4. Cross Platform & Multimedia/Multi Product Capability
Also see Opportunistic Technologies Number 4
An increasing number of print buyers want to automate providing requests for quotes and job submissions-but may need to be trained for optimum cost-effective results.
Also see Opportunistic Technologies Number 1
The top Opportunistic Technologies are:
In the opinion of the Selection Committee, implementation of web-to-print capability offers the most immediate opportunity for printers not already offering this service. Web-to-Print integrated with complete sortation of postal discount, e-presentment, and possible e-payment can enhance this opportunity. Several caveats for this selection: a) make sure that this approach fits with key opportunity applications; it is not suitable or necessary for all; b) for efficient use, it may be necessary to demonstrate how to write a printing specification; and, c) consider how this approach meshes with or impacts the sales force.
2. Value-Added Printing
Value can be added to printed products making them unique and marketplace differentiated with dimensional printing (often requiring unique die cutting), UV coating to create special effects, embossing, foiling, lenticular, security/anti-counterfeiting, the use of unique materials and unusual folds, full turnkey QR codes, including web material. A committee suggestion is for every printer to have someone responsible for creating unique value-added.
3. Marketing Services Provider
Morph into a Marketing Services Provider. However, before attempting to make this move, be sure to understand what it entails. To become a Marketing Services Provider, the changing company must have the knowledge, resources, inclination, drive, the right personnel, and a detailed plan. The addition of a few products does not make a printer a Marketing Services Provider-it requires a conversion from being print-centric to becoming full marketing-centric without prime allegiance to any specific media.
4. Cross-Platform and Multimedia/Multi Product Capability
Offering a wider range of products can provide a traditional printer with new opportunities. In today's marketplace, it has become impossible to reach any specific audience with a single media. Being able to offer media versatility provides opportunity with a caveat-to expand media offerings requires knowledge, resources, inclination, drive and a detailed plan similar to that of a Marketing Services Provider. Today's multimedia opportunity may become tomorrow's expectation in as soon as five years.
5. Vertical Specialization
Specializing in a limited number of customer (not printing process) vertical markets can provide printer opportunities, if the specialization requires a combination of customer market knowledge and specialized production capability to produce unique products for the selected end market.
"As our industry knows too well, the challenges facing printers run the gamut, from a recovering economy to a decreasing emphasis on print due to e-competition, environmental concerns and more," said Bill Lamparter, Chair of the MUST SEE 'EMS program, and President of PrintCom Consulting Group. "In large part, how successfully a graphic communications service provider fares in this changing era of print will depend upon how, and how well, they implement and integrate technology across their operations."