New whitepapers available

Ricoh has commissioned Smithers Pira to create a series of whitepapers. These look at opporunities for Print Service Providers to open new worlds in a number of key market segments.

Whitepapers available now:

Ricoh Pira whitepaper – Corporate Print: bringing the world in-house

Ricoh Pira whitepaper – Digital commercial print: the new world order

Ricoh Pira whitepaper – Direct Marketing: printing the personal

Ricoh Pira whitepaper – Retail point-of-sale: the new frontier for consumer engagement

Ricoh Pira whitepaper – The new world of publishing with virtual stock

Corporate Zone at drupa

In this zone we’ll be focusing on increased promotional output and print room integration that can grow in-house print services for government, education and ­financial services operations, among others.

Not to be missed

  • examples from a variety of different vertical markets, and use cases for alternative media, transactional print, monochrome printing and banner
  • many promotional print applications in this zone including our rock band merchandise, posters, banners and a T-shirt printed on our Anajet t-shirt printer
  • CAD print and archiving solutions will be featured.
  • Corporate Workflow in action

 Key Applications

These are just some of the samples we are planning to show. Look out for more surprises at the show itself !

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Workflow

Ricoh’s corporate printing workflow solutions optimise printing and output processes across the entire organisation.

Corporate Workflow

 

Ricoh at drupa button

Open New Worlds Photoshoot – Commercial and Corporate Print

The location

The location we selected for the Commercial and Corporate shoot was a strikingly beautiful and dramatically designed home in Wilmslow, Cheshire, UK. The home of a renowned artist, it has been used as the setting for great brands and will feature in a forthcoming series of Cold Feet, the UK TV drama. It also appeared in the March edition of Grand Designs magazine. The house is also right around the corner from Lindow Common, where the body of a mid-first century AD man was found, preserved in a bog. The Lindow Man can be found on permanent display at the British Museum.

In order to accommodate both shoots in one location, we needed flexibility of space, with one room that could be dressed to replicate a fashion student’s bedroom and one that could be used as a gallery space. We were fortunate that the house actually had its own gallery space so we could remove the contents and use gel lighting to create the desired vibrant shades on the wall.

The idea

Commercial Print – we wanted to capture the wonder of seeing colour for the first time, to highlight the breathtaking print quality available through Ricoh’s digital print technology.
So we created an image of someone entranced by amazing colours.

Corporate Print  –
the idea was to focus on a fashion designer of the future, working in their bedroom, to illustrate how Ricoh’s intelligent digital print technology can help universities attract new talent, and enable other corporations to communicate effectively.

 

The Results

A suite of images for the Commercial and Corporate route, to be used throughout the campaign.

How to Drive Efficiency and Savings in your Enterprise Print

Benoit Chaterlard

Benoit Chatelard Vice President, Production Printing Group, EMEA

In today’s print environment, there are more document systems and processes than ever before.  Poorly managed output can lead to resource waste, inefficiency, inaccuracies, and even security issues, as sensitive information is potentially sent to incorrect parties or “orphaned” prints sit on office output trays. These losses are, of course, unacceptable yet they happen all the time.

The need to centralise print and the management of these processes are becoming even more important when organisations want to take control of cost, waste and integrity of their document and information flow.

Introducing Ricoh’s Managing Enterprise Output: One workflow to connect all print and output related processes: office and production

Ricoh’s Managing Enterprise Output (MEO) allows organisations to do this and by centralising print through a dedicated print room or CRD with Ricoh production printers. It either redirects output from systems like SAP or office MFPs, In this way businesses can benefit from improved document costs and efficiencies.

MEO 3D Pie

MEO connects all print and output related processes. Under its umbrella, organisations can connect all print streams, system generated output, and multi-channel communications via one workflow solution. That means one control point to focus on  for all of a customer’s output devices and channels.

