InfoTrends author Frank Romano showcased recently in an article (The Next Big Thing, InfoTrends InfoBlog, November, 2016) how the existing wide format inkjet technology in most print shops opens the doors for PSPs to participate in a new and growing category: Industrial Printing. The ability of flatbed UV presses to print quality images directly on substrates like plastics, wood, glass, board, metal, ceramics, textiles, and carpeting has spurred printers to effectively compete in new markets like Home Decor, a $664 billion worldwide industry.
“Where is there a market for printing on textiles? How about the covering for your chair or sofa? Or printing on glass to give you a Tiffany stained glass look? How about personalized wallpaper? Or artwork that matches a color scheme? Or personalized artwork on your carpet?” — Frank Romano, InfoTrends
The good news is most PSPs already have the technology on their floor to begin participating in this lucrative market area. Flatbed UV presses from the Inca Onset X Series and Acuity Series are already cranking out profitable work on all kinds of POP substrates in your shops. But familiarity with the equipment is just the first step in tapping into new markets like home decor. The next move is to expand your knowledge of what home decorators and even home owners expect you’ll provide them in.
“Often the most difficult obstacle facing PSPs in expanding into the home decor market is training their sales team to understand that each customer represents an opportunity to bring their lifestyle to life in a personal and unique nature. Those that adapt can build a strong and profitable new niche business.” — Becky McConnell, Product Manager, Fujifilm
McConnell suggests these next steps for PSPs interested in expanding into the home decor market:
- Expand your production team’s knowledge on how the flatbed presses perform by building a portfolio of printed pieces on the various unique home decor substrates mentioned in this article.
- Accomplishing the above step may require new knowledge in how to work with new substrates and inks, as well as laser die-cutting, embossing and finishing techniques. Your Fujifilm sales representative has many resources available to assist you in this education.
- Partner with a local home decorator to learn more about the uniqueness of working in this new market area. Showcase your samples to educate on how you can provide new, creative solutions for their customers. Involve your sales team in the entire process so they too will experience ways to effectively sell into this market.
- Consider establishing a print showcase area at your shop location where home decorators can bring their customers to help them bring their individual lifestyle home decor dreams to life.
By investing a little time and effort in getting to know the home decor marketplace, you’ll be positioning your company to gain a share of this growing and lucrative opportunity. After all, you’ve already invested in the technology. Here’s a new and profitable way to keep the presses running!