Are you Becomming a New Age Print Company

In recent years, the print industry has undergone tremendous change, primarily as a result of technology and the emergence of other competing media. That being said segments of the industry are robust and growing.

Generally, the industry is comprised of three different, but sometimes overlapping, industry segments

  • Informational printing – including books, magazines, newspapers, and similar products, designed primarily to convey information content. This sector of the industry has been hit hard by changing technology.
  • Marketing printing – including advertising flyers, posters, wide format, point-of- purchase displays, direct mailing pieces, and similar related products and services. This sector, while it did suffer slowdowns beginning with the Great Recession, as marketing budgets were reduced sharply, is back and experiencing healthy growth once again.
  • Logistical printing – without question the fastest growing segment of the industry, this encompasses packaging, fulfillment services, and similar related products and services. This is the area of the industry that is least affected by new competitors, but where the technological changes have been most significant

In recent years, there has been a fair amount of inaccurate information about the state of the industry and its health. Much of this has been the result of the excessive focus on the Informational Sector, with high profile magazines and newspapers closing, and the advent and growth of e-books and on line news sources.

The Print Industry it is at a  pivotal juncture. The industry is being redefined by significant changes in technologies, customer expectations, overall GDP growth, industry growth prospects, and industry consolidation. The successful printer of the future will re-define the print business differently than the past. New technologies, skills, market approaches and integrated services will define the Print Industry of the future.

An article titled The Future of Print by Andrew Paparozzi, published on September 29, 2014, reported on a study of owners and managers of companies that print. This “Future of Print” study, reported  “what was” is rapidly being overtaken by “what can be.” Examples cited were:

  • Generic direct mail compared with highly personalized direct mail carrying “QR codes or PURLS that allow you immediate feedback on the success/failure of the ”
  • Mass-market catalogs compared with “on-demand, evergreen catalogs with variable-data processing tailored to individual needs and delivered very ”
  • Traditional business cards compared with cards with “QR codes on the back to scan contact information directly into the phone without ”

The survey concludes, “of course, innovation will continue, with print incorporating new ways to create value over the (future)…the opportunity for every company in our industry is to understand how our clients and prospects can benefit from the innovation…

The National Association for Print Leadership(NAPL), published The Tenth Edition of State of the Industry Series states that old Print Industry thinking must be purged. The winners in the future will have nothing to do with size, traditional equipment configuration or ownership structure.

The mindsets and activities below, were included in the NAPL report, as required, for future success in the Print Industry.

  • The Successful Company needs to master new skills, methods and mindset because in an industry that is being redefined, as ours is, it isn’t the strong that get stronger, it’s the most flexible and adaptable, the most knowledgeable and best informed that get
  • Integrating services-not simply adding services, into programs that make us more valuable to the Company’s clients is key to

Though this report clearly indicates the need for change it’s clear that for those firms that can adapt and evolve, there is real benefit to be achieved, with fewer and fewer firms pursuing a steadily growing market

The Print Industry (PIA) also published a report on the future of the Print Industry “Beyond the Horizon Report“. The Report identifies the following characteristics as among those required to thrive in the future print industry.

  • Plants will be multi-process in providing conventional (sheet fed or web) printing integrated with digital and various ancillary services as a “one stop” shop that can match the technology to the job and combine multiple technologies in the same job.
  • They will be “solution providers” and marketing service organizations that focus on higher end value-added products and services and market both deeper and higher in their customer’s
  • In total the evolving, adapting printing firms will exhibit the keys to success of many of today’s industry profit leaders with a “specialized diversification” strategy in particular print market segments while diversifying into more value added ancillary services and printing

3 industry reports, one conclusion, The Formula for Success in the Print Industry has Changed. A “New Age Print” Company’s sustainable competitive advantage will require integrating new and existing technology, industry experience and know-how, and a one stop shop mindset, that offers customers unique solutions which satisfy their needs, reduce logistical risk, and improve support and service levels. Flexible manufacturing processes and data handling capabilities for Variable Data printing will be an assumed capability.

 

Are you and your company preparing to succeed.

Fulfillment on Steroids

A local printer had a customer who wanted to implement a loyalty program that required a card, letter, and thank you card, to be inserted into an envelope, with a multi page brochure. The envelope is placed into a custom carton with a leather portfolio, a pen, then sealed, and shipped via Fed Ex. Lots of hand work , coordination, and careful execution to deliver the high end package as intended.

Solution

NCLA was called into action and made the PVC cards, printed the letters, printed the thank you cards and received everything else to be placed securely in our inventory. * We personalized all that we produced, on our HP Indigos, and created a fool proof method for matching, affixing, inserting, fulfilling and shipping the product.

Results

NCLA used the white glove treatment on this one and it showed. Thousands of these packages went out without any issues. The balance of inventory has been used again and again as new orders continue to roll in. What started as a complicated program, soon became just another unique project for NCLA. The key to success…Flexibility. NCLA can do just what you need to provide cards, digital print, matching, affixing and fulfillment like no other.