Simplicity isn’t MEO’s only strength, though. The software facilitates continuous optimisation of enterprise output by improving visibility into and automation of the critical – if repetitive – processes that drive enterprise output. Automated workflows reduce manual touch points, concomitantly cutting errors and inefficiencies. Additionally, with comprehensive business rules applying least-cost routing, we can ensure that no matter the type of document, our customers can intercept or redirect jobs to find the most cost-effective printer or output channel in the print room or other location.   Also, MEO enables our customers to manipulate jobs to fit their exact output needs, re-engineering documents or executing automated transforms from multiple systems if needed.

Customer success:  Continental Tyre Group

banner 2

Implementing an effective print strategy based on MEO transformed Continental Tyre group’s work processes, improving flexibility and eliminating cost. The benefits:

  • Single workflow solution
  • In-house production facility
  • 70% reduction in printer fleet size
  • Reduction in print volume / cost
  • Central management of print streams

Read the full case study here

Manage both office and production print from a single control center

This offering is particularly helpful in that it is well-suited to help customers efficiently and easily manage both office and production printing environments from a single, effective control center. The level of visibility and management this provides can help customers improve operations across the board – and can help you demonstrate the added value of related hardware, output management software and services.

Find out more

 

Benoit Chatelard
Vice President
Production Printing Business Group

How print is evolving to meet the new needs of the connected world

With more than one-third of the world’s population now online (Pew Research Center), it is little wonder that the role of printed communications is changing. The challenge is that the time spent with various media is rapidly shifting from traditional channels such as radio, TV, and print to internet and mobile channels. This means the role of printed communications must be readjusted and redefined in the broad spectrum of all media.

Time spent on each Media vs Advertising Spend

Time spent on each Media vs Advertising Spend

Not surprisingly advertising dollars are now moving to online and mobile markets. According to PWC Global Entertainment and Media Outlook 2013, internet advertising grew by about 16%, and mobile advertising by 47% in 2013.

This has major implications for key areas of printed communications of interest to Print Service Providers.

Direct mail and direct marketing catalogue volume has suffered at the hands of the recent recession and the rise of electronic media. Although both remain key marketing channels for businesses, they are increasingly being orchestrated alongside digital forms of communications.

Transactional printing – unlike direct mail and catalogues, which are business-driven marketing expenditures, transactional printing is increasingly consumer-driven since recipients dictate their preferred delivery methods

Books – Electronic media has profoundly disrupted the book publishing industry by fundamentally altering the dynamics of how books are sold and consumed. Book publishers and book printers are adjusting to the fast moving realities of the market and tapping new business models enabled by publishing in a multichannel world.

Newspapers and magazines have been impacted by online advertising, rising postal costs, and competition from electronic media. Newspapers and magazines remain widely read and trusted, however, and publishers are finding new and innovative ways to combine print with electronic channels.

Our new white paper, Multichannel Communications The Evolution of Printing in a Connected World,  examines how advertisers and publishers are adapting printed products to multichannel realities in a number of key markets: direct mail and direct marketing catalogues; transactional printing; books; and newspapers and magazines.

Download the white paper here

Ricoh Infographic – the power of Direct Mail

Direct mail is a vital node in the ‘connected world’ we live in. It’s a powerful medium. People like it. Respond to it. Act on it. In a blended campaign, Direct Mail creates an impact that’s more effective than digital marketing alone. In fact, in 2013, Central Mailing Services figures showed that nearly half the UK population responded to traditionally printed direct mail over the past year. Below are the seven reasons why integrating Direct Mail into your next campaign will help you market most effectively today and for many years to come.

