DIGITAL digestMarch 2010
2010 AppForum Focused on Growth
LAS VEGAS—More than 350 digital printing professionals recently attended PODi's 2010 AppForum. "Attendance was up almost 20 percent from the 2009 conference, an excellent indicator of the health of the digital printing industry," observed Rab Govil, PODi president and CEO of Caslon, the event organizer.
According to real-time, interactive polling done during the conference, more than 66 percent of attendees saw significant growth in digital printing, even in 2009's tough business climate. Almost 20 percent garnered increases of more than 25 percent, while only 4 percent saw their offset printing revenues grow by more than 25 percent.
Govil also addressed the growth in digital printing during his keynote presentation, noting that offset printing still accounts for the vast majority of pages produced. Transferring just 25 percent of offset pages to digital would lead to 125 percent growth in the digital printing market, he says.
Using the healthcare segment in his example, Govil discussed the process of analyzing a growing industry to identify the most promising and profitable opportunities. He cited research that found patients only retain 50 percent of the information they are given at a clinic, and half of what they can recall is remembered incorrectly. Printed communications—especially personalized ones—can help to eliminate unnecessary care, improve outcomes for patients and increase efficiency, in addition to being favored in HIPPA regulations, Govil adds.
Next up were brief case studies of the top 2010 PODi Best Practices Award winners. The best practice winners include:
• Marketing Resource Center Category—Move Inc. and QuantumDigital Inc. produced a real estate agent lead-generation mailer that achieved a 3 percent average response rate.
• Direct Marketing Category—Girl Scouts Arizona Cactus Pine Council and Allegra Print & Imaging collaborated on a "Support the Sash Campaign" donation campaign that had an 8.2 percent total response rate.
• Self-Promotion Category—OTC Systems is a marketing portal for automotive dealerships that produced a cross-media promotion campaign for its service, which achieved a 23 percent response rate and 11 percent conversion rate.
Breakout sessions were offered throughout both days in four tracks: sales and business strategies, direct marketing, leading-edge applications and print-on-demand. The first day ended with time to visit the Vendor Fair, featuring more than 20 exhibitors, followed by a lively "Innovations that Drive Print" general session. Barb Pellow of InfoTrends moderated this panel discussion featuring companies already exploiting new marketing opportunities, including QR codes, augmented reality, social media and mobile/SMS channels.
Among the highlights of the second day was the "Stepping into the Shoes of the Marketing Executive" breakout session, presented by Katie Gilstrap, senior vice president and director of marketing at First Market Bank. Attendees enjoyed her first-hand view of what clients are looking for from their service providers. It wasn't surprising that the characteristics Gilstrap stressed were responsiveness, dependability and, of course, cost-effectiveness.
OKI Steps Up to Production Systems
MOUNT LAUREL, NJ—Building on its standing in the office products market, OKI Data Americas recently unveiled several new color printers for the graphic arts market. The new proColor series, being marketed under the OKI Printing Solutions brand, printer line is designed for color-critical applications.
OKI has long been a supplier of LED technology to other graphic arts equipment vendors. Using its own imaging technology gives the company more flexibility to develop products scaled to different widths or color requirements, asserts Richard Egert, general manager of OKI Data Americas' Strategic Technology Provider Business Group.
According to Egert, the running costs of the proColor machines have been reduced so they can compete in the graphic arts space. In all, the company introduced five OKI-branded devices offering high-definition color printing:
• pro910, a cutsheet, tabloid model that prints 31 pages per minute (ppm) color/36 ppm monochrome, and that handles paper stock up to 330 gsm, including magnetic media and static cling materials.
• pro930 adds Pantone calibration and embedded EFI Fiery and SmartRIP technology for consistent, accurate color matching.
• pro900DP, a digital envelope press version that outputs variable data on a range of media. Its high-capacity lift holds up to 4,000 sheets of 20-lb. bond paper and boosts the print speed to 36 ppm color/40 ppm monochrome.
