How your shop can stay ahead of developing trends in P-O-P.
[Continued from High-End UV Flatbeds and the Changing Dynamics of In-Store Marketing.]
The current need to develop web, digital, and mobile platforms has reduced the total amount of money marketers spend on printing. Today, many large buyers of retail graphics expect full service from their print providers. They don’t want to go to one PSP for large graphics and another company for small-format prints.
Many shops that specialize in P-O-P and retail graphics use a combination of print platforms and workflow-automation and color-management software that enables them to shift jobs to the platform that makes the most business sense. Some digital flatbed presses can do work that was formerly done on either offset or screen presses, enabling companies that already specialized in label printing, packaging, or marketing collateral to offer P-O-P and graphics-printing services to their existing clients.
“Traditionally large screen and offset printers have been the first to adopt digital printing technology and cost effectively produce smaller runs,” says Gasch. “However, smaller volume print shops are also investing in higher-end digital flatbed equipment to increase production capacity, while maintaining a very high service level.”
At an SGIA press conference, Fujifilm introduced Ryan Brueckner, CEO of Direct Edge Media. The young entrepreneur got into the printing business right out of college in 2001 with a 60-inch HP Designjet 5000. Today, Direct Edge Media is a full-service print shop that specializes in short-run and fast-turnaround digital printing. Their equipment list includes three Xerox digital presses, three offset presses, two 98-inch Fuji Acuity flatbeds, a 138-inch Fuji Grand-Format Uvistar, three Roland solvent printers, three 60-inch HP Designjets, and a 74-inch D.gen textile printer.
Direct Edge Media’s P-O-P and retail segments were growing so rapidly that they recently added an Inca Onset high-speed flatbed. Doing runs of 1000 sheets on the Onset isn’t uncommon, Brueckner said, because Direct Edge Media customers consider digital printing the best option. They like the quality, fast turnaround, and flexibility as well as the ability to easily print a few color-matched replacements for prints that get damaged during shipping or installation.
At the Executive Outlook Conference prior to the 2014 Graph Expo, printing consultant Hal Hinderliter emphasized that the growth of online communications hasn’t affected all forms of print uniformly. He noted that “print that informs” is declining in favor of “print that performs.”
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