Advancements in printing technology and media options now provide the capability to produce a wide range of products. While some commercial printers are already embracing applications like point-of-purchase signage, window graphics and decals, many are not aware of the multitude of possibilities available to them – and with technology they may already have in place.
“The more effectively and creatively print providers can match their wide format color printer’s capabilities with potential applications, the greater the opportunity to increase business from existing customers and among new prospects,” said Bob Honn, Senior Director, Marketing Support, Canon Solutions America. “And by being able to keep specialty print jobs in house – instead of outsourcing – the more control they maintain over the quality of the product, the production schedule, the pricing and the profits.”
In part 1 of this two part series, Canon Solutions America, Inc., a subsidiary of Canon U.S.A., Inc. examines some of the fastest growing and creative applications being produced with large format flatbed printers and cutters, and how to showcase these to your customers.
Creative Applications Using Wide Format Equipment
First, let’s examine some creative applications being produced using today’s large format color printers and a wide range of substrates.
• Creative Signage: Today’s wide format machines let you print on everything from wood and glass to plastic and vinyl, and even metal, creating the opportunity to print customized and personalized signage.
• Imitation Stained Glass: Customers now have the ability to create the look of stained glass – without the cost or hassle of replacing windows – by simply covering their existing window with an imitation stained glass wide format print.
• Pop-Up Stands: Print pop-up stands provide a range of uses, such as listing events during a seminar or alerting employees or shoppers to critical information. And because pop-up displays are mobile, they can be moved as needed to optimize visibility or facilitate traffic flow.
• Floor Graphics: From retailers to entertainment venues, promotional and information floor graphics provide a great way to reach customers and prospects. In addition, floor graphics can be placed over old, outdated floors, allowing customers to display updated patterns and designs printed at a fraction of the cost.
• Packaging: Packaging is increasingly segmented by geography, niche, and even language. Printing in-house allows print providers to produce smaller runs for customers more cost-effectively, and even experiment with personalized versions.
How to Market These New Applications to Customers
To get the most out of these new capabilities, your customers have to know what’s possible. To drive demand, you have to educate your customers about the enormous untapped possibilities available using today’s wide format printing systems. So how do you reach them?
Because printing is a visual business, seeing is believing. Create eye-catching samples of cutting-edge applications and showcase them by inviting customers and prospects to an open house at your showroom, or by sending them as direct mail or an e-blast, as well as promoting them on your website and via social media.
Wide Format Advancements Present Business-Building Possibilities
Making the most of your media options and color printer capabilities to create a wide range of applications in-house creates the potential for commercial printers to capitalize on cost-effective opportunities to grow their business and profits. And by showcasing the multitude of possibilities for producing specialty applications, you’ll better position yourself to use your color printer to expand your business with new and existing customers – and get a valuable competitive edge.