August 12, 2005, Crofton, MD. — Diron GmbH & Co. KG of Muenster, Germany, Europe’s top web-to-print software platform announced the availability in North America of version Print4Media 3.0. This major upgrade includes several new features and available modules that extend the utility of the platform to entirely new applications.
Print4Media provides a platform with a single user and administrative interface and a common ecommerce tool set that is extended with smart modules that “plug in" to accommodate specific product types and ordering processes. All though classified as “storefront" software, Print4Media is more of a “mall" than a storefront; a single server can be used to support an unlimited number of shops, each with its own look and feel.
New to version 3.0 of the Print4Media platform are the Ad Pro, Direct Mail Pro, and Warehouse Pro modules, as well as a new Online Job Upload module. Direct Mail Pro extends the Direct Mail Easy module by allowing direct mail to include more than simple addressing and salutation personalization of digital printing jobs. Direct Mail Pro allows users to upload ambiguous spreadsheets and relate data fields to available personalization fields that are also defined by the user on the fly for 100% variability in a print job...images, body copy, response forms, multiple inserts, the possibilities are unlimited. “Direct Mail Pro allows users to create, via a web browser, the types of jobs that previously could only be done offline by prepress professionals," said Diron President Thomas L. Rödding. “Now even complex, multipart and highly personalized digital printing products can be set up so real estate agents, car dealers, insurance agents, and other ordinary users can create highly personalized marketing-ondemand mail campaigns right from their desk."
The Warehouse Pro module extends on the capabilities introduced with the Warehouse Easy module. “I hear from printers that they are pitching storefronts to their customers for printed products, but the customers want to add non-printed products, like key chains, coffee cups and so on to their storefront," said Diron’s North American Director of Sales and Marketing Jim Harvey. “It makes sense. If you’re going to tell your franchisees, dealers, or sales reps to order collateral or direct mail promotions from a website, why not get all your marketing materials from the same site? Warehouse Easy provided the ability to list products and order them through the same shopping cart, but customers want more. Warehouse Pro allows customers to setup shops where they can offer one product with variations in color, style, imprint and more. Warehouse Pro is so flexible, some customers are even allowing their users to order actual products from their Print4Media sites, not just marketing material!"
The Ad Pro module adds functionality specifically for advertising. Ad Pro is a tool that allows users to automatically tailor print ads to the trim sizes and specifications of target publications. Whether an ad is intended for a couple or a couple hundred magazines and newspapers, Ad Pro will automatically take the ad and produce a PDF that is specific to the requirements of each media outlet. Ad Pro will resize the entire add to the target size; more than simple resizing, Ad Pro can even grow the ad’s size and rearrange graphical elements if text or product images are added to the artwork. It can be setup to maintain a proportional balance of images and text as an ad is grown or shrunken to meet a publication’s specifications. For instance, Ad Pro can be setup to follow corporate design guidelines and can even handle complex relationships such as resizing a dealer’s logo in relation to a brand logo within an advertisement. Ad Pro can also be used by publishers to accept ads and to automatically tailor a single ad to the unique sizes and requirements of any number of their own publications.
Finally, the new Online Job Upload module incorporates an Acrobat/Callas preflight engine with automated PDF correction and color space conversion. This tool is intended for arbitrary conventional printing jobs. Customers can specify any print job, including all the postpress operations one expects of general commercial printing, and upload their content files to the printer’s server. Upon upload, the Online Job Upload module preflights the customer’s PDF file and prepares it for production to the printer’s specifications.
“Diron has been building customized direct mail and digital printing software since 1991, and when we first introduced Print4Media, as a bundle of software from our customized projects, a couple of years ago we had an immediate lead in technology, flexibility and function over our competitors," said Rödding. “With Print4Media 3.0 we are maintaining and widening that lead. Our policy is that if we have two or more customization requests for a new feature, we will build that feature into the Print4Media platform. Right now we have over 40 customization projects underway, so I can say for certain that more is on the way."
Print4Media has a complete set of ecommerce features such as user registration, product catalogs, shopping basket, order submission with optional approval workflow, report generation, personal image gallery, reordering of previously ordered items, email notifications and much more. It is scalable, has a “self-explaining" user interface for shop users and administrators, and all administration and development is done via graphic user interface — there is no programming language, scripting languages, or custom application programming interfaces to learn. Licensing is straight forward; there are no fees for concurrent users or per seat charges and there is no fee for multiple shops and so on — just one server license. To learn more, visit www.diron.biz or call Jim Harvey at +1 (410) 451-5040.
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