WhatTheyThink

Commentary & Analysis

Displaying 1301-1400 of thousands of articles

PIA's Color Conference Is the Go-to to Increase Color Knowledge

PIA’s Color Conference grew attendance by about 30% compared to 2017, with 25% of attendees representing the brand/design community. For anyone with a color-critical role, this is an excellent venue to increase color knowledge, network with peers, and have in-depth in-person conversations with conference sponsors about solutions that can assist with specific challenges.

Economy Growing, Big and Small; Who Owns Our Businesses?

Dr. Joe has a special message: he was wrong 15 years ago, and it worked out fine. The economy is showing improvement, and some reluctant data series are starting to be break their recession levels. Government shutdown? That won't stop them from collecting taxes! Many of the economic indicators show a strong Q4-2017 GDP report is in the offing - but the shutdown may prevent that data release. Dr. Joe warns of a data issues ahead - if small business booms, it may not be recognized right away. But there's one difference in big and small that's showing up right now in printing profits data.

You Might Be Ready for the Cloud If...(Part 4)

Are you ready for a cloud migration? Here is the fourth and final post in a four-part series on "cloud readiness" criteria put together by experts.

In the Mail: January 2018 - What You Need to Know About Postal Issues

The USPS racks up improvements in on-time performance and cost coverage…22 Marketing Mail workshare discount passthroughs exceed 100%…Industry groups craft postal strategic plan.

2018: A Focus on Technology

In the year ahead, changing customer demands, ongoing technological shifts, more intense market competition, and ever-changing communication trends will require print providers to make innovation a top priority. This article (the first in a three-part series) highlights key technology trends expected to have significant impact on print providers’ prospects for growth in 2018.

The Role of a Product Owner in Print Software

Every industry has different roles, in the software industry there is a role called the “Product Owner” also referred to as the “Product Manager”. First, I’ll explain this unique role in the software industry; then I’ll make a case that as print continues to evolve and become more digitally friendly and software dependent printers are going to have to have this role in their organizations.

PDF For Packaging: Facilitating Process Automation

The PDF format is gaining acceptance in packaging production. As a result, prepress and converting companies are finding new ways to automate and optimize their processes.

Two Sides Video Ties Sustainable Forestry to Real People

In this industry, we like to talk about the value of paper to connect with audiences and engage them in a way that digital content does not. What we don’t spend as much time talking about is how consuming forest-based products like paper benefits real people, real families in our communities, and actually improves the environment, too.

Salesforce.com Releases Fourth Annual “State of Marketing”

This post provides five critical takeaways from Salesforce.com’s “Fourth Annual State of Marketing” report that paint a very different picture of the marketing landscape than a few years ago. MSPs need to be prepared for significant retooling.

Amazon and On-Demand Clothing Manufacturing

Amazon’s patenting of an on-demand clothing manufacturing warehouse points to a future of on-demand mass customization of fashion.

You Might Be Ready for the Cloud If . . . (Part 3)

Are you ready for a cloud migration? Here is the third in a four-part series of posts on criteria put together by experts.

New Strategy for Xeikon Café Exhibition & Conference Announced

Details for the 2018 edition of Xeikon Café Exhibition & Conference, the fourth such event held in Belgium, are becoming available,;and there are exciting changes planned. We spoke with Xeikon Corporate Communications Manager Danny Mertens to get more details. Read more.

It’s Time to Evaluate Your Production Workflow Platform

Most of today’s printers realize that software plays a critical role in keeping operational costs down and remaining competitive. This article explores how software vendors can help PSPs with their workflow bottlenecks so they can better prepare for the future as we move into another new year.

Print Business Differentiation

What makes your print business unique? This is a question every print business should ponder over the new year. In 2018 how will you guide your company to create differentiation? Will it be based on the past or the reality of our shared future?

This Point Forward: A Look Ahead at 2018

Personal voice assistants and the Internet of Things, wide-format graphics and specialty printing—what are some of the new (and old!) technologies to which we should pay attention and how will they affect us in 2018?

