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The future of wide-format printing across different industries

James Jones

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The future of wide-format printing across different industries

Did you know that the wide-format printer market is growing in most developed countries around the world and generates billions of dollars in revenue?

What initially started as a blueprint-printing solution for engineers, architects, and construction crews, has now escalated into a huge market opportunity for restaurants, schools, stores, and companies of practically every size and shape. If you are currently looking to expand your company and grow sales, exploring the opportunities offered by large-format printers is a great place to start.

 

Who can use wide-format printing?

The list of people, institutions, companies, and organisations utilising wide-format printing is long and diverse. In fact, you would be hard-pressed to find a firm that does not use wide-format printing in some way. Here are a few examples of popular markets and how they are actually using wide-format printing nowadays:

Leisure, travel and Entertainment:

Hotels, amusement parks, casinos, and sports arenas use it to create lobby displays, posters, ticket booth signs and special deals and offers.

Restaurants and Retailers:

Grocery stores and fast-food restaurants use it to develop in-store displays, sale signs, and even backlit drive-thru menu boards.

Retail:

Stores and large warehouses use wide-format printing to generate point-of-sale graphics, end caps, window signage as well as floor advertising.

Corporate Business:

Fortune 1000 firms, law agencies, banks, and real estate agencies use it for announcements, courtroom graphics, trade shows, and directional signs.

Engineering & Construction:

Architects, construction crews and engineers use it to print blueprints, CAD drawings, engineer prints in general, landscape designs and oversized schematics.

Marketing:

Advertising and marketing agencies, as well as design studios, use wide-format printing to create client presentations.

Federal and Local Government:

Political campaigns, fire departments, authorities & police departments, as well as cities, use it for special event graphics, municipal planning, safety signage and parks, and recreation posters.

Education:

Grammar schools, colleges, high schools, and vocational schools use wide-format printing for classroom materials, plays and presentations, posters, fundraisers, bulletin boards and alumni events.

 

The future of wide-format printing across different industries

After seeing this list of possibilities above, you may quickly realize that the sales opportunities here are vast. Even if you have zero experience selling wide-format printing solutions, it is really not hard to learn. The key to effectively creating value and selling business solutions is learning to deeply understand a customer’s needs. Then filling these needs as accurately and completely as possible.

 

Asking the right questions

By finding out the answers to the following questions, you will be able to understand a customer’s needs and thus make good recommendations. They can steer the conversation to identify the adequate kind of printer, the ideal size—even down to the perfect model.

 

What is the purpose of a wide-format graphic?

Does the customer need to create window displays, presentations for business meetings, banners for fundraising events, menu boards, car wraps or blueprints? Or maybe the customer is hoping to have multiple purposes. Their answers will steer the conversation in very different directions.

 

What materials will you be printing on?

Different printers and models are built for certain types of apps. For instance, some are designed specifically for photographic, fine art and commercial proofing apps. Some others can create high volume, high-quality prints on fabrics, like for instance flags and soft signage. Others specialise in printing on materials like plastics, wood, acrylic, metals and more. Different materials will require different inks, and this will dictate what printer options are actually available.

 

What is the need for speed?

Ask your customer about how often and how much he or she will be printing. A base model might work if he or she does not need a quick turnaround, but they might want to go for a more advanced model for high-volume printing at faster speeds.

 

What size ranges are required?

You need to know if the customer will be printing smaller poster-size prints or very large billboards.

 

How and for how long will the wide-format graphic be displayed?

The customer might be planning to frame it, perhaps hang it from the ceiling or mount it to the window. Knowing all these details will help determine the type of media to be used and if finishing will be required.

 

What about the graphic view?

You need to understand if the graphic will be viewed up-close or from far away. If the viewers will be viewing it from up-close, you want to make sure they print images at higher resolutions.

 

How much wide-format printing do you do at the moment?

The answer to this specific question will help you immediately gauge the print volume required, the desired speed as well as the scope of the customer’s requirements. In case the volume is high enough, the time savings may justify investing in a wide-format printer.

 

In case you are actually outsourcing this service, how much are you spending?

Customers who invest a lot in outsourced printing costs usually have an easier time justifying the purchase of wide-format printing technology. Do not forget to have them include the outsourced costs for car wraps, tradeshow graphics, and other printed items, many of which can be created with wide-format printers.

James is a London-based copywriter. His passions are the online world and music, and in his free time he enjoys reading her favourite books as well as playing chess and travelling.

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