http://en.wikipedia.orgA printing press is a device for evenly printing ink onto aprint medium such as paper or cloth. The device appliespressure to a print medium that rests on an inked surfacemade of moveable type, thereby transferring the ink.Typically used for texts, the invention and spread of theprinting press are widely regarded as among the mostinfluential events in the second millennium revolutionizing the way people conceive and describe the world they live in,and ushering in the period of modernity.Printing is the making of lots of copies of the same document using movablecharacters or letters. Before the idea of printing, everything published needed to bewritten by hand. Letters, newspapers, and even books had to be copied by hand.Most of the time this was done by monks. Soon, the monks, and everyone else,realized that handwriting everything took way too long. People needed a way tomake printing faster and the printing press was invented.The printing press was invented in the Holy RomanEmpire by the German Johannes Gutenberg around 1440,based on existing screw presses. The printing pressdisplaced earlier methods of printing and led to thefirst assembly line-style mass production of books. A single Renaissance printing press could produce 3,600pages per workday, compared to forty by typographic hand-printing and a few by hand-copying. Books of bestselling authors like Luther or Erasmus were sold by thehundreds of thousands in their lifetime
The printing press was also a factor in the establishment ofa community of scientists who could easily communicatetheir discoveries through the establishment of widelydisseminated scholarly journals, helping to bring onthe scientific revolution. Because of the printing press,authorship became more meaningful and profitable.Book printing as art formThe printing press was also a factor in the establishment ofa community of scientists who could easily communicatetheir discoveries through the establishment of widelydisseminated scholarly journals, helping to bring onthe scientific revolution. The printing press was an importantstep towards the democratization of knowledge.Digital printing is synonymous for short run, fastprinting, so it must be marketed as such. We find alot of success in being able to to turn around jobsusually within a day and with almost offset quality.The first thing to do is to optimise your website withcertain keywords or phrases that are particular to thisquestion. Do not necessarily use the term digital
printing as it is a fairly jargon based term that we inthe industry tend to use. How about fast printing orquick printing, etc.All your marketing in terms of flyers, brochures, etcshould emaphasise the nature of digital printing andhow it benefits the end user (quick turn around, smallerruns, etc).Another fast growing area is in variable data. Thisessentially means that there is static images on theprint as per conventional printing but with the addedbenefit of individually adding text or numbers thatchange for each print i.e. invitations.Variable data seems to be the future in digitalprinting. We are already seeing the results of it withour bills. All individually printed with our details andusages. Explore the world of variable data andopportunities are abundant.http://www.marketingprofs.comPrinters all over the world have seen decliningbusiness.I would start by talking with current and recentclients to find out why they are using less of
your services. Your company MUST understandthis before you can put together a newcampaign to increase sales. Obviously,something has changed and your company hasto respond to it.Maybe you need to offer different services.Maybe your customer service is a problem.Whatever, you cant be very successful withgrowing the business until you know why itdeclined in the first place.From my experience printing companies can beof two type (a) the ones who work on volumesand can provide a cheaper deal or (b) the oneswho work on bespoke jobs and command ahigher price.I have worked with both kinds - asking theformer to print leaflets or flyers for me or askingthe latter to create a 36 page, 210*297mm, 400
gsm glossy brochure.If you really want to grow your business then Iwould suggest firstly, divide your tasks intostrategic and tactical tasks. Let me explain:On the strategic side - call a meeting with yourmanagement or your team and conduct a gapanalysis i.e simply ask two questions - whereare we now? and where do we want to be?link this gap analysis to a ansoff matrix strategyOn the other hand work on some tactical tasks:for example if you have an existing website useit like an online brochure - add all your productdetails, specs, prices and even types of formatsavailable.fish around - look what your competitors aredoing, scan through their websites, call for theirbrochures, see what new discount schemes theyare working on, improve time efficiency andprovide a express service and charge a premium
price for it...do you provide a designing service? if not thenstart, as many companies opt for printingcompanies which provide this service... it allabout one stop shop service..I am not sure which country you are from andwhat is your current position but what i can tellyou is your gap analysis will help you deicde ifyou want to penetrate or diversify... once that isdecided... then its action time... start with yourtactical tasks and try improving all areas of yourbusiness... just remember there is no magicalformula to turn around things... so give it timeand considerable planning...
Thomson pressThomson Press has been in operation for over 40 years and is partof the India Today Group a major multimedia company havinginterests in printing, publishing, internet, television and radio.Thomson Digital is among the leading global service providers inIndia for end-to-end Content Creation, Content Processingand Conversion for Publishers Worldwide. It is part of a 4decades old company which is a diversified group and a knownbrand in the media segments. Our larger group is known as the"India Today Group". The Largest Commercial Printer in South Asia Offers both Printing and Typesetting services Having four Printing Units, two Repro Units and a Typesetting Unit Sales Offices in major Indian and International locations Has won numerous Prestigious Awards Thomson Press is a member of two prestigious world bodies GATF and PIRA.