Will the Real Crane Please Stand Up? – December 2017 M&A Activity

Crane Currency acquired; IWCO teams up with ModusLink Global Solutions; OSG active in transactional segment; Fort Dearborn acquires NCL; and more…

Fed By Threads Makes Socially Responsible, Environmentally Sustainable Apparel, “From Dirt to Shirt”

Want a vision of the future of the world of digital textiles? Skya Nelson of Fed By Threads has a unique perspective on the market, and is already implementing much of it with the company’s “dirt to shirt” approach to socially responsible, environmentally sustainable apparel.

Heating Up: Retargeting with Direct Mail

Retargeting isn’t just for digital campaigns anymore. Companies are coming up with innovative solutions for retargeting lost website customers with snail mail, as well.

In the Mail: December 2017

Mixed news on the U.S. Postal Service revenue front… annual rate increases in the offing? …marketing mail program delayed…say goodbye to IMb.

Dr. Joe: A Potpourri of Workers, Taxes, Profits, Rates, Digits, and More

The fifteenth year of Dr. Joe at WhatTheyThink comes to a close, and he’s got a lot of topics (and some charts, of course) to get off his mind. Tax reform, recruitment, hours online, profits, consolidation...you name it, it’s probably mentioned in this year’s final column. Oh, and we forgot Bitcoin...that’s here too.

2017: A Look In the Rear-View Mirror

More industry consolidation in response to decreased demand. Yet, encouraging business conditions, and challenges with managing productivity. Meanwhile, inkjet continues to conquer the world and new print product and business opportunities emerge in strange new places. Let’s take a look back at the year that was.

From 3D to 2D: An Interesting Journey

There has been a lot of hype over the last few years about 3D printing, or additive manufacturing, being the next big thing in the print-related world. We recently learned that EFI hired Gal Barak as its Inkjet Eastern Region Sales Manager. Barak most recently worked for 3D printing company Stratasys. Why did he make this move and what are his thoughts on 2D versus 3D? Read more.

Here’s How You Can Help Take the Pulse of the Industry!

When approached to participate in a survey, the initial response for many is to decline because participation takes time and the value proposition is not always clear. This article explores the benefits that survey data can deliver to the industry as a whole.

More Reasons to Focus on Print-to-Mobile

With the exploding growth in e-commerce, the ability to prove print’s value as a primary driver of online activity becomes increasingly important. This includes m-commerce, which is growing even faster than e-commerce in general. This makes investment in print-to-mobile technologies a must.

How to Simplify Print MIS Implementations

Print MIS implementations are complex, they touch every corner of your business. It is critical that you actively looks for ways to simplify the project in order to increase your chances of success.

Looking at Consumer Trends from a Channel Perspective

Are you reaping the benefits of free consumer trends reports to benefit your client base? If not, you are leaving opportunity to help your clients refine their targeting, improving their messaging and channel mix, and better understand the competitive landscape.

Digital Direct-To-Shape Market

Direct-To-Shape (DTS) has become a commonly used term in recent times. We want to try to clarify a little around the definition of DTS and to describe the state of this particular art. We are prompted to do this by our recent visit to the InPrint Europe Industrial Print show in Milan, Italy, where there was a lot of discussion of the potential of DTS as a market.

Flexible Packaging is Hot – November 2017 M&A Activity

TC Transcontinental executes long term strategy in flexible packaging, Graphic Packaging acquires again; Kingery Printing acquires United Graphics; and more…

It’s an Omni-Channel World… Especially During the Holidays!

This holiday season, savvy retailers are working to meet customers on the channels where they are shopping and buying, whether it’s in a physical store, online, or via social media. This article highlights how various retailers are driving sales and encouraging engagement with multi-channel integrated campaigns.

The Customer’s Perspective of Web-to-Print

I’ve been interacting with a lot of customers of web-to-print lately (the people who order from web-to-print, not the printers). In every single interaction I learn something new.

Apocalypse Soon? Retail’s Troubles and What They Mean for POP Printers

Brick and mortar retailer has been struggling with foot traffic. According to early estimates all signs are pointing to more ecommerce, less in-person commerce this holiday season. What does this mean for retail graphics?

The Cloud Lets Printers Go Computer Agnostic

When we think about the cloud, we think about benefits such as anytime, anywhere access, cost savings from the elimination of servers, and automatic updates. But there is one benefit that many people don’t think about—computer agnosticism.

