Digital Printing of Promotional Products
One of the major changes in promotional branding technology in the last ten years has been the uptake of previously hard to find and expensive digital print processes. While digital printing has moved to take a stranglehold in the traditional mass ink on paper markets the ability of the technology to penetrate the promotional market has been limited by the technical and skill deficit. With further research, improvements in inks and the ability of computer systems to manage and run the printing process digital promotional products printing is quickly gaining a foothold in the world of promotional marketing.
Traditionally product printing technologies like pad printing and screen printing are costly and ineffective when it comes to multi-coloured printing. Traditional offset printing was undercut by digital technologies largely because of the short-cuts available in using digital processes which don't require multiple passes through a press for each base colour, nor is there a need to produce individual plates for each of the CMYK colour components. These savings on up-front costs initially made digital technology a clear cut winner in printing technology on small orders,. As economies of scale took more and more business from the traditional printing suppliers the ability of digital printing to compete on larger runs also came to the fore. This vicious cycle of cost and market share is still conspiring to this day to make the traditional worlds of printing different to the boom industries they had been for centuries.
In the last five years the ability for digital printers to apply multiple ink colours to a 3 dimensional surface has increased exponentially as the existing print technologies are upgraded and modified to take advantage of market opportunities. It's now a far simpler process to print a plastic pen in multiple colours with a digital press than it is with the traditional pad printing technique. One of the great problems which have always faced printers when reproducing artwork in multiple colours is registration, which refers to the relative position and alignment of each of the colours being applied to build up the profile of the final image reproduction. If the colours are not aligned to a fraction of a millimetre the colour density, saturation and hue match will be far from that intended by the designer. With a digital printing system all the ink is applied in a single pass so the cost of multiple press runs and the difficulty of alignment, trapping and registration do not come into play.
The great cost advantage that digital printing technology has over traditional systems is that a full colour logo print can be applied in the same time as a single colour is produced using traditional methods. The advantages of companies which are logo proud are obvious and as far as innovations in the promotional products industry go, digital print technology is one of the great innovations currently changing the way the business operates.
Promotional Items For Which Digital Printing is Commonly Used Include:
Pens, Stationery, Notepads, Folders, Keyrings, Flash Drives, Pencils, Mugs & Cups....... and hundreds of others