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Fold it Like Beckham

Monday, 08 July 2013 | By Gerry Mulvaney


By Gerry Mulvaney, European Sales Manager, Landa Digital Printing


Sex sells, there is no doubt about it. Pictures of David Beckham promoting watches, underwear or male cosmetics, vie with photo shoots of glamorous women selling Pirelli car tyres and expensive jewellery in the Sunday magazines.

We all have our own little peccadillos and marketing people spend time and money uncovering them, so they can attract our attention to the products they are promoting. I don’t know about you, but despite the fact I am aware of it happening, I am just as likely to pick up a packet in the supermarket, a brochure in a car showroom, or book a cinema ticket on the basis of subliminal messaging placed there by the activity of advertising professionals.

There are so many buying different triggers, particularly today in the sort of multi-cultural and multi-age societies in which we live in Europe. Marketing departments have to take a lot of notice of their target customer bases and try to produce their messaging accordingly.

For the big supermarket chains, car dealers, home improvement warehouses and department stores, it is no longer any good expecting that the same set of words and images will work in towns and cities as diverse as London, Manchester, Paris, Frankfurt or Dublin. Each will need its own set of buying triggers to cater for the customers of those cities.

Breaking it down to cities is also sometimes not enough in today’s diverse communities. In the City of Nottingham where I live, shops are displaying marketing messages in English, Polish, Urdu, Kurdish, Punjabi, and Lithuanian – to name a few. The products are similar, particularly those in food shops, but the customer expects to see familiar pictures and words on the packets and boxes.

The challenge for large and small businesses is to be able to use suitable point of sale materials and use them in the right place and at the right time. This is a great opportunity for digital printers with wide format devices and a potential opportunity in the future for printers using carton presses with digital capability, such as Landa’s S10 B1 press.

Retail business needs a constant supply of ever changing marketing materials, from shelf talkers, posters and banners to pop up displays and cut outs all individually produced with the specific target customers in mind. It is obvious that a Polish banner in a Punjabi supermarket may not be targeting the right market. Likewise a poster advertising a car full of kids, won’t attract an “oldie” like me. But there are also other much more subtle variations which marketing teams want to exploit, so run lengths are short and volumes are falling.

In today’s European markets the way that big business markets its products to potential customers is tailored to lots of different needs and wants. Society is making companies work harder for its custom, and this is creating a big opportunity for those printers out there who invest in digital printing and have the skills and knowledge to exploit it to the full.

Landa S10 - Printing Press