  1.  The Mail moment – Consumers regard personalised direct mail as the trusted medium for customer communication
  2. Make People Act – 79% of consumers react to direct mail immediately
  3. The Sensory Experience – Direct Mail has a long shelf life – two thirds of consumers keep their mail
  4. Precision Targeting – top three reasons why people open mail:  contact from known brands and companies (51%), Personally
    addressed (47%), information about products or services of interest 40%
  5. Get creative – structural dimensional mail can have 20 times the penetrating power of flat direct mail
  6. Fantastic ROI –  most important more often than any other touchpoint in the consumer’s purchasing process
  7. Effectiveness – 48% of UK adults have done something in the last 12 months as result of mailing
The Power of Direct Mail

The Power of Direct Mail

 

Ricoh Direct Mail Infographic (PDF)

Find out more about Ricoh’s Solutions for Direct Mail

More statistics about Direct Mail – see: http://www.centralmailing.co.uk/

 

The green colour of money

[GUEST BLOG]

Clare Taylor, Owner, Clare Taylor Consulting

Clare Taylor, Owner, Clare Taylor Consulting

How can being greener help your business?

Where savings can be made?

What can an environmental policy do for you?

Green policies and practices make sound business sense and help you to save money from your bottom line, raise your profile and equip yourself to compete against larger rivals. To make savings, the starting point is measuring to understand where your money goes.

Energy

A significant amount of energy is used for simply running a building full of people, and savings can be made that are independent of the amount of work going through. Good areas to look at are heating, particularly preventing heat losses or waste, cooling and lighting.

Older buildings can be very costly to heat, but simple measures such as draught proofing not only make them more comfortable but also cut your bills. Canny use of controls on boilers and air conditioning can also cut energy waste.

Businesses can save up to 15% of energy costs*

Waste

Waste costs more than just disposal costs – even if you’re being paid for paper recycling, it won’t cover what you’ve paid in purchase and processing costs. The best savings are therefore from prevention, and ways of managing workflows that help you deliver quality will also help you prevent waste.

For unavoidable waste, reuse or recycling is cheaper than paying for disposal. Suppliers may take back containers, there are many waste companies who offer recycling and Local Authorities offer a range of business waste recycling services. A waste audit will help, and some government bodies, as well as waste companies, offer this service.

Businesses can save as much as 25% from the total cost of waste**

Water

Savings can be made on more than just process water used. There are opportunities for reducing domestic water consumption too, which, unless you have very few staff, can quickly pay for themselves.

Savings on water can be as much as 30%***

Policy and promotion

Your environmental policy is your mission statement – stating what your goals are and acting as a framework for action. The action plans behind it, results of measuring and evidence of progress can also be used as the basis for raising your profile: for example, entries for environmental awards.

Customers with environmental programmes of their own will often only add printers to shortlists or preferred customer lists if they have green credentials of their own. It’s not a guarantee of work, but an effective door opener. Being known for what you are doing also helps here and, particularly for companies whose work is mainly local, entering local green business awards can be a very effective way of achieving this.

Green _1_smallStrong environmental programmes will help you punch above your weight by reducing bottom line costs and by taking you above the crowd – but you have to work at shouting out what you are doing as well as at having something to shout about.

To find out more, read our Article – “Pruning costs by going green”

This is available from Ricoh Business Driver or, if you are not a member, request it here.

References:

* Source: Carbon Trust Printing case study CTS094 “We estimate that the sector could cut its energy bills by 15% through basic energy saving measures.”

** Source: 2Degrees Sustainability Essentials: Zero Waste “The true cost of waste is often 3% to 4% of revenues, and it is generally possible to save around 25% of this.”

*** Source: WRAP Saving money through resource efficiency: Reducing water use “Water costs can be between 1 and 2% of a company’s turnover. Savings between 30 and 50% can be achieved by investing in no- and low-cost water reduction techniques and technologies.”

The Future Role of the Print Room to Increase the Speed of Technology-led change

Benoit Chaterlard

Benoit Chatelard General Manager Solutions, Production Printing Group, EMEA

To remain competitive into the future and adapt to technology-led change, organisations need to react faster to changing traditional ways of working.  To be more agile into the future they must review the ways they access, store and distribute business critical information and communicate with clients.  New research conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit, and sponsored by Ricoh, offers interesting insights about the state of play in European organisations when it comes to speed of change.  It is a must read for corporate print room managers seeking to take advantage of opportunities to add more business value and be at the helm of the company’s digital transformation.

