The Wide, Wide World of… –Sherburne

This NBA “stained glass” image was printed on Lexan and produced on an EFI VUTEk QS3200 device for the 2007 NBA All-Star event.

The World’s Largest Ad, produced on a Gandinnovations Jeti, is located near the Dubai airport.

IF YOU had an opportunity to attend SGIA or Graph Expo—or both—last month, I hope you took the time to see what is new in the world of wide-format ink-jet. There have been lots of exciting advances that commercial printing businesses should consider taking advantage of to diversify their businesses and drive revenue growth. I recently had the opportunity to speak with the folks at Lithographix Inc. Located in sunny Southern California, the firm was founded in 1953 as a general commercial printer and is now one of the most diversified graphics companies in the country, generating about $110 million in annual revenues with 330 employees.

Several years ago, Lithographix began to see a trend among its customers. They were asking whether the company could expand its production portfolio to include outdoor advertising and other large-format display graphics, so that they could turn to a single source for all of the materials included in a campaign. Lithographix responded by adding grand- (superwide) format capabilities several years ago. Today, the company has an amazing portfolio of superwide-format ink-jet printers and owns a six-color, 81? offset press, the largest press on the West Coast.

Now, I am not a big fan of equipment lists as a selling tool. They are somewhat of a necessary evil, but certainly should not be used as the lead item in a sales call on a new customer. I’m a firm believer in approaching sales calls from the perspective of the business objectives the customer is trying to achieve, a technique that worked very well for me during my 10+ years in sales before I crossed over to the dark side (marketing!).

But Lithographix has one of the best examples of an equipment list I have seen: six pages long. It is worth visiting their site and downloading it (www.lithographix.com). Sure, it has the usual nuts and bolts, speeds and feeds. But, as a company in the graphic communications industry, Lithographix has done a great job of making it into a marketing piece, rich with graphics, and demonstrating the breadth of the firm’s capabilities, services and customer conveniences.

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