Businesses Own Brands India today Business Today India today Travel Plus Money TodaySubsidiariesTelevision Today Aaj Tak Network (NSE Headlines ticker - Today TVTODAY.NS) Dilli Aaj Tak owns Tez Meow FM Thomson Press (India) ltd. prints commercial print products and magazines for several contemporaries and Today Competition Network (NSE ticker – TVTODAY.NS). Joint LMI, also Mail Today, aVentures / has several joint Venture Foreign Joint with Daily Brands ventures / Mail (UK) Licensing Harper Collins agreements India, a joint
with venture with prominent Harper Collins brands for Cosmopolitan their Indian Prevention editionsThomson Press has its operations in theNational Capital Region (NCR) andChennai.Type Privately HeldFounded 1975Headquarte New Delhi, Delhi, Indiars Aroon Purie, Chairman,Key People Editor-in-Chief Ashish Bagga, CEO Broadcasting, publishing,Industry InternetEmployees 4,000 (31/03/2008) http://www.indiatodaygroup.Website com
To recognize the customers right to Quality, Services, Timely Deliveryand Cost To ensure maximum satisfaction to the clients To continue to maintain ethical practices, legal, social, personalconscience framework To encourage individual growth to fullest potential To maintain high degree of efficiency and attain international standards Quality through people and technology Discipline and respect for commitment Ownership of organizations goals and interests; Taking accountabilityand responsibility Trust, sensitivity and professional conduct Quality orientation and pursuit of excellence
The training school was started in 1995 with an aimto produce printing professionals to meetrequirements of quality manpower. It provides a oneyear course in printing technology where boththeoretical inputs and practical training is imparted byprofessionals from the industry as per the syllabiprepared by the Thomson Press School governingbody.Students are given a monthly stipend and are absorbed in variousunits on successful completion of the course.Eligibility Graphic Technician Course. Diploma in Printing Technology from recognized Institutes. Machine Operation Course. ITI Certificate in Printing/Fitter/Electrician Trade.Prepress Strength
Capability to handle multiple customers for campaign work. Continuous up-gradation of hardware and software. Fast adaptability to new technology. Regular Training & Technical Workshops for workmen & SupervisoryStaff. 24 hour service. Weekly Kaizen Meeting for continuous improvement. Prepress FacilitiesSome of the major facilities available at our prepress unit are : ScannersA high-end Screen SG8060P MarkII from Dai Nippon Printing to obtainhigher degree of colour accuracy and precision. High End Work StationsHigh end Macs and PCs with original softwares of latest versions. Mostof the Macs are equipped with 6GB RAM and 1TB HDD, where PCs are
having 4GB RAM and 500GB HDD.High end Macs are loaded with latest softwares like Adobe CS5,QXD7.0, freehand11, PitStop10.0 and the processor is QUADCOREINTEL XEON with a speed of 2x2.4GHZ.PC’s are loaded with latest softwares like CS5, QXD7.0,Pagemaker7.0, CorelDraw15.0, freehand11, PitStop10.0 and theprocessor is CORE2DUO 3.16GHZ.Electronic ImpositionPixel Stream Impose 2000 is used to impose the digital files throughsoftware as per job planning and producing single flat as output,resulting in accuracy, swift work and client satisfaction.CTPFrom Dainippon Screen (Model No. PTR 8600S, 8800S and Ultima16000). Total Capacity: 140 Thermal Plates per hour.Digital ProofingWe are equipped with EPSON Stylus10600, 9880, 9600 DigitalProofers. All proofers are capable to print with resolution of 1440dpi. These machines are calibrated with our printing standard.