It reveals that rapid cultural and technological change has left many European businesses overconfident about the true speed at which their organisation is responding to change.  Business leaders are three times as likely to compare their company to a speedboat (48 per cent) than a super tanker (17 per cent), while believing the opposite of their competitors.  However, three quarters report that they are not reacting to changes fast enough, just 24 per cent can rapidly take advantage of new opportunities or adapt to unexpected changes and only one in three European organisations (29 per cent) can rapidly re-engineer processes to support change.

The reality is, as they seek to change faster, European businesses are facing the triple challenge of a rapidly evolving workforce, technology-led disruption and the deployment of core business processes that ensure change is sustainable.

Such findings expose the opportunities for inhouse print room managers and the role they can play to improve organisational agility and help the business adapt for the future. It’s never been more important to reinforce the reality that the print room or corporate reprographics department (CRD) is no longer a reactive printing and copying service. If given the opportunity, the head of the print room or CRD can add real business value and has a key role to play in helping the organisation to adapt more quickly.  It can manage personalised cross media marketing communications to support product and service sales.  What’s more it can produce business critical documents on demand and act as the central conduit to document management across the organisation.  This is the ideal combination of supporting the business, optimising business critical processes and maximising the use of technology.  The end result will see quicker access to information, increased efficiency and customer responsiveness.

The European business leaders’ clouded view of the real speed of change in their organisations may also be attributed to the challenges and bottlenecks they are facing.  The study shows that the leading barrier to greater agility is the inability to link technology platforms effectively. No doubt this is leading to information silos and playing a key role preventing business leaders from seeing the changes in the company as a whole.

The print room manager can play a part in supporting the organisation to overcome these barriers, by automating and re-engineering document processes through powerful workflows, enabling pre-set business rules to be applied that introduce approvals and other management controls.  And, by gaining the visibility of all these processes, they can introduce tracking and auditability from a centralised system as well as providing the flexibility for future process optimisation as requirements change. Such actions will also give the business leaders a more holistic view of what is really happening in their business and enhance future decision making.

Documents, whether printed or electronic, are at the heart of every organisation and in many cases are transforming the way they sell, communicate and conduct business.  The growing blend of hard copy and digital documents are creating the need for organisations to be able to manage both, in unison. The successful print room managers today are elevating the profile and perception of where they can add value by driving the businesses wider output management strategy.  They are connecting core document technologies and optimising processes to manage data and improve business critical communications, from front and back office.   They are also supporting revenue-generating customer communications. Together these measures can play a leading role in accelerating the speed of change for their organisation to move successfully into the future.

For more insights into the challenge of speed facing European organisations, visit www.ricoh-europe.com/thoughtleadership

The challenge of speed

The challenge of speed

Are you part of the problem or part of the solution?

[GUEST BLOG]

Graham Reed, Print Tribe Consultant, Director of Global Print Strategies

Graham Reed, Print Tribe Consultant, Director of Global Print Strategies

For many years digital printing has promised the cost effective print run of one. You cannot deny that this objective has revolutionised the printing industry forever. The concept of having fully variable content within a short production run sparked the imagination of many marketers and print providers: business cards with our pictures on; flyers that can have content specific to niche target groups; packaging that is personalised to the individual – the opportunities are endless.

However, taking advantage of these new opportunities is more difficult than it sounds. I question the ability of marketers and brand managers to understand the full potential and financial returns that can be achieved from truly personalised one to one communications. Or, is it that print sales people with the “Give me a spec, I’ll give you a price” mentality cannot effectively position the value to leverage a much more compelling proposition that transcends price, and breaks the mould of print as a commodity ?

