The future of digital printing
Not everything in marketing lives in the digital world. It is important that you take the time to review the processes that allow us to have physical art that helps promote your brand, products, and services. In this article, we will explain everything about digital printing, its effectiveness, and the trends that are taking place around the world.
What is digital printing?
Digital printing is the process of reproducing a digital file on any type of material, including but not limited to paper, vinyl, fabric, and cardboard. It is undoubtedly a high-quality technique that allows you to have the material in your hands practically instantly.
Although this process was invented in 1993, today it is the preferred printing method for many. Clear examples of digital printing are the images or documents you get with a laser printer or an inkjet printer.
Trends in the digital printing world
The digital printing market is very large. Therefore, it is necessary to divide it into several segments, which include:
- Printing process: electrophotography or inkjet.
- Application: books, commercial printing, etc.
- Packaging: labels, corrugated packaging, boxes, cartons, flexible packaging, plastic packaging, metal packaging.
- Geography: North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Latin America, Middle East, Africa
Not surprisingly, trends in the world of digital printing vary from segment to segment. Printing a book will never be the same as printing a label or packaging. But in broad terms, here are the trends that are happening now.
The first thing you should know is that more and more companies and customers are turning to digital printing as a mechanism to promote their products and services and differentiate themselves from the competition.
The industry is always looking to increase efficiency and product quality while reducing costs. In fact, quality is increasingly being demanded by customers, who are moving away from large print runs and focusing on shorter but high-quality runs.
On the other hand, there is a shift from offset to wide-format digital printing to meet the needs of the advertising industry and provide greater customization and flexibility in design. Until a few years ago, billboards and other marketing materials were printed using analog processes. But this has changed, and now inkjet printing and dye sublimation have made the process much more efficient, providing companies with more options of materials, sizes and at a much lower cost.
The use of neon colors combined with white to highlight a product or text on a material is also a trend. As well as printing on heavier-weight paper, which greatly expands the possibilities for marketing professionals.
Have you thought about the next material you are going to print? How are you going to make it stand out from everything else out there? It’s a tough world out there and making a brand stand out is not an easy process. If you need help, don’t hesitate to contact any of the agencies listed on our website.
Examples: How brands have used digital printing
As we said earlier, digital printing opens the door to any number of formats and types of materials. But capturing the attention of your customers takes more than just good printing. The key is to understand who your customers are and what their pain points are. What are their goals and what are the obstacles in their way?
Here are a number of examples of brands that have managed to combine all of these elements to create memorable pieces with an excellent return on investment.
This brand of flea and tick prevention products for dogs and cats captured the attention of thousands by placing an advertisement that covered a significant portion of the floor of a shopping mall. People from the upper floors watched the shoppers as if they were little animals wiggling all over a Golden Retriever’s fur.
Uncomfortable? A little. Nobody wants their pet to be full of parasites. But the goal was achieved. The brand had positioned itself in the minds of its ideal buyers.
Not everything in advertising has to be huge. You can do small but memorable things. Such is the case with Axe and its Neo Attack campaign. If you don’t remember, it showed women going crazy and chasing after a man who had used Axe.
Their art? Small additions to the typical posters that tell you where the emergency exits are at different locations in subway stations.
The “Share a Coke” campaign is a perfect example of how the combination of digital printing and creativity is the perfect complement for any brand.
In this case, the soft drink brand released a series of bottles labeled with the most popular names of the moment. In addition, consumers were invited to share them with their friends, and family, and on social networks. The hashtag #shareacoke quickly went viral and the brand received hundreds and thousands of photos generated by users around the world.
Benefits of working with digital printing systems
The success of digital printing has not been in vain, it responds to the great and multiple benefits it brings to companies and customers. In this article, we will explain 5 advantages, but we are sure that you will quickly think of others.
It is a cost-effective printing method
The start-up costs of digital printing are significantly lower than traditional methods because less time is spent on each job. This makes it an affordable option for many businesses that fit into any marketing budget. Plus, it’s the perfect way to create physical mailers, brochures, packaging, coupons, and more.
It is worth noting that the digital printing industry is making great strides in being environmentally friendly.
Digital printing is a fast service
Once the digital file is ready, physical reproduction is fast. In fact, the most time-consuming part of the process is the design, editing, and pre-press adjustments. Because printing is done directly from the digital file, there is no need to go through plates or separate images into colors. For this reason, we see many marketing professionals and companies prefer this option to offset printing.
Guarantees the highest quality work
Digital printing guarantees a high level of precision, reducing the margin of error that offset printing has. This means that there is less chance of a piece being rejected due to inconsistencies with the original design.
In addition, proofs are printed on the same presses that will be used to print your project. This guarantees color accuracy, and if adjustments are needed, you can make them at the printer’s before the run begins.
Quantities to be printed depending on your needs
In offset printing, the price is usually determined by the time spent configuring each project. But, as we said, this is not the case with digital printing. It is a fast and inexpensive process. Therefore, it gives you the opportunity to choose whether you want to print one unit, 5, 10, 100, or 4000. You don’t have to do hundreds of orders to make the investment worthwhile.
Flexibility in the materials you can work with
Another great advantage of working with this type of printing technology is that it opens the door to a world of possibilities where you can choose different materials to print your designs on. You can use clothing, t-shirts, wood, metals, plastics, paper of various weights, and much more.
Enables customization of every print
This benefit is especially important for marketers. We know the power of personalized messages, which is why we emphasize this point. Digital printing makes the personalization process easy and cost-effective.
By allowing short runs of a material, it gives you the ability to create unique messages for each of your target audiences. Whether you emphasize a need they have, a benefit of your product, or anything else. The fact is, this type of machine allows you to use your imagination and creativity to create memorable campaigns.
Digital printing VS offset printing
Throughout this article, we have mentioned some of the differences between digital and offset printing, but we feel it is appropriate to emphasize that only an expert in the field would be able to tell the difference between pieces printed by each method. In other words, the result is practically the same. What varies is the process, the cost, and the speed.
For example, offset printing is slow and expensive to start, but the run is fast. It usually works with long runs to be profitable. It requires a longer drying time. And, perhaps most importantly, every sheet is the same as the next.
With digital printing, the start-up and drying time is fast, and the run is done at medium speed. You can run from one unit to hundreds and thousands. They don’t all have to be the same.
Digital printing is the result of the evolution of offset printing. Thanks to new technologies, this printing method has become an efficient and high-quality way to reproduce designs on various materials.
If you are a small or medium-sized business, this is undoubtedly the ideal option for you. The cost is affordable, the results are customizable, and the accuracy is enviable. Plus, as technology continues to evolve, new options for both ink and paper will continue to emerge.