connect Magazine: What’s On Your Floor?

connect Magazine: What’s On Your Floor?

In excitement for Fineline’s upcoming March/April Connect Magazine, we wanted to give readers a quick teaser! Look out for the Connect Magazine publication to hit your doorsteps in a couple of weeks. If you’re not receiving our beautiful bimonthly publication packed with articles devoted to marketing, marketing services, and strategic concepts for marketers – subscribe here today!

What’s on your floor?

When it comes to buying print, one of the most important factors buyers have is the iron on the floor. According to “The New Print Buyers: Who They Are, What They Want and What You Should Do” by industry experts and consultants Margie Dana and John Zarwan, 73 percent of print buyers say equipment matters. In addition, the study found that only 13 percent of print buyers want their printers to “just print.” The study polled 315 print buying and marketing professionals in corporations and creative agencies across the United States and Canada.

The new print buyers: who, what and why

The transformation of the role of print in the marketing mix has had a significant impact on the print industry. While print remains a critical component for marketers, it is losing both share of budget and, more importantly, share of mind.

As the marketing mix has changed, so, too, has the make-up of print buyers. While many companies still have “print buyers” who are primarily responsible for purchasing print, increasingly buying print is not their primary function within the organization. In addition, other corporate professionals, such as marketers, for whom print is a small part of a larger project, now purchase print. How print is bought is also shifting. Online print buying is growing through internal corporate portals, as well as directly with print providers.

To succeed in this new environment, printers must understand this transformation and adjust to it. What do these new print buyers want? Are they, in fact, interested in value-added services? And if so, which ones? What percentage of their time is spent on print-related activity?

Industry experts and consultants were interested in providing insights into the new print buyer so that service providers can understand the role that today’s print buyer plays in sourcing print, as well as what additional services these print buyers are looking for from their print partners.

What They Want

Over the past few years, much has been written about how printers need to transform themselves from commodity contract manufacturers that put “marks on paper” to something called “marketing services providers.”

Printers need to up their game by bringing customers and prospects fresh ideas about how to use print. This represents a great opportunity for printers to show that they care about their clients’ business and can offer solutions. Many print buyers are also looking for such print-related activities as fulfillment services and personalization. While these are important to all of those who buy print, they are especially valuable to those for whom print buying is a central part of their job. Moreover, the bigger the print budget, the more the buyer is looking for creative and innovative solutions.

“I would like advice or suggestions on how to make the piece better”

“Innovation in design and function, new substrates and ideas to help differentiate us from the competition”

Read more here.

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Featured in Connect Magazine, March/April 2016.

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