• pro510DW, a web press that prints up to 30 fpm and handles a maximum 12.9˝ wide by 2,500-ft. long roll of stock, including paper, labels and various tag stocks. Automatic web cutting and reloading between jobs eliminates operator intervention.
• pro810, an entry-level, cutsheet model rated at 30 ppm color/32 ppm monochrome is positioned as an alternative to engineering plotters for color proofing.
Egert also reported that OKI is talking with finishing vendors to develop inexpensive in-line and off-line folding solutions for these products.
Kodak's Users Meeting Is Coming Home
ROCHESTER, NY—To mark its 15th anniversary, the 2010 Graphic Users Association (GUA) North American Conference will be held April 11-14 at the event's birthplace: in the heart of downtown Vancouver. The conference's theme will be "U never stop growing your knowledge, your business, your network, your career." It is sponsored by Kodak.
"As with our 2009 conference, the economy is the headline of the day. The 2010 GUA Conference will be hosting sessions, roundtable discussions and GUA classes on how to succeed and do more with less," says Tom Clifford, GUA president. "This year's GUA University Classes will focus on integrating Kodak solutions as we all work to reduce costs and increase production efficiencies."
For more information about the conference, visit www.gua2010.com.
InterACT! Cross-Media Conference Unveiled
Weymouth, MA/PHILADELPHIA—InfoTrends and North American Publishing Co. (NAPCO), the publisher of Printing Impressions and Target Marketing magazines, are launching InterACT!, an educational forum for marketers, brand owners and service providers that will address cross-media direct marketing opportunities and strategies. The event is scheduled for Aug. 10-11 at the Crowne Plaza Chicago O'Hare in Rosemont, IL.
"InterACT! will be a break-through event offering both thought leadership on and ground-level tactics for integrating print, online, mobile and social media to deliver interactive marketing campaigns that drive business results," says Peggy Hatch, president of the Target Marketing Group at NAPCO.
InfoTrends' President Jeff Hayes adds, "Our objective with InterACT! is to help marketers and service providers leverage print, online and mobile marketing programs to stimulate customer interaction and grow their businesses."
The two-day program will offer two tracks:
• "How Marketers are Making Interactive Media Campaigns Work" will focus on getting and keeping an interactive conversation going with customers.
• "Implementing New Media Solutions…Requirements for Success" will review the essential technology components for implementing interactive campaigns.
In addition to the educational sessions, the Technology & Services Showcase will feature the latest hardware, software and services available to make cross-media communications a reality.
For more information on the event, visit www.interactconference.net.
EFI Connect Program is Announced
FOSTER CITY, CA—Robert Tapella, the nation's 25th Public Printer and CEO of the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO), will be the lead-off speaker at EFI's 11th annual Connect users conference, scheduled to take place April 18-21 at the Wynn Las Vegas. Tapella will share his industry insights gained from overseeing production and distribution of information products and services for all three branches of the federal government.
Also slated to address the group is Joan Davidson, group president of Sheridan Publications Services at The Sheridan Group. Davidson will share her wealth of knowledge on operational efficiency improvements.
Completing the schedule (available at www.efi.com/connect) are more than 120 breakout sessions.
This year's conference will also feature the first-annual Connect Auction, a live auction held during the sponsors' appreciation reception on April 19. It will feature more than 50 items, ranging from add-on software and consulting services to a new management system. A portion of the proceeds will go to the Print & Graphics Scholarship Foundation.
On Demand To Address Printing in the Interactive Age
NEWTON, MA—The On Demand Conference & Exposition is set to take place April 20-22 at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia. On the opening day, InfoTrends President Jeff Hayes will kick things off with his "State-of-the-Industry Address: Print Opportunities in an Interactive World" keynote.
Immediately following that presentation, Gina Testa, Xerox Corp.'s vice president, Graphic Communications, will moderate a panel comprised of some of the world's top marketing executives who will explore where print fits in the new marketing landscape.
The On Demand conference will offer seven tracks with more than 40 sessions over the course of two days. For more information, visit www.ondemandexpo.com. PI