Print design services are a competitive market.
Companies that want to hit their targets need print solutions that are smart and fast. If you aren't servicing your customers with the latest techniques, you're going to miss out on revenue.
Fortunately, companies are outsourcing print design services on a growing basis.
WBR Insights reports that 41% of companies outsourced print management processes in 2017. That's because companies want to focus on their core business objectives. They want to leave the print production and strategy up to you.
But that also means their print needs are your responsibility.
What do all print design services have in common? They need equipment best suited for every job. They also need the right skills and processes to keep business moving forward.
This guide helps you master those essentials. It will help you provide better services to existing and future clients.
How to Compete in the New Market for Print Design Services
With print giants like Kinko's on the market, the competitive landscape is changing.
But it's more than the market. It's also the nature of print itself.
Large commercial printers have some advantages over smaller printers. They can handle more volume and provide a wide array of services. They're also more accessible than most small printers.
What they lack, though, is personalization and dedication. Personalization is the hottest commodity in business today. Dedication to one's customers follows closely behind.
Technology enables small printers to identify niches and engage new customers. But streamlining this process takes a lot of work. It starts with streamlining your business model itself.
6 Tips for Streamlining Your Print Design Business
Your best success strategies depend on your services and target market. But developing that strategy must start within your business.
The opportunities available to small businesses are more powerful than ever. The following guide will help you leverage them to secure your place in the market. It will also offer tips for your long-term success.
1. Make Your Processes More Efficient
The biggest mistake printers make is going 'all in' on new technologies.
Streamlining your print process has dozens of considerations. Personnel, training, and overhead contribute to its success.
Some of these efforts are simple. Be sure you're properly maintaining your existing equipment. Breakdowns are expensive and they can delay your deliverables for clients.
Improve the workflow of your staff. Ensure they're using their skills to their full potential. Prepare them for creativity and ingenuity when they need to learn something new.
You should also improve their schedules and distribution across workstations. Simple improvements compound cost-savings and efficiency. These are basic first steps to increase your business value.
2. Find Your Niche and Develop Services for Those Needs
You won't capture the greater market the way Kinko's does. You can discover niche markets and cater to those needs instead.
Start by leveraging your existing strong points. If high detail work is your proficiency, identify companies who need that type of service. Certain companies may call for specific materials or quantities in which you specialize.
You should also prepare for taking on new markets. You may not be ready to invest in new equipment or staff. But you should identify relevant markets that you could adapt your services to easily.
3. Develop Cost-Effective Solutions for Clients with Limited Budgets
Print will continue to make up a large part of marketing budgets. But customer needs are becoming more varied. Unless you can handle a variety of new types of work, your limited solutions will be in lower demand.
You've identified a niche market that can leverage your existing services. What additional services do they need?
Continue optimizing your processes as you train your team to meet these demands. Make smart investments in the equipment you need to get these jobs done.
4. Train Your Team to Carry Out New Capabilities
Remember, your technology is only as effective as your team. Think ahead to when your new equipment is being shipped. Be sure you don't begin advertising new capabilities before your team knows how to carry them out.
Take an honest assessment of your team members. Are they able and willing to carry out new capabilities? Your goal is to ensure they have no doubts about their new roles.
Then, standardize your new processes. Team members should understand what their new roles involve. These standards should last for the lifetime of the new processes.
When your equipment arrives, your team should be able to start servicing customers immediately. You should train your sales teams on discussing these new capabilities with customers as well.
5. Connect with Customers Through Online Digital Channels
The world of automation and artificial intelligence (AI) are no longer out of reach for small businesses. Forbes says, "The best way to overcome the limitation of time is by automating some of your processes... The key for small businesses is finding a tool that can automate many components at once."
In a competitive market, your business has limited resources. New technologies can put business initiatives in motion without the aid of employees. This allows you to increase your impact without investing human resources.
Automation can manage customer service and task allocation as well. Companies who prefer to deal with partners online benefit from quick service and personalization, even without a human being.
6. Build Strategies for Customer Loyalty and Retention
Customer retention is among the biggest challenges for all businesses. This is especially true of large companies with hundreds or thousands of customers.
As a small business, you have an advantage. Your personalized service is respected by your customers. Still, they can be lured away by the advantages of large competitors.
Now that you've optimized your processes and adopted new technologies, you have the tools you need to improve customer experiences. Be sure to build a simple channel for customer feedback as well.
The information you collect from them will help you improve their experiences as well as future customers.
A Final Note on Essential Print Equipment
When you're securing the right tools for your business, don't overlook the essentials. Some of the best technologies on the market today are cutters and trimmers.
Triumph Cutter offers the finest tools on the market. These include manual, automatic, and programmable tools in use by the best in the business today.
Contact us for a free consultation and get your print design services moving.