Tax Reform May be Near; Only Dr. Doom Would Celebrate a Recession Anniversary

What’s more important than tax reform? A tenth anniversary! It’s been ten years since the recession started. What does one get as a gift? We’re told it’s tin or aluminum. Does that mean someone’s giving all of us litho plates? Tax reform is a much better gift for the celebration. The reform is flawed, but better than nothing. There are some signs that the economy is improving for real, and Dr. Joe has his unique twist to offer.

Direct Mail Engages…Even with Millennials!

Even in this digital age, tried-and-true direct mail communications continue to get noticed. This article cites recent research from Keypoint Intelligence – InfoTrends to explore how direct mail can be used to cut through the clutter and capture the attention of today’s “always on” consumers.

My Evolving Opinions on Project Management

Creating results in your company takes coordinated effort by a group of people – some would call that a “project”. Project management is the art of keeping all the contributors to the project on task “herding the cats.” This skill set and this role is underappreciated in our industry. When you need to get complex things done with a group of people – you need a project manager to drive the project to successful completion.

Collaboration: The Low-Hanging Fruit of Cloud Migration

Whether it’s for administrative, production, or marketing initiatives, the cloud brings significant benefits to businesses of all sizes. One of those benefits, and one that is the easiest to implement, is collaboration. Let’s take a closer look at this low-hanging fruit from the cloud.

Using Overall Equipment Effectiveness in Flexo Packaging Printing

Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) is a powerful tool that can be used to benchmark, identify areas for improvement, and measure progress. It combines equipment availability, performance, and quality (waste) into a single metric.

Do We Need to Move Beyond the Terms “Prepress” and “Workflow”?

As an industry, have we moved past the terms “prepress” and “workflow”? Are they too broad to provide any significant benefit to the industry discussion? There is an argument to be made that it’s time to break up the process and discuss it in terms of its discrete elements.

Print Software Investments Have to Fit into Your Technology Stack

When you buy print software for your business, it needs to “fit” into the technology stack you already have. This means that it solves challenges you cannot solve with your existing software and it will fit with the other pieces of your technology.

Want Better Marketing? Study Says: Automate It

A new report from eMarketer looks at the growing use of marketing automation to help marketers better manage their marketing consistency and effectiveness across channels. Data is drawn from third-party data over the multiple years. The results beg the question: What are the implications for MSPs and print?

Printing Ladies of the Night at Roland’s “Image Imaginarium”

One of the pioneers of digital art walks through the steps involved in printing images for a recent book project and complementary dye-sublimation aluminum prints.

The Truth is Not Always in the Headline

Look at the shiny object, and please don’t peek behind the curtain. It’s a data game that’s played by many, and it starts with a good headline, and sometimes includes a great chart. A rising stock market without increasing revenue? Declining e-book sales that conveniently ignore niches that are contrary? And then there’s one for the record: the LP record. A pretty chart makes that story convincing, but only if you forget history. Don’t fall into that vinyl LP trap: there’s a hole in the middle of it.

Information is Power… Use It to Make Your Best Business Decisions!

Printing business executives and managers who have learned to fortify their companies' business plans and strategies with a consistent flow of useful and compelling business data will be much better positioned to unlock growth potential and protect against sales declines. This article explores how business leaders can use internal and external information to drive business expansion.

Print MIS Product Spotlight: printIQ

The Print MIS/ERP system is the foundation to your overall print business technology stack. It is the system that should run your business. Many Print MIS solutions have and continue to expand their support for a diversified printing operation. One of printIQ’s strengths is its approach to and the execution of a modular approach to supporting additional manufacturing processes

Solution Selling of Print: Find the Challenges Important to the Customer

The solution sale only works if you’re solving the problems that are most important to the customer. The race to find solutions often results in sales teams wasting tremendous effort solving the wrong customer challenges. When you first agree on the challenges and their importance to the customer – solution selling works.

Understanding the Alphabet Soup of Expanded Gamut Printing

CMYK, XCMYK, CMYKOVG, ECG, Fixed Palette – so many terms to describe various types of process printing. What do they all mean and why should you care? We’ll explore all of that in this article.

