February 1, 2023

Trending Applications in Print

Application ideas that will help your customers capture more market share, improve ROI, and get their own customers talking.

Worker checking print quality of graphics in modern printing hou

It’s not enough to just be a print provider anymore — you want to be a partner in their business, offering up new and innovative ideas.

Here is a look at some of the trending applications to keep an eye on what customers will be looking to their printers to help them stand out. This is where embellishment can make a big difference — whether they are mainstays in the print catalog, or new applications powered by cutting-edge digital technologies, the right embellishment options can take a piece to that proverbial next level.

  • Direct mail. A perpetual mainstay in the print industry, nevertheless direct mail is seeing a resurgence in recent years. Marketers and brands have realized that direct mail continues to have a much higher engagement than any electronic medium, with consumers responding well to pieces they can see and touch. Embellishments can help take direct mail even further, adding new textures, unique visual effects, and more to help a piece truly stand out and get attention.
6x9 Cosmetics Postcard

  • Packaging. Short run packaging, in particular, has been gaining momentum in the past few years, and that is a trend that is going to continue. The most popular form of short-run packaging is regional versions, with brands looking to have several unique elements that appeal to audiences in different geographic locations. This is where embellishment shines too, offering unique options for individual designs, while helping to maintain an overall consistent branding across the entire run. Foils and embossing, in particular, are popular with short-run packaging applications.
gold foil box

  • Sustainable Printing. While it has been around for a few years, the idea of sustainably printed pieces has gained traction and is only gaining momentum. Younger generations are demanding full transparency from the brands they patronize and that extends to the marketing, packaging, and other printed items produced in support of the product. Shops will need to invest in eco-friendly inks, substrates, and processes if they want to continue to capture this business.

  • Wall Murals and Wallpaper. Both on the commercial and consumer side of things, people are looking for ways to personalize their spaces. Whether it is a business looking to create a welcoming piece of art to pull people into their space, or an individual looking to re-imagine their home or office, wall murals and wallpapers have become hot ticket items in the past year — a trend that isn’t going to fade anytime soon. And as the market continues to expand, using embellishments to add even more unique elements, such as metallics or embossing, will be even more popular.

  • Promotional Products. No longer relegated to pens or coffee mugs, the world of promo marketing is vast. Brands are increasingly looking for ways to stand out and capture attention, both in person and with viral social media attention, so having innovative and unique promotional products can be a powerful tool in their arsenal. Print shops that can step up with not only the capabilities to offer these products, but with ideas for new ways to use them to engage with the audience, will find a great growth opportunity.
Promotional Products for Brand Identity. T-Shirt, Cap, Memory Stick and Mug with Pen, Cap with Company Logo for Advert

Expect to find more brands interested in truly unique, creative ideas that combine several different types of print to form a powerful message. Whether it is a box designed to capture the attention on social media innovators, or a kit to help salespeople connect more easily with prospects — brands are looking for ways to stand out. Think about different materials that can be printed on, such as metal or glass, different shapes or folds that could be used, even elements such as scratch-and-sniff to make printed items more interactive. Any way to make a printed item or package into a one-of-a-kind experience will continue to gain popularity.

denise gustavson

Guest Blogger

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