Register Now for PSDA's New Sales Training Program
The Ultimate Sales Training Experience
Dan Seidman, GOT INFLUENCE?
Oct. 17-18, 2013
Join us for a full two-day sales program where you'll train with the 2013 International Sales Training Leader of the Year, Dan Seidman of GOT INFLUENCE?. This program is customized specifically for sellers of print and related services. Learn tips and techniques that will make a lasting impact on your sales behavior so you can make more money.
Watch a video on the Top 10 Elements of Sales Success.
Read more and register.
Increase Sales Through Marketing Webinar Series Continues Sept. 17
Increase Revenue with Existing Customers
Alex L. Goldfayn, CEO of Evangelist Marketing Institute
Sept. 17, 2013
noon ET / 11 a.m. CT / 10 a.m. MT / 9 a.m. PT
Many PSDA members have a lot of customers that generate a small amount of revenue. This webinar will help you assess your customer base, what you offer them, how you charge for that value, and the opportunities that exist for mining your existing customers for additional sales. Additionally, we will look at fees in order to determine whether and how to charge for the value added work that you perform regularly in support of your customers where we can increase prices without increasing your labor.
This webinar is free for PSDA members and $49 for nonmembers.
Read more and register.
Print Myths & Facts from Two Sides
Myth: Print and paper is a wasteful product.
Fact: Paper is one of the most recycled products in the world.
In addition to the sustainable advantage of being made from a renewable resource, paper is the most recycled product in the world. Since we began tracking how much paper gets recycled In the United States back in 1990, the recovery rate for used paper has increased dramatically. We're not only recovering more, but we now know how to get the most environmental and economic benefits from using recycled paper in new products. Two Sides members support the implementation of effective recycling schemes and the minimization and eventual elimination of Print and Paper waste in landfills.
PSDA partner Two Sides U.S. is an independent, nonprofit organization created to provide members of the graphic communications supply chain a forum to promote the responsible production and use of print and paper, improve sustainability standards and practices, share experiences and maximize customer confidence in our products.
Safeguard Completes Purchase of Idaho Business Forms Inc.
PSDA member Safeguard has completed its acquisition of fellow PSDA member Idaho Business Forms Inc. (IBF). Based in Boise, Idaho, IBF is a leading provider of print, branding, business forms and supplies as well as W-2 and 1099 processing services, among other things. In 2012, IBF was ranked 38th on the Top 50 PSDA Member Distributors list by Print Solutions magazine. Terms of the acquisition, which was completed on Aug. 27, 2013, were not announced. The addition of IBF to the Safeguard network is the latest transaction involving some of the largest, most recognized enterprises in the industry. Recent acquisition and related transactions completed by Safeguard include AccuSource Solutions, Advent Business Forms, Blue Moon Promotions, Bradley Marketing Group, Consolidated Graphic Communications, DocuSource Print Management, Innovative Print & Media Group, Intraform, Print Concepts and Print Data East Coast.
Admore Wins Gold Ink Award for Halloween Promotion
PSDA member Admore, a division of Ennis Inc., has been recognized again for its 10th annual Halloween promotion “Death to Boring Folders.” The piece recently received the Gold Award in the folder category from the 2013 Gold Ink Awards put on by Printing Impressions magazine. This competition is regarded as one of the most prestigious in the print industry; this year, there were more than 1,000 entries submitted within 46 categories.
The winning pieces for this award were chosen based on print quality, technical difficulty and overall visual effect. “The Reaper” on the front cover of the folder features foil and emboss work, which includes full detail sculptured emboss with five foil colors — all in perfect registration. The interior features custom die-cut pockets in the shape of headstones. The name of each past Halloween promotion has been memorialized on the tombstones.
Bill Tignanelli, Admore's general manager is once again proud of the work his team has completed. “It is always humbling to have our hard work recognized throughout the printing industry. We put a lot of creative thought and effort into our Halloween promotion each year, and winning these awards helps emphasize our dedication to quality and detailed work.”
AccuLink Installs 29-Inch HP Indigo 10000 Digital Press
HP recently announced that PSDA member AccuLink, a Greenville, N.C.-based trade printer, completed installation of the 29-inch wide HP Indigo 10000 Digital Press to open new market opportunities. Operating since 1980, AccuLink has developed strong partnerships with fellow commercial printers, resellers and distributors, and investing in new technology is key to the company's success as well as continued growth.
“We chose HP because they offer hands-down, quality digital presses,” said Lindsay Gray, partner, AccuLink. “The HP Indigo 10000 is the only press that provides high-imposition efficiency in one, two or multi-color mode to yield nearly three times the production per hour. We're also able to print jobs digitally that simply could not be done before because of the new large format.”
