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Re-thinking the Business of Output

(March 2007) posted on Fri Mar 16, 2007

The Signage and Graphics Summit helps attendees find the road to profits.

click an image below to view slideshow

By Peggy Middendorf

Out-of-home advertising expert Freitas demonstrated the power of outdoor advertising and the growing desire by companies to market products to consumers in all possible venues. The variety of non-traditional marketing opportunities he showcased ranged from bus/vehicle wraps, bus shelters, and taxi toppers to ads on blimps and sailboats, messages that change based on location (using GPS technology), and interactive signs that incorporate text messages from passing consumers. In short, his message was, "Get ready, outdoor advertising is not just billboards anymore."

Webb offered a study of global and market economics and presented participants with his analysis-without the usual financial mumbo-jumbo. His presentation included economic myths and limiting factors for business; business demographics, technologies, and social trends and their impact on the marketplace; an examination of the sign industry; and up-and-coming market opportunities.

Market consultant Flippin, meanwhile, offered a glimpse into the state of wide-format inkjet printing in 2010. Through data collected via Web Consulting surveys and market research, he predicted the increase in UV-curable printer sales-with a 65% CAGR by 2010 versus only a 3% CAGR for solvent and -9% for aqueous printer sales; print revenues follow closely behind printer sales numbers. In addition, he forecasted continued market consolidation (manufacturers and print shops), an influx of traditional printing suppliers entering the wide-format market, and that increased capital and interest in inkjet will lead to decreased manufacturing costs and more productive printer pricing, especially for UV-curable systems.

Back again this year was the popular "Buyer’s Panel." Here, a trio of print buyers from large companies shared how they made signage and buying decisions. Participants included: Harry Steen, creative design supervisor for SuperValu, which owns grocery chains nationwide, including the recently purchased Albertsons; Jay Higashi, senior design account specialist for Best Buy with mega-stores around the globe, including a recent store opening in China; and Ben Tsai from Cramer-Krasselt Advertising, which handles ad and marketing campaigns for local, regional, and national accounts, including the likes of Heinz and Toyota.