AWA’s Annual Market Update: Release Liner For Pressure-Sensitive Labels

Overview of the annual update on release liner for pressure-sensitive labels by industry market research firm AWA (Alexander Watson Associates).

Xerox Sets the Page Free at NYC’s 92nd Street Y

The company’s unique rebranding project resulted in an anthology of current authors writing about work, a series of videos, and a book launch event with author readings at New York’s venerable 92nd Street Y.

Are You Using Call Tracking to Prove Direct Mail ROI?

Call tracking provides vital insight and marketing intelligence to help clients optimize their marketing channels, messaging, and focus. This post takes a look at how three clients benefited from using call tracking to prove and optimize the value of their direct mail.

Differentiating Your Business with Wide Format

Wide format printing is a profitable and complementary product offering for print service providers that are seeking new markets and higher-margin businesses. This article discusses the three key practices for success in this market.

Transactional Print – Fertile Ground for Consolidation – October 2017 M&A Activity

OSG Billing Services, now owned by PE firm Aquiline Capital, adds first bolt-on with acquisition of Microdynamics, label printer Brook & Whittle acquired in secondary buyout, Vomela buys another commercial printer; and more…

Flint Digital Group’s President & CEO Talks Strategy

Following last week’s announcement of the strategic alliance between EFI and Xeikon, transferring sales, marketing and service responsibility for Jetrion inkjet label presses to Xeikon, Zwang and Sherburne had the opportunity to speak with Benoit Chatelard, President & CEO of Flint Group Digital Solutions, to gain a bit more depth to the story. He was joined by Mark Brussel, CFO.

When to Buy a Different Print Software Solution

Purchasing new software is exciting; it’s full of potential, the vendors invest a lot in making the sales process enjoyable. This influences our reaction to when our existing technology gets hard or frustration – it can feel easier to quit and buy a different platform thinking that will solve all our challenges.

Making Sense of, and Profits with, Technology

In our rapidly evolving world of often disruptive technology, making sense of the options available to printing companies can be challenging. Buying a new press is no longer a sufficient investment to ensure ongoing profitability. Printing companies must also invest in a range of solutions that optimize productivity and streamline workflow. In this article, Bondy and Sherburne provide concrete advice that will help printing companies in making the right technology decisions as they plan for 2018 and beyond.

Defining Cloud Production for Printers

Cloud production doesn’t have to be complicated. A simplified definition, along with three ways to use the cloud for business, change the conversation from “why should I?” to “what’s the big deal?”

Fed Change Means Fed Same, Shipments Tumble, Economy Muddles, and Can I Interest You in the Best Leftovers Ever?

We have a new chair at the Fed who is likely to stay the course, no matter how damaging that is. This month’s shiny object is the unemployment rate; don’t look at how it got there. A kerfuffle and a scuffle, and it all happened because of used equipment, which means the once mighty aren’t any more. And printing shipments… can we talk about something else?

Jetrion Comes Home – Inside the Xeikon Jetrion Partnership

This week, after several months of negotiation, EFI announced a strategic partnership with Xeikon whereby sales, marketing and servicing for the Jetrion line of digital UV inkjet label printers would be transferred to Xeikon with the Jetrion trademark and ownership of ink manufacturing remaining with EFI. Zwang and Sherburne dug into the details.

Where Does Print Fit into Your Clients’ Customer Journeys?

Are your customers mapping their customer journeys? If so, those journey maps can provide critical insights into where your customers are using their channels well and where opportunities are being missed. These insights can help you help your customers while also getting a greater share of wallet.

Fall in Love with the Problem

We are biased towards solutions when the most valuable thing we can do it clearly define the problem first. The tech startup world calls this innovator bias (falling in love with solutions) – there are always many ways to solve something, the more time you spend understanding the problem, the better chances of getting to the optimal solution.

Pioneers in Graphic Design

I was recently given the opportunity to review a new book, Pioneers of German Graphic Design. Did you know that modern graphic design originated more than 100 years ago in Germany? I didn’t. The book is fascinating and includes fabulous imagery. I’ll recap some of it here, but you might want this one for your personal library!

