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Industry

OKI sees surge in demand for value added print

Although OKI did not have a stand at The Print Show this year, the firm’s presence was certainly felt through its suppliers, which saw a big demand from customers for value added print.

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The trend of personalisation continues to drive value added print solutions

OKI was represented through several partners at the show including Amaya, Ashgrove, Emagination, RGB UK, The Magic Touch and X-Press OnDemand. The focus for the firm largely revolved around demonstrating its solutions for a range of applications, in particular the rising trend of personalisation, thanks to websites like notonthehighstreet.com. The firm’s five-colour printer was in high demand, as customers are looking to add further value to their print products and offer something different.

“As we showed at [The Print Show], one of the big growth markets is personalisation and that is also a massive opportunity for us as an organisation and certainly our future products will make more of the opportunity to output personalised products,” says Rob Brown, head of speciality print for North West Europe at OKI.

… one of the big growth markets is personalisation and that is also a massive opportunity for us as an organisation and certainly our future products will make more of the opportunity to output personalised products

How can a company like OKI keep customers inspired? “The key thing for us is making sure that we’re presenting new ideas, but ideas that are relevant. There’s been a rise in direct mail for instance, everybody was used to receiving junk mail where the outside of the envelope said as much about the product as the inside did, and it went straight in the bin,” says Brown. “Whereas now because most marketing communications have moved to digital, there’s less hard copy mail that goes out. I know from research that now, if somebody sends a direct mail piece the engagement rate is over 80 percent.

“That’s a massive return, especially when you think normally marketing methods are probably less than one percent. When we transact that back to our users in the industry, we play a critical role to educate them that there are opportunities in them being able to take advantage in the rise of direct mail for their clients. It’s about educating them and giving them the right tools to make the most of it.”

OKI had a stand at The Print Show last year, but this year chose to allow its suppliers to demonstrate to customers with the capability of selling products, as OKI do not sell direct. 

“Whilst I think from a branding perspective it’s important for us to be present, but from a perspective where you’re meeting real life customers which is what The Print Show is about, then for us, it’s more important to have our key partners for the right parts of the industry present, and for us to support them,” says Brown.

Bhupinder Bharat, graphic arts business development manager at OKI, adds: “Moving on three years now, I believe OKI’s branding is out there now where it wasn’t before. So, people are actually looking for OKI for the right reasons now which is a breakthrough for us as a company.

“I would say [The Print Show] was very successful, you just have to look at the foot traffic on our dealers’ stands – there were a lot of enquiries being made. For me, I would say it’s a worthwhile show for us and our partners, without a doubt.”

If you have a news story, email summer@linkpublishing.co.uk or follow us on Twitter to have your say.


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