As this year's biggest wide format digital printing events come upon
us one of the things I always look forward to is the assortment of digital
print media options that hit the market for the first time. The variety of
media is big and always getting bigger as more-and-more products are
re-engineered to be compatible with the latest ink technology.
Print media is so important to
the wide format digital printing market because it enables applications that
help the market grow. For dealers of wide format digital printing equipment and
supplies, media is a critical part of what they sell. Dealers who don't play
very actively on the media side are wasting a big part of the opportunity that
wide format digital represents. Let's look at two major reasons why:
Reason 1: Volume & Value
Of course dealers have to be able to provide these media products very quickly,
and the wide variety of media products that are required make it a challenge to
meet those same day/next day needs.
If you can do it, this is a huge differentiator between you and some
other dealers who may "dabble" in inkjet media but haven't made it a
strategic part of their business. The ability to fulfill media orders is a key
decision criteria for print shops. They'll always go back to "the guys who
can always get" whatever media products they need.
The other aspect of print media
sales is that it represents a big part of selling wide format products in the
first place. In our research we have found that the average wide format shop
spends approximately 1/3rd more on inkjet media per year than it does on inks.
By that calculus alone the print media is a more important part of the supplies
value. But it is also true that many print shops will spend as much on print
media in one year as they did on their printer which they would expect to use
for 3-5 years.
Think about it, how often does a company change the ink formulation for their
printer? Almost never. How often does a new media product come out for that
printer? All the time! When a new media product hits the market it gives the
dealer a perfect reason to call on the users to tell them about the expanded
portfolio, explain the benefits of the product, what applications its for, etc.
This is a perfect
relationship-building opportunity and it is something we hear over-and-over
again from end users that they want to see from their dealers.
Wide format print media is a
key part of profiting from wide format products and services. Effective selling
is both a highly transactional and "high-touch" effort that can add
significantly to the dealers' bottom line.
Author: Tim Greene, Director of Wide Format Printing
Consulting Services, InfoTrends, will field your questions, comments or
arguments by email: tim_greene@infotrends.