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Frank Has Some Choice Words

Published on June 28, 2019

Frank goes off on a mini rant about the latest buzzword in the industry. The industry trend toward diversification of printing services is evident—we print on more than paper. We need a better term that describes that trend.

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By Eric Vessels on Jun 28, 2019

I think maybe some are confusing two things: Printer’s businesses and a new trade show. While putting everything under one roof is indeed “convergence”, what is happening to the businesses of PSPs is diversification. Diversification isn’t really new. It’s been happening for decades across the industry and indeed is just a normal business philosophy. Anyone in business should always be looking to diversify and find new line items for revenue streams. Convergence among shows has also been happening for years.

What is new is SGIA/Napco’s effort with Printing United to bring disparate but tangential industry segments together in one show held at the same place and time. The argument that “convergence” among industry service provider offerings was driving this effort always did confuse me some. I’d argue the better term is diversification - or divergence. What SGIA is doing is clearly convergence, but it appears to be in response to divergent behavior among printers.

Maybe it’s just all semantics. What’s important is responding to industry trends and moving the industry forward. Our response here at WhatTheyThink has been to watch and listen to our member printers and continue to diversify our content offerings to help inform and engage them in a way that moves the industry forward. It’s our strategy behind content sections and magazine editions to offer coverage of different technologies printers can leverage to diversify their business offerings. We think it’s important to tailor information to different industry segments, but also expose everyone to everything because you never know in what way service providers will find ways to diversify their businesses!

Maybe the terms are mixed up, but it will be interesting to watch and see if the diversification happening will drive people to a “convergent” industry event.

As always, thanks to Frank for his unique ability to generate discussion about issues both important and trivial! Good rant!


By Michael Jahn on Jun 28, 2019

There used to be companies who only provided mail services, but they did not print. There were printers who did not perform these mail related services (PAVE, CASS,ect ) but used the mail services company list to print with.

We (SmartSoft) have watched as these two types of companies have converged. Mailers started printing, and printers purchased mail houses. Convergence / Diversification ? I say technology enables convergence of a workflow that allows companies to diversify.


By John Clifford on Jun 28, 2019

Loved your rant. Language is SUPPOSED to make communication more precise but as words appear to evolve language is becoming less concise. My main rant for years has been the total disregard of the "counting" words less, amount, number, and fewer. Fewer and number being for singular words, and less and amount being for plurals. You can't have "less people" or a smaller amount of people. Look at almost any newscast and you'll go crazy.



By Thayer Long on Jul 10, 2019



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