Colour Management SystemWe are using GMG Color Management Systems. It maintains colourconsistency and standardization throughoutthe Prepress and printing process.Cip 3A digital ink management software, supplying digital ink profiles to theprinting press, cutting down make-ready time.CTP Using Thermal PlatesAn innovative feature that gives first generation dots on plate andproduces sharper images, by exposing directly on to thermal plate.Wide Area NetworkAll our Units/Sales Offices are connected with ISDN/High bandwidthleased lines to transfer digital data from one location to another forbetter service.Proofing
Digital proofing on Epson 9880 & HP Indigo.PressMultiple printing machines - web and sheetfed - gives us theflexibility to offer the most cost effective and efficientprintingsolutions to meet all your needs.Continuous investment in printing technology ensure that the latesttechniques and effects can be employed. The high-speed, hi-techequipment provides you with a fast turnaround and consistentlysuperior quality. Press Strength Multiple printing machines - Web, Sheetfed and Perfectors Most cost effective and efficient printing solution to meet allyour needs.Continuous investment in printing technology to ensure theapplication of latest techniques and effects.The high-speed, hi-tech equipment provides you with a fastturnaround.Consistent superior quality. Press Facilities Sheetfed Presses
The sheet-fed press prints on individual sheets of paper, as opposedto continuous rolls of paper used on web presses. A sheet-fed pressmay consist of multiple print units that each print a different color ofink. Sheet-fed presses come in different sizes. Web PressesWeb printing doesnt use sheets of paper. Instead, large rolls of paperare fed through a printing press. Generally only economic for largeprint runs.PerfectorsA flatbed press for printing both sides of a sheet in one operation Capacities 1.4 million impressions per day on Web 0.75 million impressions per day onSheet fed 0.3 million impressions per day onPerfector
Thomson Press has the latest technology in finishing equipment. To compliment our printing, we haveadequate capacities in cutting, folding, collating and sewing.No matter how large or small your project is, it will receive the highest standard of care and attentionfrom our fully trained finishing operators, ensuring the result you want is achieved. Finishing Services - Please take the cursor over the bullet points to view the details UV Varnish Spot Varnish Aqueous Varnish Film Lamination Hot Foil Stamping Embossing Creasing Die Cutting Index Cutting Gilding Folding
Sewing Saddle Stitching Tipping and Gathering Wire-o Binding Spico Binding Spiral Binding Microperforation Silk Screen PrintingBook Binding StrengthThomson Press has an extensive array of automated binderiesdedicated to provide quality binding services to meet the exactingdemands of our customers. Binding Facilities Periodical/Journal Binding Hardcover and Edition Binding Perfect Binding (paperback)
Saddle Stitch and Loop Stitch Library Binding Leather Binding Sewing Wire-o Binding and Spiral Binding Slipcases Capacities Hardcase 40,000 books per day Perfect bound 150,000 books per day Sewn Books 18750 books per day Saddle Stitch 300,000 books per day QUALITY POLICYThomson Press; pioneer in printing related activities, is committed to provide world classprinting services by Continually upgrading the technology with motivated trained employees Providing services as per customer requirements Continual improvement to achieve customer satisfactionAppropriate, Measurable and Time bound Quality Objectives in line with this policy areestablished at functional levels EHS POLICY
Thomson Press (India) Limited, in the business of Printing, is fully committed to Safety atworkplace and the Protection of Environment & Health of its employees.We shall achieve this by ongoing: Adoption of an Environmental, Health and Safety Management System (EHSMS) in linewith International Standards Compliance with applicable Legal and other requirements Training and Motivation of personnel at work place to enthusiastically adopt EHSMSWe shall continually strive to improve our Environmental, Health & Safety performance byadopting New and Innovative technologies & work practices. ROLE OF QUALITY ASSURANCE Defect PreventionBy Setting Standard:Standard has been set as per the ISO 9001:2008 International Quality Systems and has beencertified from BSI Management Systems India Pvt. Ltd. The standard is being revised from timeto time whenever there is some improvement or modification in the system.Ensuring adherence of the Standard:Periodical audit of the system standard is being conducted to check the compliance of thestandard.Corrective and Preventive Action:Every complaint is being thoroughly investigated by QA for its origin and reason. Necessarycorrective & preventive action is being taken in consultation with the concerned departments. Defect DetectionBy gathering data constantly on occurrence of defect:Every job undergoes thorough inspection by QA before dispatch as per the inspection plan &defect checklist.By sending information about defects to relevant departments:Daily, Weekly & Monthly reports are being sent to the relevant departments and the same arebeing reviewed periodically with the concerned departments
Thomson Press has been in international business for over twodecades and in a focused manner for last 15 years. In line withbecoming global player, Thomson has made substantialinvestments. Essential facilities and equipment in the plant willmake it a cost efficient solution provider, that will match the bestin the world and will be acknowledged by customers abroad.Mumbai which is 50 kms or 31miles from Sea port and 25 kms or16 miles from Airport, offers the advantage of shorter time forimported material as well as export of finished cargo. Thomson Press Plot no. 5/5A, TTC Industrial Area, Thane Belapur Road, Airoli, Navi Mumbai - 400 708Areas Thomson has exported so far:
TRANSIT TIME from Mumbai port to various internationalports Cape Eritrea, Ethiopia,Adelaide Algiers Antwerp Copenhagen Durban town Asmara Djibouti 20-21 28-32 28-3025 days 28-30 days 25 days 24-27 days 14 days days days days Mauritania,Hamburg Johannesburg Kampala Lagos Le Havre Melbourne Mombasa Nouakchott 30-35 28-32 11-1318-23 days 21 days 20-23 days 30-35 days 24 days days days daysMorocco, Sydney UK USACasablanca 17-19 24-2824-28 days 23 days days daysDriven by people, over 1000 employeesThomson Press, is a Peoples Company.The belief that HumanResources are the main drivers of the organization helped usbuild a pool of workforce, which is talented, dynamic, innovative,creative and ready to accept challenges.We at Thomson Press believe in exploring, nurturing and developingthe blooming buds into corporate giants.If you have the drive for being the BEST then come and join handswith the leader in Printing Technology.