“NCLA was the best choice for our program. We needed someone to work with us and provide solutions and that is just what they did”.

J.B.Local Print Shop Owner, Southern California

*NCLA, Inc. prides itself on being a committed strategic partner with complete confidentiality regarding all customer accounts.

Airline Soars with NCLA Fulfillment Program

A major printing company received an RFP from one of the nations top airlines for the fulfillment of their Frequent Flyer Program, but the quantities were too small and there were unique elements making the job unfit for our customer’s normal card division. The sales rep saw potential and called NCLA to see if we could help. This airline is one of the largest airline in the United States, worth billions, is profitable, growing, and could grow into a very nice account for our client.

Solution

NCLA worked closely with our customer’s sales and estimating team to provide a workflow for the cards, letters, custom teslin die cut pieces, personalization and fulfillment with a competitive estimate to match (only for the work that said client determined was inefficient for their facilities). Eric Diller, of NCLA, went with the client’s sales team to make the presentation to the airline and won the business.*

Results

NCLA works intimately with our client to process data weekly and monthly. Together we mail personalized cards, luggage tags, and letters to the airline’s coveted international and domestic frequent flyers. NCLA set up systems and programs to handle the incoming files, digitally print, die cut, match, affix, insert, seal and mail using a mail comingle service. NCLA carries the inventory, provides reports, and works directly with the airline on appropriate issues.* Our client now has reliable support to grow the business and can go after additional print and mailing services within the airline’s organization. In short, our customer has a brand new, large potential account with huge upward possibilities due to their sales rep’s vision to engage NCLA’s expertise.

“NCLA is phenomenal to work with. They provide solutions to difficult requests, think outside the box, and work like an extension of my own office to make this project a success”.

W.H.Senior Sales Executive, CA

*NCLA, Inc. prides itself on being a committed strategic partner with complete confidentiality regarding all accounts.

 

Innovative Solution Creates Picture Perfect Results

Our print client works for an on line photography retailer who wanted to send out a self-mailer acquisition package with the perfect enticement offer. The customer had great data and the right offer to attract new customers. The trick was that the self mailer needed a “double-clean release” card, printed 4cp + PMS + Spot UV varnish over black and PMS, one card for the recipient and one for a friend.

Solution

The sales rep remembered NCLA could print clean release cards and gave us a call.* We worked with the printer to help design the perfect combination of materials, size and affordability to make the double combo card. Samples were sent for testing and soon the test run was ordered. The printer sent the folded self mailers to us, came in for a press check, and signed off on a great looking double card that met the high expectations of his client. We finished the project on time and on budget.

Results

Success! We have run the job multiple times since that first test run, which can only mean one thing. The response rate is great. Key factors in the success of this program…the sales rep knew who to call, the self mailers coming in on time and packaged cleanly, NCLA’s 175 line screen/4cp printing and PMS color matching, along with our speed and accuracy in printing and affixing. Home Run!!!

I’m sure glad I knew who to call. NCLA has been great from the start. Due to the success of this project, I am in a much better position with my client than before. I am looking to partner with NCLA on other projects for new customers as well.

R.H.Senior Sales Executive, CA

*NCLA, Inc. prides itself on being a committed strategic partner with complete confidentiality regarding all accounts.

Welcome Package is Magnetic

Our customer has a large cable company client that wanted to send out a self-mailer welcome package to new subscribers with a refrigerator magnet attached inside. The project required the expertise to fugitive glue the magnet, duplex ink jet, fold and glue shut with a turn time from data received to mail that was critical.

Solution

The sales rep called NCLA.* We engineered a way to glue affix a supplied magnet to the supplied mailer, then duplex ink jet both sides, fold, glue shut, and mail within a few days from receipt of data. All the materials were provided from our client. NCLA worked with our customer’s sales and production team, and with the USPS, to confirm the best way to achieve all the goals. Then the client changed directions and wanted a clean release card instead of a magnet on the inside. NO PROBLEM. NCLA was able to match the material for the cards, print, affix, and continue the program with barely a hitch in the schedule.

Results

NCLA processed the weekly project with English and Spanish data files arriving Monday and mail dropping on Thursday. We took care of the data processing, proofing, ink jetting and mailing every week. Our customer sent the data in on Monday, then approved the PDF proofs on Tuesday. We processed on Wednesday, and mailed on Thursday. One of the key factors in our success, was our coordination and flexibility to handle multiple sizes along with multiple files and get the mail out every week. *

I’m not sure how I could have pulled this off without the speed, agility, and brilliance of NCLA. They worked with me and the rest of my team to keep a demanding but loyal customer happy.

D. M.Senior Sales Executive, Phoenix, AZ.

 

*NCLA, Inc. prides itself on being a committed strategic partner with complete confidentiality regarding all accounts.