Monday, 26 Nov 2012 11:06 GMT

I'm sick of hearing printers are crap at marketing

This is something that has been bugging me for a while – maybe I'm now getting it off my chest because its Monday morning, and there is no coffee in the office.


This is something that has been bugging me for a while – maybe I'm now getting it off my chest because its Monday morning, and there is no coffee in the office.

I am absolutely sick of hearing that printers don't know how to market themselves. I've been working at Print Monthly more than 18 months now, and if I had a pound for everytime I heard it, then I'd be able to buy a marketeer for everyone in the industry.

We all bleat about the increased response rates of printing (TRUE), the emotional appeal of printing  (TRUE), and that people bloody well like the printed piece of paper (TRUE) so why isn't the message getting through?

I asked Prinovis' managing director Richard Gray that question, and he said that 'we have forgotten (as an industry) how to market ourselves.' Sound familiar?

Look, I'm not going to pretend for one second that I'm dealing with the pressures that owners of a printing business does – I don't (really) have to worry about overheads, commoditisation, feeding my children (I don't have any), or keeping staff in a job.

I 100 percent understand that a printer has more pressing short-term concerns than marketing strategy for themselves. Consider the following though.

There are two scenarios at play here:

Scenario A: Spend £50 on some digital marketing and make £75 in return

or

Scenario B: Spend £100 on some print, or even a combination of print and online and you make £200 in return.

Sounds like an easy sell but the problem is that people never actually hear about scenario B.

So who can do something about it? The manufacturers that's who.

If they help the industry grow, they grow. Simple equation.

Print Power already do a brilliant job, but if I'm still hearing the same comments more action is needed.

Manufacturers! Help your customers market themselves and help print thrive.

I am not shirking my responsibilities here either - get in touch and lets work together on this.