Printing is a competitive business. Although buyers are always seeking a good price, they are also looking for ways to add value to the messages they communicate. Transactional print buyers are working to differentiate themselves with more colors, better papers, and even unique envelopes and self-mailers. Purchasers of direct mail marketing collateral are interested in these same differentiators, but they are also exploring other options—the addition of interesting folds and cuts, embossing, lamination, and spot varnishes.
When Elizabeth and I first wrote the Designer’s Guide to Inkjet back in 2014, inkjet technology and market segments using inkjet were very different from what they are today. At that time, inkjet was embraced by organizations with high volumes of statements, bills, and direct mail. Publishing was starting to get a foothold but was not widely adopted. But today? Today, inkjet pages have skyrocketed, and the range of suitable applications is still growing.
Often overlooked when juggling all the dos and don’ts of selling inkjet’s value to your clients— your print sample kit. Print samples that tell a story by pairing the print solution with a functional story differentiates you from your competitors. Further, story-telling print samples give your sales reps stronger talking points when engaging with prospects and existing customers.
As early adopters of inkjet technology, you all know how exciting this market has become in a few short years. If you think about the evolution of inkjet, you would probably agree that between when inkjet was first introduced to the market ten years ago and where we are today, a big part of that success has been around media options. While there have of course been improvements in inks and printheads, I’m truly amazed at the quick uptick that we’ve recently seen with inkjet-enabled papers.
Capturing consumers’ attention can be difficult. Substrates that make print standout and attract attention are gaining in popularity. In addition, new types of substrates are enabling new print applications. Marketers have high interest in using specialty media to make their printed communications standout and capture attention in a media cluttered world. Media/substrate options for inkjet printing devices have expanded since the early days.
The thINK 2016 conference may be over, but that doesn’t mean the education stops. During the three-day event, both new and existing thINK members united to share inkjet experiences, learn from experts, and hear from some of the most successful inkjet service providers in the industry. More than 30 sessions – designed for all levels of inkjet experience and awareness – were held throughout the event. Now, all the thINK conference presentations are available in the resource center at thINKforum.com, giving thINK members unprecedented access to a robust library of inkjet-related knowledge.
Glatfelter is a thINK founding partner and a Gold sponsor of thINK 2016. We sat down with Rob Keller, Director, New Business Development, Specialty Papers Business Unit and Siva Mudigonda, Manager, New Products to hear their inkjet perspectives.
Midland Paper is a thINK founding partner and a Platinum sponsor of thINK 2016. We sat down with Mike Ratcliff, Midland’s Vice-President and General Manager for Specialty Paper and Film to hear their inkjet perspectives.
Domtar is a thINK founding partner and Platinum sponsor of thINK 2016. We talked with Jay Abraham, Technical Sales Manager, to hear why Domtar is such an enthusiastic supporter of thINK.
Appvion (formerly Appleton Papers) is a thINK founding partner and a Platinum sponsor of thINK 2016. We sat down with Jeff Luehring, Business Team Leader and Connie Evers, Brand Manager of the company’s inkjet team to hear their inkjet perspectives.