Trends and Futures at Labelexpo Europe: Flexo Goes 21st Century, Embellishments, Emerging Inkjet

It seems like we just finished with drupa 2016, yet Labelexpo Europe 2017 appeared to be a subset extension of that event. Everyone in Label production on any level from around the globe was there, showing and looking at the latest products and trends. It is a very exciting time, with a very promising future for label production. In part one of this two-part series, we looked at some of the major trends and product announcements at the show. In part two of the series, David continues to look a bit deeper at some trends and some interesting futures.

Ink Migration and Food Safety Take Center Stage at Inaugural Radtech Packaging Conference

Radtech’ first UV+EB Packaging Conference last week featured suppliers, vendors, and brand owners surveying the current packaging landscape, with an emphasis on food packaging and safety.

Ricoh Shares Strategy with Media and Analysts at Boulder Facility

Ricoh hosted a small group of media and analysts at its Global Executive Briefing Center in Boulder CO last week. This is one of four sites worldwide that has extensive capability to demonstrate Ricoh’s production printing portfolio, with the others being in Telford (UK), Thailand and Singapore. The company shared its strategy for the Commercial and Industrial Print Group, formed last April, as well as provided a tour of the facilities, including the demo center and some of the labs.

NPES Teams with the CMO Council to Gain Marketer Perspectives on Print

All too often, it seems that within the printing industry, we spend more time talking to each other than to customers. Ask yourself: How well do you truly understand your customers’ businesses, the issues they face every day, and how your services could help them meet their goals and objectives in truly unique ways? What services could you add to be able to do this even better?

A Case Story Isn’t Just a Leave-Behind: 6 Habits for Successful Delivery

A case story isn’t just something that you leave behind before you walk out the door. It is a tool that is delivered in a framework to bring personality and credibility to your business. This article explores how the ability to tell a compelling story can create a meaningful connection between a brand and a customer/prospect.

The Cloud: Speeding Receivables for Printers

Two printer case studies on speeding receivables show another way that cloud business can save print shops money.

What Graphic Communications Students Need to Know

This article contains a young professional’s perspective on how to find a successful career in graphic communications. While it is directed at students, it is also an excellent piece that teachers and professors can use to inspire their students, and that parents can also use with their kids.

Boring Execution as a Differentiator

There is no magic innovation button, there is a boring execution button that can differentiate your business. Consistent execution on complex tasks is a path to profitability – checklists are a key tool to help you get there.

BrandQ: What Does It Mean for Packaging Converters and Suppliers to the Industry

Today, Idealliance announced a new program – BrandQ, designed to provide brands with the proper tools and language to better manage print quality across complex supply chains. What is not addressed in the press release is what that means for packaging converters and suppliers to the industry. We spoke with Idealliance Vice President, Global Print Technologies & Workflows, Tim Baechle to find out more.

“Industrial Printing” Takes Center Stage at SGIA Expo 2017

What turned out to be the penultimate SGIA Expo featured an emphasis on “industrial printing”—a nebulous but increasingly common term for what mainstream printing may be morphing into.

The Fed, Economic Data, and Other Topics

It’s an interesting time at the Fed, especially when Dr. Yellen’s turn is expiring and one of Dr. Joe’s favorite candidates is in the running. There’s a lot of claims about jobless claims, and the claims are not really what they’re claiming. Labels and wrappers? That’s a tiny niche market in the big printing industry. Now 1 in 8 commercial printing dollars are in that specialty.

Xeikon Café North America Draws Larger-Than-Expected Attendance

The first-ever Xeikon Café North America drew a larger-than-expected audience. Xeikon has been using this platform as a gathering point for its customers and prospects at its European headquarters for the last several years. The success of the event prompted Xeikon to launch a North American version, which the company reported would be convened on an annual basis moving forward.

thINK 2017: A Thriving Inkjet Forum

The third annual thINK 2017 event took place during October 9 – 11 at the Boca Raton Resort & Club. The sold out event was the largest thINK conference yet. This article outlines the key highlights and speakers at the show.

The Print Industry Education Gap

There is an educational gap in the print industry, our industry events are still centered around buying and selling equipment rather than preparing printers to compete in the internet age.

