Publish date: 09.07.19

Would you like to charge up to 89% more for your print?

The answer is simple: sell enhanced digital print. According to a Infotrends’ Beyond CMYK report [1], printing companies that sell this type of product can charge between 24% and 89% more (the variance is dependent on the type of finishing).

What is interesting about this report is that the pricing levels were taken from interviews with buyers, not sellers, of print. So it really does give a good idea of what customers are willing to pay. The report also highlights that there is a real demand for this type of print: it is not just a small sector of the market. For instance, some buyers felt that spot colours would be applicable in up to 58% of the print that they purchased. If you do not offer enhanced digital print, you are missing out on some very profitable opportunities.

What is enhanced digital print?

Enhanced digital print covers everything that is not just CMYK print. So it includes online embellishments such as the white ink, silver and gold inks and clear varnishes of the Xerox Iridesse Press. But it also includes offline finishing that changes the look and feel of the finished item. This may include foiling, raised varnishes and any of the wide range of laminates that are available.

What happens when a customer picks up a piece of enhanced print?

It is worth looking at how people react when they pick up a piece of print. The majority of people who pick up different pieces of print will spend longer with the ones that have embellishments, especially if it is a finish that they have not seen before. Many people will take time to look at, feel and examine the printed piece if it feels unusual to them. They will not usually spend the same amount of time with a standard piece of print that does not feature enhancements.

When we watch people, we can see that embellishing print does improve engagement rates with users. But why is this the case?

There is a scientific reason why people spend longer with embellished print

Did you know you physically freeze when you see something unexpected? Even reading that sentence has probably caused your body to freeze, unless it is a fact that you already know.

What actually happens is that the brain receives a strong neuro alert when it encounters a surprise. Your cognitive resources are hijacked and this causes the body to freeze temporarily, albeit for only around 1/25th of a second. The body’s cognitive resources then trigger extreme curiosity in the brain to try and work out what is happening. [2]

The same occurs when someone looks at a piece of print with an unusual finish. The brain will go through the same freezing and curiosity routine. So, if they want their audience to spend more time with the print, your customers need to provoke curiosity with unusual finishes. The case for clients investing in embellishments has suddenly become a lot more compelling.

There’s some more science you should know about as well

More and more companies are using sensory marketing. Research has shown that when we connect to other senses than just sight, we create a higher emotional connection with an experience or an intended purchase. So if marketing involves other senses, such as touch, it creates better results. This is particularly relevant to high value purchases.

Print is ideally placed to help with creating this emotional bond. One report states “The feeling of the smooth, silky surface of an ad in a magazine generates an emotional bond with the advertised brand.” [3] By adding further tactile finishes, we can make the emotional bond even stronger: we can increase the level of desire and, potentially, the price of the product or service can be raised.

So how do you sell enhanced digital print?

The easiest way to sell these finishes is by showing the business results that you have created for other clients using similar finishes. It is always good practice to ask customers to share their business results with you. However, not everyone is prepared to reveal this level of information.

Another way is to run your own campaign using embellished print. Run a test campaign using normal print at the same time so you can compare results. Then you will have some practical information to share with prospects.

Naturally, you should also tell prospects about the science behind print embellishments. Even if you cannot provide examples of business results, covering the science gives your prospect a logical reason to add embellishments to their piece.

Whichever route you choose, remember one thing

Once you start to sell embellishments in this way, you are selling something very different to commodity print. The conversation starts to move away from price. Instead, the focus ought to be on improving results for your customer.

This means that you should help the customer design their printed items to have maximum effect. You can encourage them to use embellishments that you can produce in house. You can work with their designers to ensure the best results. Or you can design a piece on their behalf. Achieving the right design is a powerful way to create a value which is much more difficult to put a price on.

Here are three action steps to help you start selling print with embellishments

  1. Create your own marketing piece. Make sure you show off the finishes that you can produce to the best effect. Make it an item that will wow your customers. Just as importantly, make sure that it explains why your customers should be using these embellishments.
  2. Use this as a direct mail campaign for your top customers. They should all receive this piece through the post. You should then follow the mailing up with a personal call. You can also offer to bring further samples to their office.
  3. Make sure that a sample of the piece is included with every delivery you make to an end customer. This will also start generating enquiries from clients who want to achieve more with their print.

Now you are ready to have some very different conversations with your prospects and clients. You will be in a much better position to start charging up to 89% more for your print.

Are you up to date with all the latest developments in print embellishment?

Make sure you contact Xeretec today at [email protected] . We’ll send someone to show you a range of solutions that will enable you to offer enhanced print and achieve higher pricing levels.