Fresh recruits in the company are taken under a set of CorporateTraining SchemesEquipmentsReproInputDrum Scanner (Screen SG8060P Mark II, S3900) 2Flatbed Scanner (Eversmart Supreme, 4CEZANNE, Umax Astra 2200, Smart 342)Digital Camera 1Copy Dot Scanner (Renaissance II, Renaissance II Plus) 2printingWeb Oset (Heat Set)Goss M 600D (5/5c, Width 38" & Cut Off 22.75") 1Mitsubishi Lithopia 2 web (5/5c or 2/2c, Width 32.7" & Cut Off19.7") 1EQUIPMENTLIST
DESCRIPTION QUANTITYHarris NCH 400 (5/5c, Two Reel Stand, Width 36" & Cut Off22.75") 1, etcBindingFoldingShoei Star SPK 66-4 KTL (23.6") 3Shoei Star SPB 82-4 KTL (23.6") 5Rollem CD Inlay Fabrication Machine (28" x 40") 1Stahl Folding Machine type RF-78 (30.7") 1Stahl Folding Machine - Buckel folder (32.28”) 1Since its earliest days, Thomson Digital has been driven to breaknew grounds in more ways than one. Moving up the value chain wasa natural outcome of the outstanding efforts of the team thatenvisioned the future of technology in providing publishing solutions.We have successfully transitioned client processes with unmatchedpace & perfection and have thus become instrumental in theirproductivities and cost cuts.
Starting with conventional composition services, Thomson Digital hasstrategically branched out into offering extended services andforayed into new segments. The expansion has always been wellthought out with an intention to allow the publishers to concentrateon their core activities. In addition to the traditional typesettingservices that service providers have been offering, Thomson Digitalcurrently offers the following niche services to publishers worldwide: Editorial services Content creation for school curriculum & children books Illustration creation Specialised medical illustrations Design services e-learning services Multimedia services Image research and acquisition Software development
Multilingual publishing servicesOur clients are serviced out of India from two units in the NationalCapital Region of Delhi and one in Chennai. A team of about 1500people makes us one of the largest specialist teams in the industrywith our offices all over the globe, which provide local coordination.Thomson Digital also has overseas production Facility and itsfourth unit in Mauritius for French language. This is strategicallybased out of Mauritius to tap into the Frenchlanguage resources available in the country.This unit also serves as a Business Continuity and DisasterRecovery site for the organization.
CultureOur people are passionate, motivated and proud of their own work.They are dedicated, stable and reliable because the company culturestrictly upholds and fulfills its employees’ needs. They are thepowerful weapons to win our business battles. They are more thanjust employees and we view our employees as valuable competitiveassets.Life at TD is buzzing with activities such as sports, cultural events,quizzes and competitions. The entire TD family dynamicallyparticipates in these activities.What sets TD apart is the ability to compete, ability to deliver a high– quality product faster and more cost effectively, professionalism,communication, attention to detail, support, encouragement,dedication, passion and mutual respect.“Our organizational culture is not totally focused on creation ofwealth but building a sound organization."
Composition & prepressOur services involve converting raw, unformatted information ofmultiple types into a consistent, defined, and directly publishabledocument format using customer-defined rules.We also provide value additions such as artwork and tableresizing and touch-up, scanning and fresh design and localizationof content.Blending technology with skills honed by more than four decadesof specialization in composing pages for the best names inpublishing fraternity, over an array of specialization like: School Education Childrens Books Higher Education Vocational Fiction Professional/Trade Religious/Technological SSTM
Project management’Experience Infused with fresh energies makes a good combinationfor effective communication and successful project management atThomson Digital.
Our state of the art DesignStudio is a rich blend ofcreativity and technology. Theexpertise of our resources isvisible in the fact that today weare one of the most admired artcreators.Thomson Digital takesimmense pride in creating aworld of priceless designs withan everlasting impression.From visualizing the layout toconceptualizing the Prototype,our dedicated and highly
skilled in-house team of Designers, Illustrators and Image Research specialists work together to provide par excellence services.Image research
The skilled team at Thomson Digital researches and finds the right photooptions based on briefs, content, audience profile and other inputs. Theseoptions are provided to authors and production editors as a “light box” tochoose from.Our inhouse-created Web interface facilitates and smoothens the entireprocess of uploading image options and receiving approvals/commentsfrom our clients.The volume agreements we have with all major image banks enable us topass on to our clients substantial discounts on listed prices for them toreap the financial benefit. Conversion & digitization for consumers
Our conversion team is well equipped to handle volumes andlarge projects in converting one form of data to another. Thisteam works hand in glove with the software team and we are theproud developers of proprietary workflows and processes, real-time validators and parsers.We use contemporary digitization and indexing techniques tomeet the customer expectations for both web and printdeliverables. Our team has a successful track record of digitizingcomplex multi-colour projects ensuring fidelity to the original.Our qualified team and state of the art infrastructure ensurescustomer satisfaction and retention.Some of the benefits of our services are:A large pool of Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) in various academicdisciplines, with post-graduate level qualifications, armed withinformed understanding of the content to analyze, organize,abstract and metatag dataSoftware tools developed by in-house team which automate data-conversion into web-ready electronic formats using SGML, XML, etcand print ready formats using TeX, Adobe, 3B2, Quark, etc.Data archiving and updating services with multi-location servers anddata back-ups for complete redundancyTranslation services, and high quality print-on-demand services forhardcopy requestsHigh speed and high quality OCR scanning and digital artwork
