One of the key themes to emerge from Canon’s latest independent Insight Report Building your future with print is that Print Service Providers (PSPs) are increasingly aware of the need to adapt to the modern communications landscape, but often struggle to find ways to facilitate this change. While supplier support and guidance are often vital, the enabler for change may be closer to home than many think – their business plan.
According to the report, however, only 48 per cent¹ of commercial printers and 32 per cent² of in-house printers surveyed have a formal or informal marketing/business development plan in place, and among those who do, less than half carry out a quarterly (or more frequent) review. Considering 80% of PSPs acknowledge they need to change the way they do business, this low percentage of print operations with an active business plan is a worrying statistic.
These results, while a potential cause for concern, are not entirely surprising. Evaluating a business strategy and identifying areas of development can be a time, cost and resource heavy process which, understandably, PSPs struggle to finance due to budget constraints; especially if it requires the development of their business into unchartered waters, such as incorporating new added-value services such as multi-channel.
Fortunately, this is where print manufacturers can step in to help. More than half of PSPs surveyed (55 per cent³) look to their manufacturers for business development support, and partners such as Canon are well-positioned to provide this through such initiatives such as its Business and Innovation Scan and the Essential Business Builder Program.
It’s important to remember that by working more closely with the right supplier, PSPs can receive invaluable analysis of where their business is, and identify bottlenecks and growth opportunities that can underpin success now and in the future.
¹,² Insight Report 2014 page 10; Do you have a marketing (or business development) formal or informal?
³ Insight Report 2014 page7/ppt slide 6; You look to your suppliers to provide business development support.