Christmas in the Bindery
As the Christmas deadline approaches, will Santa and his elves be good to binderies everywhere? Will the elves show up to help finish that Christmas book order that’s running a bit late? And, will Santa help out in delivering those finished children’s books to waiting tots everywhere?
Unfortunately, I don’t have the answers to those questions. But ... I do think that there’s good news for bindery folk. Yes, we’re in a digital age, where pre-teens can be seen double-thumbing texts messages on their phones, but I believe we’re also experiencing digital fatigue. Sales of e-books have cratered while hard- and soft-cover sales are rising, and we spend enough time working in front of a screen that hard copy starts to look really good. A well-done vibrant print product still has lots of appeal.
And digital print is the binderies ally. Digital print has enabled production of short runs that simply weren’t possible with offset. For the book market, it’s created a vibrant self-publishing sector for the first time in history. Although quantities per order may be small, there are far more self-published book titles than commercial ones. And digital print means that whatever your print project may be, it can be printed and finished in short order.
On top of that, there has been lots of development in finishing systems for short-run, high-quality products. So if you're a bindery, you have many machine options that will easily match the type and volume of work that you are doing, or would like to do. To top it off, the current system offerings feature “smart” technology that mean you’ll be producing good finished product in the shortest make-ready time ever.
So as we approach Christmas (and the New Year, and the end of Hanukkah) , I’m feeling more optimistic than ever about print and print finishing. Digital print is going to get better and better, and finishing with it, with lots of opportunity for binderies who can research the trends and equip themselves for them. So be happy bindroids, Santa will be good to you!