Editor's Note: Taking It to the People

Welcome to the third and final part in our special three-part July/August summer issues. The end of summer is here and in some places, school bells have already begun to ring—depending where you are in the country.

In this issue, we’re concluding our three part series about wide-format buying habits, focusing on the consumer segment of the market. One of the most interesting findings—to me at least—was that the vast majority of wide-format print service providers do significant business with consumers. According to InfoTrends’ Tim Greene, out of the 300 print service providers surveyed only 14 percent reported that they do NO business with consumers. The mean, however, derived nearly 15 percent of their business from consumer customers. In this current economy and market, 15 percent is a pretty respectable number.

So, do you have a B2C strategy? It might be time to take a look at what products you're already offering that might be applicable to the consumer market. Some are easy such as photo enlargements and posters. But how about life-size wall appliqués? Custom wallpaper? Custom artwork?

Turn to page 15 to find out the rest of the details of the study.

Other highlights:

  • As part of our coverage of the wide-format market, we've also provided three resource charts in this issue: RIPs, flatbed printers, and overlaminates where you'll be able to compare the current crop of products in these market segments.
  • Outdoor Signage: Special event graphics offer an opportunity for wide-format print service providers to provide ideas and solutions that help their customers maximize their ad dollars and build their brand and sales.
  • Cover Story: 360 Wraps recently completed a unique wrap as part of the historic Three-Fifths Countdown to History bus tour that took Eric Williams, documentary filmmaker and teacher, and eight De Soto Middle School students from Dallas to Washington, DC, to celebrate the election of President Barack Obama.

Stay tuned for the next issues. With Print ’09 and SGIA on the horizon in the upcoming months, there’s still a lot more to come.