Quality We are an ISO 9001:2008 (Quality Management System) and ISO 27001:2005 (Information Security Management System) certified company, where qualified processes and systems are adhered to, with focus on their constant enrichment.The company has a four-tier Quality Management Structure:Core Production - Right The First Time (RTFT) is a practiced way of life at Thomson. HereKaizen practices and Quality Circle forums enable grass-root-level participation and build aculture of cooperation and positive thinking for performance and quality improvement. Openupward communication is encouraged through Suggestion Schemes.In-process Quality Control or Peer Review – Produced output is validated against product-specific requirements through these measures. Process Quality - Process study, analysis of data, and process improvement are done using Statistical Quality Control tools. Corporate Quality - Gap Analysis audits are conducted to review compliance with the standards and procedures to be followed. The Deming Cycle of Plan-Do- Check-Act is followed for standardization and
improvement.Rewards & Recognition for the bestperformers - groups and individuals - isperiodically organized. We have also inbuilt Six Sigma data-driven methodology for process improvements and as a pioneer in this, we embarked on our journey of achieving Six Sigma in March 2001. For us at Thomson, process quality certifications are just one of many things. Quality at Thomson emanates from everything we do – our products, our services, our processes, our structure, our attitude, our culture, and our people.Resources/ infrastructure partThomson digital has multiple lease lines for the smooth andcontinuous functioning. This insures against any breakdown andsupport timely upload and download of data without any time loss.We also have our own FTP server based locally in our datacentersand in Chicago (US) datacenter for quicker accessibility, which allowseasy access to information round the clock.
Backup facilityWe have a dedicated server for backup at the main production unit. These backups are maintained ondaily/ weekly/ monthly basis. This allows easy retrieval of data. Along side a backup is also maintainedon an additional server, which doubly ensures the backup security. Dedicated high bandwidth inter unit connectivity through owned OFC cable connectivity Real time data backup with 24 – 48 hrs disaster recovery plans Offshore data storage facilitiesAutomatically updated anti virus software for all nodes and servers on hourly basisSecurityWe have strict security and safeguards, and procedures for unauthorized access to customer’s data.Safety of the customer’s data is of prime importance to us. At Thomson digital we are able to maintainthe required checks, as we are located in a Regulated zone and have restricted materials movement.Our business units also plan to attain the ISMS certification. Physical Security is through the stringent checks by trained security guards, round the clock. ISMS: ISO 27001: We hold ISMS ISO 27001:2005 and comply with regulatory requirements for Digital Data Processing and Allied Services Disaster Recovery Plan is in place and circulated to relevant people.Closely monitored and restricted data handling by authorized personnel
PeopleThomson Digital has one of the largest pools of more than 1500 skilled, dedicated, and motivated and technicallyqualified workforce.Printing Industry Marketing Strategy...Printing Industry Marketing Strategy -How many at the latest IPEX asked a fellow printer for a business card and got the age-old reply, "too busyto print our own cards"? Printers, marketing is the key in this economy and economic environment. Readonward to see why and oh, yes, please print some business cards...Marketing Strategy for SuccessAll organisations in the Printing Industry need aMarketing Strategy to be successful.Marketing is the process of planning and executing the development, pricing, promotion and distribution ofproducts and services to targeted customers. Using this standard everyone in your organisation is ultimately
involved in marketing in some way, not just some narrowly defined "marketing department."Marketing-oriented organisations focus like a laser beam on customer needs and wants. They anticipatedemand. They enlarge demand through promotions and advertising. Then they satisfy that demand.Unfortunately, too many companies either do not understand this basic principle or lack the resolve to seetheir strategies through to completion. In fact, many businesses start thinking about marketing campaignsonly after sales have begun to sag.Other reasons why marketing plans fail:No sense of the future. Successful marketing is an `investment` in your organisations future. Be creative.Focus on new opportunities. Always think of new ways to enhance exposure for your product.No measurement of results. Like any other initiative, marketing projects must be tested and measured. Tomeasure results, assign someone to capture sales and customer information and give them access to allrevenue and expense data. Once results are measured, analyse them and share them throughout theorganisation. Then spend money on what generates the best return.Too much interference. Some CEOs approve a marketing plan, then insist on constantly makingadjustments. Sometimes, the best approach is to wait until marketing efforts can be suitably measured andthen fine-tune the plan. Constant meddling only distorts results and demoralises the people in charge ofdriving the campaign.For some printing industry organisations, maintaining a full-blown marketing department may be too costlyand impractical to justify itself. One option in these circumstances is hiring a `professional` marketingconsultant to ensure that your product meets customer demands the way it should.We suggest the following to ensure getting the most out of a marketing consultant:Start with clear goals. Define what you want from him or her, and `do not` hold things back. Keep inmind that no one understands your companys culture or history as thoroughly as you do. Offer all the detailsyou can so the consultant has more to work with.Do not leave the consultant dangling. The marketing consultant you hire is a technical expert; he orshe uses specialised tools to solve the problems you know intimately from your day-to-day businessdealings. If you take the time to work together, youll see better results than if the consultant is left trying tofigure out everything on his or her own.Marketing StrategyEffective marketing doesnt come naturally to most businesses.When reaching out to customers, many companies describe what the product/service is, explain theirproduct better, and then explain to the customer why they should buy it. This is also how most salespeoplemake sales presentations. All too often, however, they leave out the part about how the product benefits thecustomer. But the only time the customer is ever interested is when you tell him how the product will improvehis life.Of course, its impossible to highlight your products/service benefits if you do not know what your customerswant. Thats where market research comes in.Step one in market research is determining what you genuinely need to find out. Are you considering
