By Brendan Perring, IPIA
There is a very significant trend building momentum across the graphic arts industry, and specifically commercial print. Print designers, specifiers, marketeers, and brand managers are all demanding more from the page to create an impact on their customer-base. And being able to closely advise and guide them in doing so offers printers a real growth opportunity.
Marine Kerivel-Brown, International Marketing Manager, Duplo International, has an important viewpoint on this specific trend, highlighting: “This element is something historically that commercial printers have not had a culture of doing pro-actively. But being able to turn the tables and create new print volumes with customers by inspiring them, showcasing how their marketing campaigns or print encapsulated products could make more impact and deliver better results, is how they need to evolve and grow.
“The technology almost comes second, it is spotting those gaps and then prototyping those products that can command a higher margin. You then scope the technology and find a partner that can help you realise your ambition cost-effectively and quickly.”
When it comes to those higher margin products, Duplo has a very powerful platform that has really been enabling incredible levels of innovation across the sector. The DuSense Sensory Coater enables the creation of highly accurate spot UV effects and opens up an explosive kaleidoscope of speciality embellishments, which can lift the printed piece to new heights and massively increase its perceived value.
With automated set-up and register adjustment and driven by a hot folder input system, it requires minimum maintenance with automated head cleaning and coating from 20 to 80 microns in thickness on sheet sizes up to 364 x 740mm at 1200sph.
As Marine points out, it is not what this clever piece of kit does that is so important, but why it does it: “If you can help a customer differentiate themselves and this leads to increased sales volumes or market share, then you have a customer for life. What you are selling is this creative and technical consultancy. The print and the embellishments it carries is the medium through which that product is expressed and delivered.”
There is of course a space in the market for print businesses that are very specialised in one area, highly-streamlined and that can be highly competitive through economies of scale – whether that is for magazine printing through to large trade houses or even doing things like triplicate forms. The message from Duplo though is that the majority of print businesses need to be consultancy led and be able to say ‘yes’ to a variety of creative, complex and personalised bespoke work. They also emphasise that the process starts with a creative consultation with each customer about how you can help them achieve their own growth objectives.
Marine picks up this point and emphasises why it should be a critical area of focus for print business owners and how Duplo can help accelerate their journey: “As an international organisation we see thousands of print installations and those that are doing very well – we try and understand how they are achieving that. Every time our team visits a customer, they are learning something valuable. We can then bring that knowledge to the table and point out where the growth markets are, what type of applications and formats are exciting print buyers and sharing best practice around problem solving.”
Marine concludes: “Come and see us – we often have customers bringing their own jobs into our showroom and we will cater for that. They really need to know what the machines can do with these niche or specific applications – and not just see a glitzy tested demonstration on core applications that we know are already strengths for us. Let’s see how far we can push the envelope.”
A crucial strength of print as a marketing and communication medium is its ability to stimulate the senses. That is why the Duplo DuSense sensory coater has been fuelling growth for print businesses across the UK
To find out more about how Duplo can support your growth ambitions: duplointernational.com/uk