Driving Business Growth: How Techniprint Re-Invented Its Business

Phoenix-based Techniprint needed to adjust its business to account for a growing trend to digitally distribute document sets for architectural and construction projects rather than printing a large number of copies of these sets. Adding two HP PageWide XL 8000 wide format printers to its business resulted in a 25% increase in revenues in the first six months.

Augmented Reality: Setting the Record Straight

The interest in Augmented Reality has grown, especially with recent attention paid to the technology by Apple, Google, Snap and others. But there is also a great deal of confusion about Augmented Reality – what is it, really? How is it different from other technologies like QR codes? What is the relevance to print? Read more.

Apple iOS 11 Natively Supports QR Codes

Apple’s new iOS 11 natively supports QR Codes. This means consumers no longer need to download a QR Code reader, know how to use it, or even know what a QR Code is in order to access content.

What Made LabelExpo 2017 So Important?

This year’s LabelExpo event in Brussels was so much more than a trade show that gave vendors a chance to meet customers and impress prospects. This article provides a brief overview of the event, which invited attendees to “Gain an Unfair Advantage.”

Debunking the Top 10 Cloud Myths

Cloud experts Slava Apel and Joseph W. Webb, Ph.D., debunk the top 10 myths about moving to cloud-based production and business workflow.

NPES Responds to Print United Announcement

Many in the industry were surprised by this week’s announcement by SGIA and NAPCO about the launch of a reinvented SGIA Expo called PRINT United, designed to draw in more segments of the print market, including commercial print, publishing, 3D printing and more. I had a long conversation with Thayer Long of NPES, the organizers of two longstanding events, PRINT and GRAPH EXPO, to understand the organization’s reaction. Long was kind enough to provide a statement.

When Your Print Business Workflows Create Unnecessary Artifacts

Everyone is talking about workflow automation; this article is about our attachment to artifacts of common print workflows. We have failed to upgrade our thinking beyond the “page” metaphor for sharing information and gaining agreement.

Winds of Change: SGIA Expo to Become PRINT United; New “Mega-Show” to Launch in 2019

New Orleans may have dodged a bullet when Tropical Storm Nate veered to the east, but strong winds of change were nonetheless buffeting the Ernest Morial Convention Center, as 2017’s SGIA Expo opened on Tuesday with the surprising—some even thought shocking—news that the long-beloved Expo was undergoing a major change.

The Surprisingly Large Promotional and Personalized Goods Printing Market

Digital inkjet is driving promotional products—aka ad specialties—from mass-market to short-run personalized production. These items ared used to promote a product, service or company program, including advertising specialties, premiums, incentives, business gifts, awards, prizes, commemoratives, and other imprinted or decorated items—is a market highly dependent upon print.

High Winds Uproot Data

The hurricanes affected not just the lives of the people who experienced them, but also affected basic economic data. And yes, you can be employed and unemployed at the same exact time, in the same exact government department. The data seem strange, but the long term trends stayed the same. That’s why we call them long term trends. And August’s printing shipments? Don’t ask! There’s a video from a distinguished leader that’s worth seeing… and worth pondering… about print as a medium and you as a business.

Print Supply Chain Consolidation – September 2017 M&A Activity

Barry-Wehmiller consolidates ancillary print equipment sector in a robust deal environment for all things print; makers of equipment, manufacturers of materials and distributors of supplies are in demand; a look-back at the past year; and more

E-commerce is the only reason retail is growing

Inflation and population changes often distort the analysis of economic trends. This chart shows the changing nature of retail sales on a per capita (per person) and inflation-adjusted (using the Consumer Price Index) basis by the percentage change compared to the same period of the prior year.

It’s Time to Take the 15 Page a Day Challenge… and Share it with Friends!

This past July, the Paper and Packaging Board launched its 15 Pages a Day Challenge, which encourages everyone to commit to reading 15 pages each day. This article cites recent research to highlight the benefits of reading on paper and also provides information on the challenge.

Executive Summary: Mid-Year 2017 Business Conditions Survey

This executive report is based on the latest results of the WhatTheyThink print executive survey. It details the state of the industry at mid-2017 and looks ahead to what can be expected, economically and technologically, as we head toward 2018. The foundation of the report is the WhatTheyThink Printing Industry Survey of June 2017. This survey of more than 300 industry executives gauged their current business conditions, top business challenges, and planned investments for 2018. They also described how the volume for offset, color digital, black-and-white digital, and wide-format printing, as well as non-print-based services has changed.