The award-winning HP Indigo 10000 Digital Press builds on AccuLink's existing lineup of digital presses that also includes the HP Indigo 5600 and 7600.
Xeikon to Demonstrate Direct Marketing Applications on Xeikon 8000 Series Platform at PRINT 13
PSDA member Xeikon, an innovator in digital color printing technology, will have a major presence at PRINT 13, including an exhibit of high-quality direct marketing applications produced on one of its Xeikon 8000 Series presses, along with a demonstration of its ThermoFlexX digital imaging system. In addition, the company will reveal more details about its groundbreaking Trillium technology.
PRINT 13 is the most expansive exhibition in the Americas for digital, offset and flexo technologies, products and services. The event takes place Sept. 8-12, 2013, at McCormick Place in Chicago. At Booth 841, Xeikon will produce a range of high quality, high impact direct marketing applications in unique format sizes. These application pieces will be produced on a Xeikon 8000 Series digital color press. The Xeikon 8000 Series presses feature high precision LED-array imaging technology, which combines true 1200 dpi resolution and 4-bit per spot color depth to deliver the finest commercial print quality on the market today. In addition, the Xeikon 8000 Series offers unmatched format flexibility, with a media width of 20.2 inches and unlimited print length, as well as monthly duty cycle of as many as 10 million pages.
Printco Promotes from Within for Prepress Manager Position
PSDA member Printco Inc. recently promoted Ann Koss to pre-press manager. Koss began working with the company more than 25 years ago and has continued to be a key part in the growth and development of the pre-press department. She has transitioned Printco from photo-typesetting to desktop publishing and Mac-based systems, as well as the company's recent transition to CTP systems.
In her new role, Koss will be an important part of the company's management team by investigating/budgeting for new equipment and software needs for pre-press, managing pre-press staff, developing and maintaining ecommerce sites and assisting with analyzing/creating/overseeing implementations of marketing strategies.
“Ann will be a wonderful addition to our management team. She has always set high goals for herself and the individuals she's supervised. Ann's insights to our operation will allow for good working relationships with all the members of our management team, and her positive, can-do-attitude will make for a smooth transition to her new responsibilities,” said Printco President Ken Sperling.
2013 Ratios Show Printing Industry Profits Increasing
Printing Impressions (08/21/13)
Printers in North America are improving profitability even as they continue to face top-line challenges in sales, according to Printing Impressions' 2013 Ratios Survey. The report said participating printers reaped average profit rates of 2.7 percent on sales, up from 1.8 percent in 2012 and representing the highest level in the past six years. Profit leaders enjoyed a moderate rise in profits to 9.9 percent, versus 9.6 percent last year. This brings profit leaders to their highest level since before the recession in 2007.
Materials constituted the largest single cost category for the typical printer, accounting for approximately 36 percent of sales. Total materials costs climbed slightly this year from last year's level of 35.5 percent. Paper alone consumed more than one-in-five sales dollars in 2012, while other major costs incurred by printers last year were factory payroll, factory expenses and administrative and selling expenses. Sales per employee for all printers totaled $155,348, while profit leaders' sales per employee were $171,153. Sales per factory employee for all printers totaled $212,584, compared to profit leaders' average of $238,731.
Wide-Format Imaging (09/13) Steele, Jeffrey
Print service providers that invest in flatbed printers can reap considerable rewards in the form of lowered labor and materials costs, less waste, wider substrate ranges and penetration of the fast-growing POP and retail signage segments. Davis Sign co-owner Milton Davis Jr. said such an investment helped his company experience a 30-40 percent sales boost since January and make enough profit to add another solvent roll-to-roll printer to the shop. Printing on a broader spectrum of materials is another advantage of owning a flatbed printer. "That has broadened our customer base," said Archetype President Steve Carpenter. "All of a sudden, we're doing custom jobs for art museums, zoos and individual artists."
"[Flatbed printing is] not a perfect fit for all; you have to make sure you have enough business in the door before you get it," Davis said. "But if you do, it will make your business explode. Jobs keep pouring in that we can use that flatbed to complete." Davis said PSPs should avoid getting lowest-end machines. "Get a system that might cost you a little more on a monthly payment," he said. "You'll print faster. The quality will be the same, but you'll have faster throughput." Carpenter said the nature of the printer's work should mirror the choice of a flatbed.
Flatbed printer manufacturers have numerous notions about expanding services using flatbeds. Steve Cutler at Fujifilm North America Corp. Graphic Systems Division said there are no limits to flatbed applications. "You are able to print on doors, various household products, [and] basically any finished goods under two inches thick can now have high-end graphics applied," he said. "With our ink formulation technology, we are able to print many different types of substrate, and you are not limited to foam core, styrene and the like. We've printed on cutting boards for samples at trade shows. We've also printed three-dimensional die cut wind chimes, and the effect is spectacular. We are always thinking beyond paper-based products."