entering a new market? A new market area? A new product line mix? The kind of information youre after willinfluence the type of research you want to do.Other key questions: Whats the current size of the market? How fast is it growing? How can we hope to reach it? Can the market be segmented into targeted customer groups? What makesour product distinctive among others in the marketplace? What types of people buy our product or service? Whats most important to buyers when choosing a product (price, quality, delivery time, etc.)? What do customers like about our competitors products that were not offering?The Marketing PlanThe best marketing plans always focus on the customer; especially for print-shops. Therefore, the planshould be organised to address specific questions: What does the customer really need? Where do they want to buy it? How do they want to buy it? How much are they willing to pay?A solid marketing communications strategy is also crucial as well. Do you know what your target customersread and listen to? What are the best ways to get their attention? This aspect of the plan should addressyour organisations promotional goals ("promotions" include everything from advertising to public relations).Other key questions: How can you communicate more about your products/service specific benefts? i How much money are you willing to spend to get your message across? What media would work best for your specific product? How will you evaluate the results of your promotional efforts?Plan ambitiously but be realistic about your objectives. Consider what you hope to accomplish in terms ofwhat can be realistically achieved. Ask yourself: How can we want to set ourselves apart from our competition? By price? Product benefits? Otherattributes? Is our ultimate goal improving sales of a speci ic product or service or do we want to focus on generating fmore qualified leads? Is customer retention our real objective?
General statements like "Were committed to getting more business" or "We want to boost sales" areessentially meaningless. Ask questions in order to clarify your goals. Keep working on your answers untilyouve identified your most important objectives.Customer FocusTo think like your print-buying customers, your company must encourage a customer-oriented culture. Yourdecision-making process should include a mechanism for collecting and understanding customer input.Before you design, test and sell your product/service, make sure youve gathered, interpreted andsynthesised all the customer information you can find. That way, youre not making the product in a vacuum,but backed up instead by solid data.Where does this information come from? Below are several fundamental sources:Customer complaints. Look at complaints your business has received over the past few weeks andmonths. Does your management team seriously examine whats behind these complaints? Does the teamoffer solutions to reduce the number of complaints?Customer surveys. This is still considered among the most effective methods for collecting reliable,objective data about your customers.Industry trends. Study patterns in your industry. Read trade publications. Monitor new trends andapproaches to customer care. Especially in the printing industry is this vital.Face to face contact. Do you know -- really know -- how your customers buy your products and exactlywhat they do with them? Nothing beats getting out of the office and meeting with customers directly.Market research offers crucial information about customers buying habits, needs, preferences and opinions.Below are five basic methods used by most businesses:Survey. With a well-designed questionnaire, you can evaluate a sample group that represents your targetmarket. (The greater the sample, the more trustworthy are the results.) One-to-one surveys -- usuallyconducted in high-traffic areas like shopping malls -- offer an opportunity to distribute samples of yourproduct and gather immediate feedback.Focus groups. In this format, a trained facilitator uses a scripted series of questions to lead a discussionamong a group of selected individuals. These sessions are held in a "neutral" location (often at a place withvideotaping equipment and an observation room with one-way mirrors).Personal interviews. This method is more concentrated than surveys, and while the results arentstatistically reliable, they can yield valuable insights into customer buying habits. They also unearthunexpected concerns that may lead to improvements in customer service or product design and distribution.Field trials. In this situation, the company places a new product in selected outlets to test customerresponse under authentic selling conditions. Its a valuable opportunity to modify product or packagingbefore final rollout.The best customer benefit is worth more than all of your products features combined. Do you know howyour product/service benefits your customers? This should always be the focus for your marketingcampaigns.To keep that goal in sharp focus, We suggest asking these questions:
