Randall Radic

Randall Radic is the author of a number of non-fiction books, including A Priest in Hell and The Sound of Meat. He lives in Northern California

Randall Radic has written 4 articles for SB Informer.
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2013 and Commercial Printing

The outlook for commerical printing is guarded but optimistic.

Randall Radic

December 21, 2012

3.5/5.0 (2 votes total)

Commercial printing goes hand in hand with commerce.  So in that sense, as long as people engage in commerce – doing business – there will be a need for commercial printing. But in real terms, what is the outlook for commercial printing in 2013? Well, to find out I talked with the kind people at Southeastern Printing, which is the third largest commercial printer in south Florida.

Remember the movie Groundhog Day?  Where Bill Murray got caught in a time-warp and kept living the same day over and over again?  Unfortunately, that pretty much what 2013 portends:  more of the same old same old.  A reduced but still too high unemployment rate, banks reluctant to make loans, a little easing in the real estate market – thank goodness.  Gridlock in Congress as both sides try to compromise on a budget to avoid the predicted ‘fiscal cliff,’ Europe continuing on with its financial crises, and a smoldering Middle East situation.

The specific challenges facing the printing industry are: government agencies using tablets instead of printing, along with schools and consumers. These entities and others are beginning to buy into the idea that digital alternatives can and are replacing printing.

According to the printing specialists at Southeastern Printing, the economy has not been acting the way economists thought it would. Usually, when there’s a deep recession or depression, the recovery that follows is of equal or greater strength. But so far, that has not occurred. The recovery is moving forward a snail’s pace rather than forging ahead like a dynamo.

Comparing the recession of 1981-1982 to the recession of 2007-2009 is like comparing apples to oranges. It can’t be done. Because the recovery that followed the earlier recession came on like gang busters, whereas the present recovery has resulted in lower growth rates. The GDP is down significantly, having lost $300 to $450 billion and millions of jobs, depending on whose numbers one chooses to utilize. 

All that being said the people at Southeastern Printing remain optimistic because commercial printing has put the fun back into the printing business. Commercial printing allows for multifarious possibilities when it comes to design, production and printing processes. Part of the fun is determining exactly what it is that customers really want. Are their expectations realistic or not? If not, that’s where the fun comes in. The printer has the opportunity to match quality with expectations.

A lot of Southeastern Printing’s business arrives via the online marketplace.  So they are careful to explain the services they offer – sheet fed printing and flexographic label printing – to prospective clients. And because of their vast satisfied clientele, they never lack for endorsements.

So all in all, even though the economy could co-operate a little more, commercial printing should prove profitable for companies willing to provide excellent service and custom processes. 


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