I am a student at Clemson University studying Graphic Communications and have had the opportunity to talk with some of the industry’s leaders in innovation that have embraced the business strategy of becoming a marketing service provider
. What separates them from failing competitors, they told me, is the ability to hop on board with the changes coming in the industry.
It would appear that the longer some people are in this industry (or really any industry), the more likely it is that they lose their hunger for success. The bottom line is: It takes an innovative mind to accept this new form of a print company. From my perspective, I offer the following three reasons for becoming a marketing service provider
:1) Print (to many) has become a commodity.
2) Value-added services—differentiate your firm from competitors.
- Most printing companies today have comparable abilities to provide good quality and fast delivery.
- The decision factor usually is who can do it cheapest.
- Companies can only lower costs so much before they stop making a profit. So what, then, makes someone choose your company over another one?
3) Sell solutions—know your clients overall goal.
- Invest in new technology. Bringing in new equipment can be a big change and very costly for a company, and I’ve noticed many aren’t willing to do it. However, many companies that are investing in new technology are quickly seeing a return on their investment and now have an advantage over companies without it.
- Don’t be scared of change. Never allowing ourselves to become too comfortable in one area is the key.
- Don’t just embrace change, MAKE change. Be the first to try new ideas.
- Keeping a curious and inventive mindset is essential. We have to be continually finding new sales avenues and new services to offer.
- Make the client’s success your main focus. When your customers are successful, you are successful. Focus on the ROI of the product or service you’re providing. Be a part of your clients’ company growth by tracking results of marketing campaigns and then teaching clients how to interpret that data.
- You will develop loyal client relationships when they feel a direct connection between you and their success.
In talking to some of my peers, I realized an advantage we have coming into the industry at this time. Since we are not blinded by the old ways of doing things, we can see different avenues and opportunities that those not willing to change cannot.
This is such an exciting time to be entering the industry, and I am actively searching for companies that will continually strive to be a leader in innovation.Innovation = Growth