Sep 11, 2012
Reaching and communicating with consumers used to be easy, or at least simpler. At one time, 80% of the U.S. population could be reached through three major network television channels. Today, it would take more than 200 television channels to reach that same audience. The prevalence of the Internet and rapid technological advancements (e.g., imaging, mobile, bandwidth, processing speeds) have dramatically changed the communications landscape over the past decade.
The printing industry is in the midst of a rapid evolution. Technology is expanding the number of offline and online media channels that consumers are prompted to engage with. Consumers are changing their behaviors in terms of media and communication, and their preferences are forcing businesses across all industries to make adjustments in how they interact with customers and prospects. Because print is now just one of many media channels that consumers are accessing, the value and role of print is changing.
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Jul 9, 2012
Quick response (QR) codes have come a long way from their invention in 1994 by Denso Wave company.Â The QR code originated as a tool for tracking automotive manufacturing parts in Japan, and has risen to prominence in marketing and advertising campaigns in 2011. The ability for QR codes to be read on mobile devices has helped with increasing its popularity in today’s tech-savvy society. Consumers, marketers, and print service providers are beginning to become more aware of this technology by adopting it into their existing operations. As consumers, we often times see QR codes in many areas of our daily lives.Â The codes can be seen on our monthly statements encouraging customers to take action, in printed magazines to deliver further information, and on retail packaging for brands that want to engage with customers.
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Jun 12, 2012
The 2012 HOW Design Live, an event sponsored by HOW magazine held this year in Boston from June 21-25th, is an event that service providers should consider attending. It’s one of the largest gatherings of designers, freelancers, creative team managers, and other creative professionals in the country. The creative community, according to the 48th Annual Print Survey conducted by Graphic Design USA, remains central to the process of buying print and specifying paper. In addition, these professionals play a pivotal role in shaping cross media campaigns. As more and more service providers bring to market solutions that integrate print and online media channels, connecting with the design community should be a priority.
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Mar 8, 2012
Now that the speculation frenzy has been relieved with Apple’s introduction of the new iPad yesterday, I’ll give my perspective on what it means for the market. The short answer is that if you are a publisher, content producer, advertiser, marketing services provider or Google, it’s all good. If you are a printing company or equipment supplier with no presence in digital media, it’s all bad.
Aug 12, 2011
InfoTrends is frequently asked to provide quotes and data for leading news outlets. Here are just some of the recent stories that InfoTrends information has been featured in: Read more »
Aug 2, 2011
The long-discussed move from offering only print to providing a host of media options backed by a solid marketing strategy is firmly taking hold in the market. This assertion is reflected in InfoTrends’ newly released study entitled The Evolution of the Cross-Media Marketing Services Provider. This research involved a survey of 285 print service providers (PSPs) and 63 in-plant organizations, and one-on-one interviews with close to 30 firms that have successfully made the cross-media transition. The goal of the study was to understand the current state of the transition, the benefits gained and challenges faced in making the move, best practices of early adopters, and organizational modifications required to succeed in offering cross-media marketing services.
The study revealed that successfully moving into cross-media marketing demands many levels of organizational change. Organizations must establish new marketing approaches, sales models, pricing strategies, and compensation practices for these new value-added capabilities. They need to determine the equipment and software investments that are required for delivering these services. They must also gain a solid understanding of the next phase in the cross-media and marketing services evolution. How will tomorrow’s market embrace print, online, social, mobile, and whatever media comes next?
One of the overarching trends of our research was that PSPs understand the value of offering cross-media marketing services, and they are moving in that direction. Meanwhile, the in-plant market is struggling. Close to 60% of PSPs reported offering cross-media services, compared to 38% of in-plant respondents. Furthermore, over 40% of in-plants had no plans to offer cross-media marketing services.
Figure 1: Do you offer cross-media marketing services?
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Apr 5, 2011
I attended the first day of the Publishing Business Conference and Expo held at the Marriott Marquis in New York City. This long running event (years ago known as Book Tech Expo), included a wide range of speakers covering the magazine and book publishing industry, around 40 exhibitors, and some 2,500 attendees according to the event organizer North American Publishing Company (NAPCO).
While many publishers are still trying to get their legs under them after the brutal recession and on-going demise of traditional business models, I found the presentations this year were quite upbeat with common themes including marketing as a service, mobility, iPads, social media, and cross media. Read more »
Mar 28, 2011
ON DEMAND 2011 and info360 (formerly the AIIM event) wrapped up last week in Washington, DC at the Walter E. Conference Center. With the shows being co-located, acquisitions in the software space, and enterprise and production becoming more closely associated, ON DEMAND attendees appeared to spend time on both sides of the show floor (exploring the broader scope of software solutions currently available). While these lines continue to blur, there were a number of relevant announcements and developments at ON DEMAND pointing toward distinct trends in production software. Read more »
Oct 4, 2010
Software continues to play an integral role in print and cross-media production. Conventional wisdom is shifting from “throwing software at it” to try and solve problems in production environments to “strategy-based” software deployment. Numerous times we have seen companies play a reactive role when it comes to software; a client has a need not currently met by a company’s existing software arsenal, forcing them to quickly come up with a solution through investment or custom development. While this approach solves an immediate issue for a particular client, larger opportunities and long-term implications can be missed.
While there are no doubt many challenges service providers still face in today’s economy, many businesses are anxious to tackle initiatives they may have been forced to put on the back-burner in the past year or two; these initiatives may include automating workflow to increase efficiency, extending capabilities to the Web with e-commerce, and offering new services. Software is a key enabler for many of these initiatives, and service providers need to take a more proactive approach to choosing a vendor, product, and ultimately a partner that can help meet strategic goals. Read more »
Sep 28, 2010
Recent trade shows illuminated an emerging theme around software and services targeted at the new cross-media opportunity. The cloud is in, and Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solutions are popping up everywhere. Why? The recent economic downturn–coupled with the fast-paced, capital-intense nature of technology adoption–has created huge demand for low-cost and easy-to-use IT solutions.
In 1965, Intel Co-Founder Gordon Moore established Moore’s law, which states that data density doubles every 18 months. We can extend Moore’s theory across many information technologies. For example, mass storage technology and bandwidth are just a couple of other technologies that are rapidly coming down in cost and exponentially increasing in capacity. Technology is moving at an incredibly rapid pace, and it is now difficult to stay on the leading edge when acquiring new hardware and software solutions. Furthermore, incorporating new technologies into your infrastructure and successfully monetizing the benefits of the acquisition and implementation cost in a timeframe that will yield an acceptable return has become difficult (if not impossible) for some companies. Read more »