How do our customers profit from using our product? How much money does it save for our customers? How much money can it earn for our customers? Does our product have built in intangible benefits? Is there a way to quantify these intangibles? -"Identify the benefits your customers get from your product/service and then make those the centrepiece ofyour companys message."The CEO and MarketingA marketing-oriented print CEO works hard at intimately understanding the customers needs. Broadlyspeaking, these needs fall into three categories: How to increase productivity How to reduce the cost of doing business How to improve their competitive statusThe CEO is -- or should be -- the chief marketing officer. He or she should avoid getting stuck in a product-thing mentality that asks, What are our customers buying from us? Why should they buy from me instead ofmy competition? Instead, the question should be: What value or benefits do my products/service provide?Thats the only question that truly matters.CEOs spend a substantial amount of time out in the field, meeting with customers and prospects -- "not forthe purpose of selling, but to better understand their needs, wants and demands. CEOs are uniquelyequipped to do this. They know their own business, so theyll likely understand what their business can do toaddress customers issues. Many CEOs think this is what theyve hired salespeople to do, but in the 8 yearsIve been advising CEOs, every single one has said its the best thing theyve ever done.Above all, the CEO has the power and influence to ensure that marketing is considered a primary functionwithin the organisation. Do not look at marketing efforts as an expense. Sales is an expense. Marketing isan `investment` in your companys future. Do everything possible to get the best people involved inmarketing activities and see that this ethic is incorporated into the culture as a whole.Direct MarketingDirect marketing is a system by which a business communicates directly with targeted groups of customersin order to generate a response and/or conduct a transaction. Most printers provide a lot of these marketingservices to their customers but forget to use them themselves! Despite changes in technology affectingvirtually all aspects of marketing today, direct marketing remains one of the most measurable and cost-effective ways to sell products and services.Should your company include direct marketing in its promotional mix? Here are the guidelines:Your primary, or significant, method of distributing your product is through the mail or directly toyour customers. The key to doing this effectively is acquiring and maintaining an accurate database of
targeted customers. The most successful direct marketing businesses make having excellent databases anumber-one priority.Your product offers a variety of benefits. Trying to convey multiple product benefits in a print orelectronic medium can result in confusion for your customers. Instead, a well-composed direct mail lettercan communicate all of these benefits and announce special promotions like discounts or contests.Your product is expensive. Again, a direct mail letter offers greater opportunity to expand your productsappeal (and convince potential customers to spend a little extra) than the limited space of advertising.E-mail marketing has become an increasingly valuable form of direct mail. E-mail ads are a greatsupplement to traditional methods, primarily for three reasons: They are, in essence, free. They can be changed quickly. They arent confined in shape or length.other tips include: Know whom youre talking to. One way to make your e -mail message stand out from the flood of others isby speaking to your customers in their own language. Through the use of industry buzzwords, youdemonstrate that you know who they are, what they need and what you can offer them. Include a meaningful offer. Customers are more likely to respond when theyre offered something free (anindustry "white paper," for example, or free seminar). Other eye-catching offers include coupons fordiscounts, free shipping, reward or points program. Do not overdo it! Because of its ease of use, you could fall prey to sending "exciting" e-mail messagesevery day or many times a week. Thats overload. A cogent, well-designed e-mail message sent once (or, atmost, a few times) is preferable. And only send it when you have something worthwhile to share. Like thispiece on Marketing Strategy."Direct response" marketing invites the customer to take action by: Placing an offer directly in front of the customer Asking the customer for additional information or to make the decision to buy Tracking customer response in order to measure the return on you marketing investment rAll organisations will benefit from a Marketing Strategy by increasing their `bottom-line`, so visit theknowledge bank at http://www.cavendish-mr.org.uk for powerful products and services to help youbecome more successful.For a free comprehensive report on the `Challenges for the Printing Industry` email your requestto email@example.comDo your customers need me to share with them skills and experience to raise their `bottom-line`? Pleasegive me a call.Its all about the Printing Industry Marketing Strategy...
Heidelberg – A Strategy forSucceeding in Digital PrintingBy Andrew TributePublished: February 23, 2011[Special commentary on the news that Heidelberg and Ricoh announce global strategiccooperation]When Bernhard Schreier, the Chairman and CEO of Heidelberg Druckmaschinen AG announced atIPEX last year that Heidelberg would be re-entering the digital printing market through analliance with a partner organization, I felt somewhat apprehensive as to just what sort ofagreement this would be, or even if such an agreement on Heidelbergs terms would be possible.I know that I, and many others in the analyst community were somewhat dubious if such anagreement would be possible with a suitable partner, and also if Heidelberg really understood thedigital market they planned to re-enter. Mr. Shiro Kondo (left), Ricoh CEO and Mr. Bernhard Schreier (right), Heidelberg CEOOne has to look back at the previous time that Heidelberg was in the digital market. This waswhen they partnered with Kodak to develop the Nexpress. Heidelberg brought its knowledge of