Building Your Business in the Age of Google

Are you interrupting a lot of people to find the few who are in need of your products and services? Or are you working very hard to be found by the customers that are actively seeking out your services?

EFI Rounds Out End-to-End Corrugated Workflow with Acquisition of Escada Systems

Yesterday, EFI announced the acquisition of Escada Systems, a provider of Corrugator Control Systems for the packaging market. The UK company adds another puzzle piece to EFI’s growing ecosystem for corrugated, with its earlier acquisition of CTI (ERP) and development of Nozomi (direct-to-corrugated printer). We spoke with Nick Benkovich to get the inside story.

Labelexpo Europe 2017 - Views and Trends

It seems like we just finished with drupa 2016, yet Labelexpo Europe 2017 appeared to be a subset extension of that event. Everyone in Label production on any level from around the globe was there, showing and looking at the latest products and trends. It is a very exciting time, with a very promising future for label production. In part one of this two-part series, we look at some of the major trends and product announcements at the show.

Why in the World Would Millennials Want a Career in Print?

What Millennial in their right mind would seriously consider a career in the printing industry? There seems to be no place to hide from the preconceived notion of print being an outdated media that’s run by old-school companies who are going downhill. As a 26 year old who has been involved in print since 16, I have experienced my share of career scrutiny everywhere from family gatherings to young professional networking events.

7 Steps for a Great Sales Process

A good sales management plan can help you develop a high-performance team that delivers consistent performance. By developing an understanding of what you need and your current team’s capabilities with today’s new selling approaches, you can hire the right people, onboard them successfully, and give them the support they need to be effective. This article outlines InfoTrends’ 7-step process for developing and implementing a sales management plan.

What Do Crab Cakes and Databases Have in Common?

What do the failed launch of the McDonald’s crab cake sandwich and databases have in common? If you don’t know your audience, it doesn’t matter what you’re marketing or the tools you use to do it. It’s going to be an epic fail.

HP PageWide C500 – Corrugated Inkjet Production Goes Mainstream

HP and others introduced a new range of inkjet corrugated printing presses at drupa 2016. Many of them were improvements and advancements on existing multi-pass machines, but a few, including the EFI Nozomi and the HP PageWide C500, offered unique single-pass inkjet mainstream production solutions. These new machines open up a wide range of new opportunities for using corrugated in mainstream packaging. However, the HP PageWide C500 may be the only solution at this point that can bring this to primary ‘food safe’ packaging.

Are Your Strategic Assumptions Really True?

There are many “common wisdom” assumptions in the industry. One that refuses to die relates to print volume being related to GDP. The data are very clear; it’s technology that plays a bigger factor than macroeconomics. The other is that the effects of digital media will come to an end or will slow down. That one is obviously false; Moore’s Law may not be what it used to be, but we see how technology gets faster, cheaper, and more convenient every day. Bad assumptions lead to bad strategy, lead to dismissing opportunities that should be pursued, and reduce the urgency to act. Don’t let that happen to you or your business.

Koenig & Bauer: What’s Old Is New Again

More than 60 journalists from around the globe gathered in Würzburg, Germany, at KBA headquarters to begin celebrating with the company its 200th anniversary. The event theme is 200 years: Future needs an Origin. It was a unique experience and total pleasure to be part of this historic event, which included a factory tour and a formal gala at the local convention center. Read more.

Direct Mail 2.0: Connecting Print with Online and Facebook Advertising

Companies are making it easy to combine direct mail with Facebook, so here’s why it matters. This post takes a closer look at DirectMail 2.0, which combines direct mail advertising with call and mail tracking, as well as ad retargeting through the Google network and Facebook.

5 Steps to Engaged Customer Experiences

Although we all know that “great service” tends to be referenced in many company value propositions, it really does little to help a business stand out. Market leaders are now focusing on the customer experience, and this article explores how an engaged customer experience can become an effective competitive advantage.

Is Your Print Business Available Online?

What can your customers do online with your print business? How easy is it for your customers to do business with you? Are you asking your customers to use their precious time because your ordering process is inefficient and not available online?