With the increased reliance upon digital media devices and the advent of digital advertising, the print industry has seen its fair share of competition. To good printers, that’s a really good thing. With competition comes more scrutiny in the buyer’s selection process, and when you have a reputation for good work, you’ll get your due. As they say, the cream rises to the top.
While that’s great news for creamy printing companies, it’s meant the end for others. Seeing more successful printing shops acquire the assets and customers of others isn’t an uncommon sight, as even the printing industry has seen its share of printers fall to their all too-Darwinian existence.
Print shops can grow incredibly quickly through these acquisitions, they have an opportunity to expand their capabilities, and offer printing solutions they may have once outsourced. That can mean really, really good things to their customers, too.
Very likely, the printers that survive are the true, artisanal folks who’ve been around a while and have built a strong customer base over the years. For those, who’ve been in operation long enough to become experts at the trade, they get even more tools and resources to bring your message to life. It’s like a really fast runner trying their hand at wide receiver. You can teach them how to catch much more easily than you can teach a really good wide receiver how to run fast. And we like to think we’re one of the fastest.
One of the things we’ve started folding into our portfolio is adhesive artwork, exterior signs and trade show graphics. Quite often, specialty shops produce products of the sort, having little or no background in traditional printing. That gives us a running start, and lets us work with the new technologies with a greater sense of quality and color reproduction than most.
We also have an incredibly valuable resource, as well, in the number of current clients we have. With our investment in the trade, we’re able to provide the extended service offering to existing customers, meeting all of their needs for print projects, especially so for trade shows, events and other times where printing isn’t limited to paper. We’re finding that very often, when we’re called upon for brochures and catalogs, they’re used in applications where banners, wraps and signage are also involved. That makes our position all the more helpful, and that’s a good thing for everyone.
The more things change, the more they stay the same. At least that’s what Jean-Baptiste Alphonse Karr wrote in 1849. It sounds pretty apt to us, because after four generations of growth and prosperity, we’ve weathered the storm of technological and societal changes that have impacted the printing industry, and we’ve been smart about it. There’s always a new trend threatening to disrupt the way everyone does business, and while it’s tempting to be the first one to the game, we put a greater value on expertise than we do the “flash” that can be enticing to others.
Many new printing businesses have formed using 100% digital equipment, doing so on the shoulders of generations of great offset print shops. While their tools offer “an” option, it’ll never be the best option when put up against the true expertise that comes from those with a history in the industry. Knowing “how” digital equipment translates the plate-driven process makes for better decisions on a job-by-job basis, as is deciding whether or not to even run a job digitally.
The world of large format graphics and signage brings the same challenges, and the same opportunities for printing artisans to perfect the processes. We’re very excited to now be able to provide solutions for such applications, and you can count on us to do with with unwavering attention to detail, quality and service. Next time your project calls for something larger or on unique materials, give us a call. You’ll like what we have to offer!