offset printing and heavy engineering and produced the Nexpress 2100 that utilized imaging andtoner technology from Kodak in a printing platform developed and engineered by Heidelberg.While the Nexpress was a great imaging engine it was greatly over engineered with amanufacturing cost that was around the targeted planned sales price. The product also did not fitthe needs of the market in that it could not connect to inline finishing systems nor could it runmore than one substrate at a time. It was not suited to the traditional Heidelberg customer inbeing too expensive and with too great a duty cycle. It was in fact a typical engineering drivenrather than market driven product. Since the product was taken over by Kodak they haverectified through re-engineering most of the initial problems with the Nexpress, and it is now ahighly competitive product line.I was therefore delighted to find that Heidelbergs re-entry into digital printing is via a marketdriven approach. The company has carried out a major amount of research into the commercialprinting market and has looked at all the different segments of the market to ascertain the areawhere it is most likely to succeed in providing a suitable package for the substantial Heidelbergworldwide user base. In this it is not going head to head in the "professional" or "high-volume"digital markets, nor does it plan to compete in the highly competitive office market. The marketHeidelberg is targeting is the "Value" segment of the market. This is the area where digitalpresses would have a speed from 60 up to 90 A4/Letter pages per minute with a monthly targetvolume between 80,000 up to 300,000 pages/month or even more and with a price of €100,000.This market therefore does not include the presses from HP Indigo, the Xerox iGen4 and800/1000 presses, the Canon ImagePress 7010, and the Kodak Nexpress and Xeikon presses.Heidelbergs requirements in entering this market are for the press to conform to the Valuesegment specification, but also to have a quality that is the equivalent of that available in four-color offset and "Performance" digital printing segment. The other unique selling point of theHeidelberg digital printing offering is that while the press may be sold separately, it is ideallyconfigured as a package with the Heidelberg Speedmaster 52 Anicolor short run offset press.Both presses would be driven from the same color management system to give comparable coloroutput. Heidelberg has analyzed the short run color market and found that the true economics ofdigital printing show a crossover point of digital and the Anicolor at around 200 - 300 pages.They see that when both the digital and Anicolor presses are driven from the same Prinectworkflow system that the true economics of every job can be ascertained prior to printing,allowing the printing company to choose the best system for the job.Now this may sound all very good but how will it work in reality. Well I think it is the idealsolution for the small and medium sized printer entering the digital field and is in fact somethingI have been suggesting for many years. A key factor however in this is quality and can the digitaland offset presses give the same quality of work. With a few exceptions, such as working withsome special substrates, they can. The work I have seen produced off the Heidelberg digitalpress during an analyst meeting end of December 2010 was exceptional and I could not easily
tell the difference with offset printing. What was also significant was I could not tell thedifference between the Heidelberg digital press output and from the same output produced by anHP Indigo customer on one of the latest HP Indigo presses. This is the press that is that has setthe standard for digital printing quality and which cost three to four times the cost of theHeidelberg press while having a lower pages per minute output. Ricoh Pro C901 Graphic Arts EditionI think Heidelberg in choosing Ricoh as its partner for re-entry into the digital printing businesshas been a very astute and excellent decision. The Ricoh C901 Graphic Arts Edition press is anexcellent press that is really challenging the established players in the market for both speed andquality. While Ricoh has a great distribution channel into the enterprise and office markets forboth sheet fed and continuous feed printers and presses, it has a limited presence in commercialprinting. This provides a great opportunity for Heidelberg to use its worldwide distribution as theleading supplier in the commercial printing industry to really establish itself as a key digitalplayer. Heidelberg will also move slowly into the market as it develops its expertise andofferings. It is not aiming at the specialized personalization markets of sophisticated direct mailleaving these to other suppliers, but it will no doubt offer software to allow its customers tohandle personalization of output. Initially it will partner with Ricoh for service while it builds upexpertise in key markets. It will however adopt the usual digital printing practice of clickcharging for prints, and will provide Saphira toner for the presses.The agreement with Ricoh should not however just be looked at for just the initial offering.Heidelberg and Ricoh see this as a long term partnering agreement where Heidelberg will work
with Ricoh on the development of future presses to expand the product range, perhapsincorporating Heidelbergs expertise in paper handling and color control. One must also lookahead to think what may happen. Ricoh is a key player through Ricoh Infoprint in the high-speedcontinuous feed market. This currently uses the Screen Truepress Jet520 engines, but one mustexpect that Ricoh, through its Hitachi Printing Systems division is developing its own inkjet printengines. I could envisage that such engines could be sold through Heidelberg into the graphicarts markets for publishing applications. One must also look at what Heidelberg could do forRicoh. Heidelberg is a leading supplier of finishing systems for commercial printing, but makesnothing at this stage for digital print finishing. I could see that if Heidelberg moves intocontinuous feed inkjet printing with Ricoh that it could become a key supplier of finishingsystems for this market.While the big news is that Heidelberg is making a major move to re-establish itself in thecommercial digital printing market, one must not forget that the company is already operating inthe continuous feed inkjet market through its Linoprint division. This provides specializedsystems for packaging applications using UV curable inks. There are plans to expand theLinoprint product line to possibly move into other areas, and this would expand Heidelbergs rolein digital printing.Overall I am pleased to say I have been delighted to see the change in role of Heidelberg, toswitch from being an engineering driven company to a market driven company. I like thestrategy they are adopting and think the partnership with Ricoh gives them great opportunitiesfor the future. I think that it shows that offset and digital printing work together, and that offsethas a major part to play in the future of the industry.