How the Stimulus Plan Affects the Printing Industry

(Hint: it's not. Not yet, anyway.)

As you probably already know, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is not heavily invested in stimulating the printing industry. Not by a long shot. The Act itself contains few mentions of printing, besides using print ads as small parts of revitalization efforts in other industries.

But what about all that money flowing through these other industries? Some observers are pessimistic about any of it flowing down our way. On Print CEO, Cary Sherburne points to the grim prognosis that most related marketing efforts will happen online. But is this an inevitability? Maybe instead of conceding defeat to digital media, the print industry should do what it does best, and advertise to these stimulus beneficiaries.

We're all talking a big game about personalized and 1:1 printing. Why not use it to target those industries benefiting from the stimulus, and show them how essential print is to any marketing campaign?

I know that when Hotcards wants to get someone's attention, we print for them. We might send some personalized direct mail, or we might design and print them some business cards, or other ad collateral, to show them how good their promotional materials can be. Printing for the community, and creating community through printing, is our favorite method of creating new business, because it works.

Furthermore, an effective marketing campaign should always involve print and digital media, working together to support each other, rather than canceling each other out in some grim either/or scenario. There's no reason to think in black and white about the subject. We are, after all, a full color industry.

The market's down, the field's competitive, jobs are being cut every day, and most of your competitors would slit your throat soon as look at you. What better time to step up our game and go after the business we want, rather than moping as it goes elsewhere…

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