Epson S-Series Large Format Printers S80760 S60670 S40670

0 comments | Posted by Frederick Sia

Some people say that printing is a sunset industry, that large
format printing is going down. Well, is it?

There are many things to consider when looking at the future
of such a longstanding industry, and there are many variables
and unknowns to such an equation. One thing we do know is
that large format displays will be here to stay for a very long
time. In an era where marketing, media, and advertising is
more pervasive than any time in history, large format displays
serve as the primary medium for physical advertisement and
marketing.


This article serves to address some of the more prevalent issues
that revolve around large format printing, and why it makes
sense to enter such a seemingly competitive and saturated
market.


Competition
The first issue that most prospective entrants have is
competition. Most cite a saturated market and cut-throat price
pressures. They aren't wrong. However, just as in most other
markets, clients in the print industry can also be stratified, as
shown in the diagram below.

 

The diagram depicts the pyramid of prospective clients in the
print industry. Right now, most of the competition is
concentrated around the base of the pyramid, which is
predominantly a high volume, low margin business. Barriers to
entry are so low, that almost anyone can participate with a lowgrade
machine and mediocre products. Now here's the
interesting part - much of the upper tiers of the pyramid
remain unsaturated. Barriers to entry become higher at the
upper levels as clients who are more particular about colours
and quality are more often the ones who are willing to pay a
premium for it. Machines like the Epson S80670 will allow you
to compete effectively in these profitable pockets in the
market. By competing in these market segments, you will not
only be able to enjoy higher margins, you will also be able to
raise the profile of your company and tender for larger projects
in the future.

Knowledge and expertise
Another common concern is that they do not have the
necessary expertise to penetrate the large format printing
industry. The ability to execute effectively in large format
printing can be broken down into two parts: i) printing, and ii)
installation. Firstly, large format printing in many sense is
similar to other forms of printing (offset, digital, label, etc), so
many of the skills required are actually transferable. And if
that's not impetus enough, large format printing can be picked
up fairly quickly as long as one has a rudimentary knowledge of
design software such as Adobe Illustrator, and Photoshop.
Most companies who supply these printers will provide
training for your operators. A note of caution: many nonbranded
printers or distributors who aren't reputable may
provide no, or shoddy training and technical support, therefore
your choice of whom you decide to work with must be
carefully considered. Secondly, we understand that most
companies would want to provide a complete solution, which
necessarily involves installation of large banners, backlits, and
wall stickers. Such installations can be tedious and labourintensive,
which is why we suggest sub-contracting the
installation part of the job to firms specialising in this area.
Once the volume reaches a point where the return on
investment makes sense, then consider building an in-house
installation team.

Disruption in the industry
Lastly, opponents of large format printing often tout the
emergence of new technology, such as LED displays, which will
render industries like large format printing obsolete. It may be
true that LED displays have begun to occupy certain areas of
the advertising space which used to be dominated by large
format prints, however, there are several reasons as to why we
are convinced that large format printing will be insulated from
disruption, at least in the near future. Firstly, as new
technologies creep into the market, applications for large
format printing is broadening at an equal, if not quicker, pace.
The range of usage for wall stickers, backlits, and fabric usage
continues to grow as advertising becomes more commonplace
and affordable. Large format printing technology has also
advanced leaps and bounds, which has the dual effect of
making the cost of printing cheaper while improving print
quality. Secondly, certain applications for large format prints
remain irreplaceable for the foreseeable future. For example,
vehicle wraps are not likely to be substituted by LED displays
due to the hazardous nature of lighting displays on moving
vehicles. Installation for large format prints is straightforward.
LED displays are still limited by size, and when they do
increase in size, costs increase disproportionately.

Cause for optimism
There are many reasons to justify our optimism toward the
industry, to renew the faith of the pessimists, and to quieten
the naysayers. This article lists but a few. In short, we believe
that the industry holds much promise and profit for the bold
who dares venture. With the right tools and careful support
from trusted suppliers, the moat that protects large format
printing against disruption remains robust.

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