If we focus on why these new Variable Data Print (VDP) plus Cross Media solutions get rejected by marketers, the objections based on price are a reaction that mask broader, more deep-rooted issues within the culture of their own organisation. This can be twofold:  firstly they just don’t get the concept; or second they just do not have the infrastructure or processes in place to capture and filter their data in a cost effective and joined up way.

Time and time again I hear CMOs and CEOs complain that their data is so poor that they can use it only to vary an address panel and salutation on a simple mailer. So what is the print industry going to do about it? In my view it is our responsibility to lead our clients and educate them on the best practice and benefits from fully personalised print and how it can deliver enhanced commercial outcomes with their outbound marketing and communication projects.

In order to achieve this objective we need to move quickly away from the widespread mentality of competing on price!

To create long-term client engagement with integrated print solutions we need to create a new breed of “Enterprise” salespeople that can structure propositions that add real value to the print process by creating measurable commercial outcomes. Only by becoming the educators and experts with data led technologies can we capitalise on this opportunity.

The next step is to create a compelling “solution architecture” where Data, Cross Media, Web to Print (W2P), Variable Targeted printing is easily understood and relevant to the client’s business. A solution that is truly relevant and specific to a CMO’s needs will deliver outstanding responses and capture additional data that further enriches the process of engaging with the end user.

There is no doubt we have the technology; we just need the skills to sell it differently.

The full report, Time to promote the true value of print, is available to Ricoh Business Driver users. Alternatively, request a copy by completing this form.

Time to promote the true value of print white paper

Transformation strategies for the CRD – a ten point plan

In Ricoh’s latest Business Driver Report,  Transformation strategies for the CRD, published by  Smithers Pira, in association with Ricoh Europe PLC, we outline a 10-point plan for helping CRDs transform. Here is a short summary.

A ten point planBusiness trends may be putting pressure on the CRD but those with the right strategy and ethos can thrive despite the tough economic climate and changing working practices. Even with the impact of today’s technology and demands for print and other media, it is possible to steer a successful course if you follow this 10-point transformation plan for success in the CRD.

1.  Understand the place of the CRD in the overall organisation.

Knowing how your products and services reflect the brand and ethos of the organisation is crucial to proving the worth of the CRD and to maximising its benefit.

2. Behave like a commercial operation.

A service-based philosophy that ensures that jobs are on time, to specification and the highest quality at a realistic price backed with exemplary service ensures other departments support and appreciate the CRD.

3. Keep your production platform relevant.

Changing technologies and market situations may mean it is necessary to change the printers and processes used in house. Many sites have already dropped litho for digital and some are finding it necessary to add wideformat equipment to meet new requirements.

4. Offer more than just print.

Multi-channel communications and cross-media campaigns are now the norm and print needs to prove its own worth and work together with other channels.

5. Understand the importance of software and systems.

Job submission, web-to-print and rules based jobrouting software all enable the inplant to improve efficiency and customer service while also saving costs and providing a layer of management and control.

6. Make sure senior management understand the role of print.

Ensure you have a champion in the C-suite who clearly understands and can help communicate the value of an internal print resource to support the objectives of your brand and the business.

7. Be flexible and work with other departments to deliver value.

In some instances it is not possible to provide all print-related services via the CRD. If your corporate structure means working with other teams such as IT,design, marketing, procurement and legal be prepared to cooperate for the best interest of the business rather than play internal politics.

8. Ensure you have a multi skilled and flexible workforce.

A well trained and flexible workforce ensures you can rise to any production challenge and provide the best advice to customers.

9. Focus on delivering best value.

Consider if print is the right medium, and if so if it is best produced in the CRD, at the point of need in the offices/on the desktop or by a specialist external supplier.

10. Maximise value of being an internal supplier.

Harness the department’s unique position as part of the business with special knowledge of print to align your products and services with brand guidelines and sustainability policies.

The full report, ,  Transformation strategies for the CRD, is available to Ricoh Business Driver users. Alternatively, request a copy by completing this form.

Pirareport