By Gerry Mulvaney, European Sales Manager, Landa Digital Printing
Benny Landa’s next generation of Nanographic Printing® presses are going to provide a great opportunity for printers to improve their profit margins, but they will only achieve it if they educate their sales and marketing teams in the ways to do it. Rather than competing in a price driven, commodity market, the sales and marketing team will need to focus their efforts to show how the new technology can increase sales and profits of their customers.
An understanding of the technicalities of Landa’s Nanography® technology will be important for sales teams, but the critical part will not be an understanding of the nuts and bolts. Rather – how it can be used to satisfy the needs of the end customer. That old adage of a salesman having two ears and one mouth and using them in that proportion is as true today as it has always been and will be just as important in the age of Nanography®.
All of us have asked ourselves the question, “so what does this do for me?” when making purchasing decisions. Print and packaging buyers are no different.
Printers’ sales and marketing people are going to have to spend time learning what is keeping their customers awake at night. Asking relevant questions and listening carefully to the answers will be an important skill to master. Identifying these customer pain points and using the features and benefits of the Nanography® process to come up with solutions will be critical – not selling the technology behind it.
What Can the Nanography® Process Do for Me?
Once you can demonstrate to a customer how they can increase their sales line or improve their gross profit margins, the price of your product or the way it is produced is rarely discussed. Nanographic Printing® technology is going to bring a host of new features to mainstream printing. An extended colour gamut from CMYK, a bigger range of printable substrates, instant ink drying, variable data printing are all features – not benefits – of Landa’s new digital printing process.
However, not having to pay for special colours for example is a benefit of the extended colour gamut, while creating a new look and feel is the benefit of a wider range of substrates. Variable data printing brings the benefit of versioning and personalisation of the printed product and instant drying means the benefit of shorter turnarounds for finishing. It is these benefits which will satisfy the customer needs, not the features.
So printers’ sales teams will need to stop selling features like the speed of their presses, the competitiveness of their price list or worst of all, the list of printing equipment they use. These are all just features. They will need to put a lot more effort into understanding what they are actually going to be doing for their customer.
For successful sales teams, understanding the technology behind the Nanography® process will mean translating its features into benefits that satisfy customer needs. Answering the perennial customer question, “so what does this do for me?” will be one way of preserving that Holy Grail – sustainable and healthy profit margins.