Commercial Printing Finds New Growth Opportunities
Start the Presses
Midwest Color Graphics recently added a third press—a 21x29˝ five-color Heidelberg Speedmaster press with a coater. The press can run four-color process with PMS color and add varnish or aqueous coating. "More companies are now buying these multi-color presses," Green said. "It's a very important trend, and it is something that customers are more aware of, especially with jobs for which heavy ink coverage is a factor."
Another piece of equipment that Midwest purchased within the past two years is a Creo direct-to-plate system. "One feature of this system that is a little different is a unique staccato dot configuration that gives more detail than the conventional dot," Green said. "It is higher-quality compared to a dot-like pattern. This is a broken-up pattern that prevents a screen look reflecting in areas such as clothing or skin tones."
Pick & Choose
Since high-quality commercial printing has become so affordable, opportunities for sales are almost unlimited. The toughest challenge for distributors may be simply picking and choosing which markets to delve into.
For both Stylecraft and Midwest Color Graphics, hospitals are a prime source of consistent orders. "One of our more popular products for this market is flow sheets," said Pesci-Jones. "These are sheets that gather critical information to help doctors evaluate patient status."
Pesci-Jones noted that this is just one example of the endless amount of work available through hospitals. She added that high-end, wrap-around covers dress up a conventional business forms job for any end-user, and add more marketing appeal and brand recognition. "One of our most unique jobs involved a fool-proof reference chart providing a large amount of information," she said. "The end-user wanted to ensure that the customer could not pick up the incorrect numbers. So, die-cut windows were positioned to allow the customer to view only applicable data."