AUDIO: Brand Owners Discuss Their Digital Needs
If recent brand and consumer trends are any indication of what's to come in the future, it would be safe for package printers to expect to see continued growth in craft, artisanal, and otherwise small brands. Considering the small batches of product these brands produce, the need for short runs of packaging will continue to rise, providing more opportunity for digitally printed packaging. At the fourth-annual Digital Packaging Summit, held Nov. 5-7 in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., representatives from three of these smaller-sized brands took the stage to discuss the impact digitally printed packaging has had on their businesses. But before diving into the technology, each brand representative discussed strategies package printers can take when approaching a small brand.
As boutique brands become increasingly popular among consumers, the craft beer market has been booming. In fact, Lisa Gregor, co-founder of Itasca, Ill.-based Church Street Brewing Co., says that there are approximately 250 craft breweries in the Chicago area alone. But in order to successfully sell labels and packaging to these breweries, Gregor said it's essential for printers to make themselves visible.
Similarly, Eddie Simeon, a co-founder of Hella Cocktail Co., a producer of premium cocktail bitters, mixers and syrups, detailed one of the most impressive packaging pitches his company had experienced. He explained how one packaging supplier approached him at an industry event with a Hella Cocktail POS display already mocked up. This type of preparation, Simeon said, was both impressive and compelling enough to spur further conversation.
While the food and beverage market segments are home to several of these types of small brands, there is additional opportunity in industrial and even non-consumer facing markets. Calvin Osterberg, director of purchasing and facilities maintenance for specialty chemical manufacturer Rochester Midland Corp., described the importance of supply chain management in his business. Package printers that can demonstrate their ability to assist with the company's supply chain, he said, will be at an advantage when pitching digital solutions.