Printing Color Labels Directly on Bottles at Process Speed
MyPrintResource (08/23/13) Leahey, Bob
Most printing showcased at the drinktech 2013 event will be coding and labeling related, but there will be at least one full color printer, the KHS Innoprint. Innoprint prints on PET bottles directly in CMYK colors using ultraviolet inkjet. If it performs as advertised, Innoprint will be the fastest direct digital color printer of beverage containers, and the first coming from a major maker of industrial automation systems for the drinks industry. Innoprint's speed is key because it means that digital printing of labels as an integrated part of a production-speed bottling system will become possible. In addition to its UV inks, the Innoprint prints with an optical resolution of 1080 x 1080 dpi and at speeds sufficient to print 36,000 PET bottles an hour. Various PET bottle types can be printed, ranging in size from 0.33 to 1.5 liters, and in diameter from 40 to 120 mm.
Direct full color printing of beverage containers and other cylindrical packaging has been possible for several years but has yet to penetrate the mainstream. At 600 bottles per minute (BPM), the KHS Innoprint is a production-capable system that can keep pace with certain automatic filling machines whose speed usually ranges from 500 to 1,200 BPM. Speed is a major obstacle for full color inkjet in the beverage industry, and UV curing is now the choice of KHS for use in PET bottle-making.
UV curing inks are a sensible option in terms of adhesion and drying time but are frequently an issue for food brands in terms of possible contamination. InfoTrends thinks KHS and INX Digital have resolved this issue via low migration UV inks, which minimize post-curing unreacted monomers. It is believed that the direct imaging use of color digital printing will migrate from a nascent stage into production environments with the help of systems such as the KHS Innoprint. These systems will fuel growth in this application, first at can and bottle manufacturers, as well as drinks production facilities as near-line or in-line systems.
Digital Growth Ignites Innovation
WhatTheyThink (08/28/13) Pericot, Joan Perez
Adoption of digital printing has continued on a global level as new technologies helped print providers convert analog pages to drive new business and boost opportunities with existing clients. According to industry studies, high-end digital printing equipment sales reached unprecedented levels in the past year. The decline of screen and offset technologies is prompting analog manufacturers to increasingly concentrate on decreasing short-run costs, while digital UV and latex technologies are attaining new levels of productivity and quality.
The economic environment also has pressured print providers to cut costs and enhance efficiency while concurrently finding new revenue with higher-value added services. Subsequently, segments such as textiles, ceramics, decoration, packaging and 3-D displays are approaching the tipping point of digital penetration.
Looking ahead, it is essential that print providers harness the potential of emerging applications and customer segments. The significant efficiencies facilitated by digital in comparison to analog will attract new clients who increasingly value the savings of time, resources and costs. Latex and UV-curable solutions will be important contributors to this acceleration, as they have shown consistent success in bringing growth and profitability to customers. Along with the continued expansion of the wide-format printing market is printers' sustained focus on the generation of better print value and broader service offerings to leverage growth opportunities.
High-value, cross-media solutions providing integrated online/offline experiences will draw brand owners and creative agencies seeking to avoid clutter and reach consumers. They frequently rely on print providers to recommend new printing and marketing methods, allowing printers to set up the natural link between printing and mobile web solutions. Moving forward, demand for a more holistic approach across media platforms will grow. Textiles, ceramics, decoration, packaging and similar markets are viable opportunities for digital print service providers.
The industry needs to realize that evolution is the strongest and most sustainable way to move forward, as drastic price reductions cannot be maintained. It is not appropriate at this time for the graphics industry to assume that expansion is a given. The companies with the most successful prospects in the industry will be those that push past established and highly commoditized applications and redefine what is possible in sign and display.
Direct Mail Market Trends
WhatTheyThink (08/23/13) Erlandson, Dave
The last few years have witnessed the rollout of two high-speed inkjet technologies targeting the direct mail sector: high-speed color inkjet presses and high-speed color inkjet heads that can be mounted on existing offset presses. The extra value of color digital presses and heads is derived from the ability to generate fully variable color direct mail. The value is exclusively in color variable since direct mailers have long possessed the technology to do monochrome variable. Fully variable color images can be delivered by both high-speed inkjet presses and high-speed inkjet heads, and adding color heads is sensible for direct mailers who have invested millions in their offset web production systems because it is the lowest cost option to produce fully variable images.
High-speed inkjet presses can deliver cost savings as well as full color variable imaging. All direct mail letters are initially printed with an offset shell and then overprinted with black laser. Employing a color digital press permits printing to be done in a single step, removing the cost of offset printing, storing and handling preprinted forms. Another significant cost saving stemming from high-speed inkjet presses is the ability to run white paper in and the completed job out, providing the direct mailer with the option to co-mingle jobs on press and circumventing co-mingling as a cost center.
