“I promise – I won’t be judgmental?”
By Debbie Nicholson, Think-to-INK!
I continue to be excited about our industry (Wide-Format) – the opportunities are just endless. I still catch myself “being nosy” when I see something cool or unusual hanging in hotels, restaurants, hospitals, and airports (anywhere actually – my husband would tell you).
I want to know everything about it!
- The substrate they printed (was it rigid, flexible, textile)
- Hanging hardware choices
- Twists and turns (layering) integrated to make it different and unique
- The choice of colors used
- The thickness of the products & depth from the wall
- Location placement
- (to name a few)
I try not to be too obvious – but sometimes I don’t care. I want to learn - I want to grow in my industry. I want to be a better asset to my customers.
-------Don’t tell me – -- you do the same thing! Oh, and I also take pictures… (Shhh)
I hope you take the needed time to search out what is new in our industry (wide-format printing equipment --flat-bed tables, roll-to-roll, hybrids -- even sublimation). Don’t forget that most CNC equipment is so versatile, user-friendly and work-flow savvy. Take a look – I am sure manufacturers would be happy to fly you to a demo!
There are Exciting new substrates (flexible & rigid) laminates, metals, textiles, cutting equipment, work-tables, software programs, hardware (standing and hanging), backlighting, and reflective lighting options. These items seem to change and improve quarterly, if not monthly – so stay tuned in!
If you are not increasing your Wide-Format capabilities – you are missing out! Our end customers want to know what is new; they depend on us to help them with their projects. The only way to get in front of the next project from a customer is to deserve it!
Here are a few line-extensions that could help boost sales in your Wide-Format Department!
- Apparel – Textiles (décor items & clothing)
- Architectural signage (interior and exterior)
- Screen Printing
- Channel lettering (seems harder to find suppliers for this need – to meet customer timelines)
- Vehicle graphics – fleet graphics (get certified – large contracts will require it)
- Engraving has become so popular – check it out – laser and/rotary
- Dye Sublimation (I love this process). This could add depth to your wide-format department
- Lighting has become part of what we offer. Don’t forget to have a GREAT supplier for this need
- Promotional products (us old people call them “premiums”) still a money-maker!
- I have always been fascinated with sand-carving. It is unique and could be a niche market opp.
- Resurfacing Mall kiosks with DINOC
- Wallcovering (permanent & temporary)
- Building Directories
- Glass Décor (Interior & Exterior)
- & More
I hope my columns have been of assistance in some small way to you this past year. My continued goal is to excite you about our industry and throw out a thing or two that will make you think differently about your Company.
Be proud of what you have accomplished this year and be excited about what you will achieve next year – make the right decisions to enhance your offerings and keep your employees excited about showing up every-day!
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