PODi, the Digital Printing Initiative, is pleased to announce that the 2011 AppForum conference for digital printing and direct marketing, held January 31 - February 2 in Las Vegas, enjoyed strong attendance from the industry's most prominent thought leaders and innovators. "The conference continues to mature," says Caslon CEO and PODi president Rab Govil. "Attendance has increased over 30 percent in the past two years alone, in spite of the tough economic climate. It is clear that digital printing and relevant marketing strategies are leading the way to sustainable growth and more profitable business models. The AppForum, with its uniquely unbiased, vendor-neutral approach, has become THE educational event for people who want to compete successfully in these arenas."
This year's international AppForum hosted 400 attendees from 14 countries, including: Australia, Austria, Canada, France, Germany, Guam, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. Twenty-three sponsors, including: Gold Sponsors Canon, Fujifilm, Kodak, Konica Minolta, Pageflex, Xerox, and xpedx, supported this year's AppForum.
Keynote Presentations from Mimeo.com's Charlie Corr, who presented insights into new Print-on-Demand opportunities, and Rab Govil who previewed the results from breaking Caslon research on direct marketing best practices, anchored the conference. Marketers Sharon Buntain, from Tissot Swiss Watches, and KLRU-TV's Shane Guiter, shared valuable perspectives from the customer point-of-view, along with actionable tips for service providers on building partnerships.
There were many standouts from the 44-session line-up – here are just a few attendee favorites:
- "Fabulous. I'm teaching ALL of this to my sales department" - Barbara Daniels, Magna IV
- "Amen! More owners need to have buy-in on this. Very good session!" - Deb Skoog, Visions
- "I have a few creative ideas I can implement immediately" - Carisa Holmes-Peters, Holmes Printing
- "Best session I attended at PODi 2011. Very good, useful info and speaker was easy to understand and knowledgeable on subject matter." - Sherryl Smith, Corporate Graphics
- "Absolutely great information from extremely relevant industry-leading developers." - Mike Dreiling, Gateway Printing
- "Best session thus far. Thank you for shedding light on data!!" - Liz Gerschultz Payne, AlphaGraphics
Representatives from the company winners of the 2011 PODi Best Practices Awards (Renee Hall, Dukky; Steve Hall, Boelte-Hall; and Pinpoint 360) were honored and explained their outstanding digital printing case studies in well-attended break-out sessions. The conference also featured hosted networking dinners and the AppForum's first Tweet-Up, led by CustomXM's Paul Strack and Amy Bradley-Hole. Networking, as usual, was a highlight – "Awesome event and terrific people," said Sheraan Amod from Personera, "Great to see so many interesting players in the solutions space." Communicorp's Amanda Bass echoed the thought, "I returned with a wealth of information and a wonderful new network of people."