Budgets for direct mail are shrinking while online ad budgets are growing as a result of the fast expansion of mobile communications and social media, with the Winterberry Group estimating that direct mail remains the largest single direct marketing expenditure. Epsilon's 2012 Channel Preference Study determined that direct mail alone is insufficient for communicating with customers, while technological innovations play a role in how people opt to consume information and messaging. However, the study also found that it is becoming increasingly evident that mobile device users were 40 percent to 50 percent more likely to favor email and online communications, respectively, than non-users.
Firms that learn to exploit the convenience of Quick Response Codes on mail pieces are experiencing a higher return on investment from immediate conversion, and the next generation of technology to link to the web involves invisible codes. Traction is building for augmented reality applications and print ads using tablets, and they show that print is an ideal coupling for smartphones and other mobile devices. Technology paired with mail will become commonplace, as the future of direct mail will only benefit from the mediums and data that it is tied to.
Smarter Label Printing for Any Industry
The latest developments in printing hardware, computer and materials technology have made it easier to optimize the whole label printing and labeling process. Although some industry specific adaptations must be made, when it comes to digital label printing, businesses will need to consider whether they produce goods in small batches or continuously at a steady rate. Inkjet color label printers are recommended for this type of job, as recent technological advances now allow them to print flawless images at very high rates. Industrial digital label printers are good for producing many different types, colors, shapes and sizes of labels for many different products, all on the same line. A color inkjet label printer can achieve similar results for smaller businesses that need to quickly churn out smaller batches of customized labels of various sizes and colors. For businesses with inventories often overstocked with barcode labels, a digital barcode printer, combined with accessories like label rewinders, cutters and dispensers, can lead to an efficient barcode production line. Barcode printers can produce custom barcodes per product at very high printing rates.
Ricoh Debuts Integrated Cloud Environment Printing Platform
eWeek (08/06/13) Eddy, Nathan
Ricoh is now offering a single interface that connects mobile workers to cloud services for document storage, management and printing through its multifunction products (MFPs). The Integrated Cloud Environment (ICE) helps mobile workers gain remote access to content wherever they happen to be. When scanning paper documents from an MFP to cloud storage services, ICE automatically uses its optical character recognition (OCR) engine to turn them into fully searchable and editable PDF, Word or Excel documents. Mobile workers will be able to access and print these documents from any location in the world via a smartphone, tablet, PC or the MFP itself. ICE does not require a local network connection or printer driver, and data transmissions for the cloud-based platform are secured by 128-bit single socket layer (SSL) encryption. To print from any smartphone or tablet, users access Ricoh Print Cloud through ICE, enabling them to release the document from any ICE-enabled MFP by typing in a six-digit code. ICE should help small and midsize businesses lower costs and improve productivity.
GlaxoSmithKline Launches U.S.-Licensed Vaccines With 2-D Barcodes
Pharmaceutical Business Review (08/07/13)
GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) will print two-dimensional (2-D) barcodes on both the inner containers and outer boxes of the majority of its U.S. vaccines, to support easy electronic-medical record keeping. The small square sized 2-D barcode is printed using the 2-D Data Matrix technology, which can hold more information pertaining to the product identification, expiration date and lot number on each vaccine. It will also help health care providers to update their inventory management system, patient records and vaccination reports automatically, decreasing the need for manual entry of information.
"Through regular electronic scanning of information contained in 2D barcodes, we believe that a more accurate and complete picture of U.S. vaccine usage could emerge," said GSK Vaccines North America scientific affairs and public policy vice president Dr. Leonard Friedland. GSK previously received approval from the Food and Drug Administration to add the 2-D technology to its labeling.
A New Tool to Drive B2B Leads From LinkedIn
Sales Benchmark Index (08/21/2013) Koehler, John
Marketing leaders who are looking to leverage social advertising opportunities and want high quality B2B leads can take advantage of a new tool from LinkedIn. Called LinkedIn Sponsored Updates, the tool will help ensure mobile users get LinkedIn ads. Sponsored Updates are company page updates delivered to the newsfeeds of those not connected yet, or LinkedIn members beyond company followers. The posts can be seen on a user's desktop, smartphone and tablet device newsfeeds, giving marketers the opportunity to deliver highly targeted content to prospects beyond sidebar ads. The Sponsored Updates look similar to a traditional company update and include a link and information about the target page, and members can follow the company, like the update or comment. The tool enables marketers to leverage their buyer persona for enhanced targeting, considering they can distribute content directly to LinkedIn's audience based on the profile data across its more than 225 million members. Sponsored update ads are available through LinkedIn's self-serve platform, and it is easy to start and get your team up and running.