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Trade Comment

Adding sparkle

With customers looking for that sparkling added value, Genevieve Lewis asks: "how can adding foiling and embossing to your repertoire entice new business?"

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Bryan Godwyn, managing director, Intelligent Finishing Systems

Instant ROI

Businesses can no longer rely on printing a few fliers to prompt a flurry of calls and orders. That is why today’s printer needs to be the marketing arm of their customer. They should show how enhancing the message can capture the desired results.

We can help by creatively collaborating to produce a finished product that stands out. Something that engages with the end user in a unique way and inspires action. Something that is focused, relevant and of course cost effective. Anyone can print a sheet, but can they add value by enhancing it with special effects laminate or foiling? Can they create a real stand out product?

Using technology such as the foiling option on the Foliant range of laminators enables many creative applications

Using technology such as the foiling option on the Foliant range of laminators enables many creative applications. And the return on such a small investment is pretty much instant. A small number of jobs upsold will get the desired return while quickly opening up more discussions about what else can be offered. If the cost is 5% more but has a 25% uplift in response, then that premium is justified and the customer will happily cover it.

So, engage with the end user and develop the relationship. Before quoting find out what the point of the job is and develop it from there. Offer help and measure the work with the customer.

With this approach customers won’t be so price conscious or want to look elsewhere. They will be happy to pay a premium for your knowledge and marketing capabilities that will in turn help them obtain better returns on their spend. They will trust your expertise and everyone wins. If you don’t, and printed jobs miss the mark, the end user might divert spend to other marketing resources because they think the medium has failed.

The risk of doing nothing is that nothing will change. Why not try something different to help you on your way to a shinier future?

The Matrix

Lewis Evans, product manager, Vivid Laminating Technologies

Traditional foiling, requiring expensive custom-made dies, specialist machinery and finicky set-up, was really only suited for high-end jobs and long print-runs. For printers offering a digital print solution, it wasn’t usually a viable or cost-effective solution, certainly not possible in-house.

With the introduction of digital foiling, these issues have been swept aside, opening up new opportunities for digital print businesses. Using a Matrix system, for instance, allows the application of a wide range of coloured foils and clear and holographic spot UV types effects with virtually no set-up, simple operation and at a low unit cost. As the Matrix also laminates, it means only single piece of equipment is required for lamination, foiling and spot UV type effects, all achievable in-house and on-demand.

As the Matrix also laminates, it means only single piece of equipment is required for lamination, foiling and spot UV type effects

So, instead of competing on price in a never-ending race to the bottom, a digital print studio can now actually raise prices and significantly increase profit margins by offering embellished work that customers are willing to pay a premium for.

It is quite common for us to hear customers who bought a Matrix for lamination, expecting only to do a bit of foiling, to tell us a few months later, that demand for the foiling has gone through the roof and foiling is now the primary use of the system.

With the latest Matrix, the Metallic, which has been specially optimised for foiling, an even wider creative landscape is opened up because this system handles some uncoated papers including some Colorplan from GF Smith and similar from Antalis. So really nice stocks can be foiled to create stunning wedding stationary, business cards, eye-catching flyers and short-run packaging and much more besides.

Printers that have bought the Matrix all tell us the same thing – that demand for foiled products just keeps on growing. As more designers and print specifiers become aware of the creative possibilities of digital embellishment, this demand is set to continue to rise.

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