those new products is that at least they’re backward compatible to, you know, to what you have today.  

Todd Kalagher:  Yes, absolutely.  And I think . . . 

Cary Sherburne:  They protect your investment.  

Todd Kalagher:  And they didn’t step over anybody.  And I think that was one of the things that they really thought about the products and how they’re going to get launched and how we’re going to use them in the field.  

Cary Sherburne:  Yeah.  So one of the problems that we still have, and it’s amazing to me after all these years we’ve been doing digital, but you know, we were talking about going back to ’95, and is the gap between, you know what we know in the printing industry, the possibilities are versus the design community and the brand owners understand.  So, Dscoop launched its Book of Possibilities here at the event.  

Todd Kalagher:  They did.  Well one of the thing that we’ve always tried to encourage the entire membership, and we’re all included in that, is to really take advantage of what we do every day.  And I think one of the things is that we’re not a marketing industry by nature because it’s always we’re the, you know, the shoemaker’s kids.  

Cary Sherburne:  Shoemaker’s kids, yeah.  

Todd Kalagher:  And it’s – sometimes it’s hard.  But I think what we were able to do and capture in the new program, Marketing to Win, is really develop a series of not only newsletters and a thought process of how to educate along with a pretty intense guide called, The Book of Possibilities.  And what that really includes is all the technologies from HP, but also, how to use it.  So we’re putting into people’s hand, exactly how to position, how to think about it, how do you really work with brand and designers.  And for some part of the membership, that’s an uncomfortable moment.  For us, it’s always been kind of the meat and potatoes of what we do and we think that’s more exciting the riskier we get.  But that’s where I think a lot of the industry needs to kind of look and to just kind of push themselves out there on the fringe.  

Cary Sherburne:  You know that the day before Dscoop started, they held the D.C. conference . . . 

Todd Kalagher:  Yes.  

Cary Sherburne:  Which was for designers and as I understand it, they were pretty blown away by what they saw.  

Todd Kalagher:  They were.  I was able to attend in part of a session and I think their thought process was, it’s hard for me to understand what's really, that’s digital.  When we’ve been doing it for so long, I think it’s our, I think it’s our guiding force at this point to really push people to look at it.  And then, you know, but is it digital or is it just a great delivery mechanism now?    The quality is there, it’s not a question of do I like it anymore, it’s a question of how fast can I get it and where?  

Cary Sherburne:  Yeah.  And you know, it’s almost like, you know, they don’t really care what technology it’s done on, I mean, and so it’s almost like, you know, hey, I want to tell you about digital printing as a non-starter, but hey, I’d like to tell you how, you know, I can reduce your time to market by 50 percent.  That’s a pretty powerful statement.  

Todd Kalagher:  It is.  And I think what we’re seeing too in the transition, you know, is not so much sheet fed to digital, it’s much more is it – where the application takes in.  When we’re doing books that are coffee table books and counts are 25, 50, there’s still a tremendous amount of prepress there.  The best part of the job is still there for us and I think people have to look at it a little bit differently.  Not the length of the run, it’s really the value of the job.  And there’s a whole new way of looking at this.  

Cary Sherburne: Yeah.  So, you think you’ll be able to use this program?  

Todd Kalagher:  Oh we signed up, and we’re very excited about being able to use the book, take it out, talk to our design customers and kind of get their heads spinning a little bit, ‘cause then they’re going to come back to us and say, how do we do this?  

Cary Sherburne:  Yeah, and you know what?  They’re probably going to come back with things that you never even dreamed of.  

Todd Kalagher:  I’m hoping they do.  

Cary Sherburne:  That’ll be great.  

Todd Kalagher:  Absolutely.  

Cary Sherburne:  Thanks for sharing with us.  

Todd Kalagher:  Thank you.  

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