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Keeping an eye on the many opportunities for print in an online landscape

The future of print at Graphics Canada ExpoI heard that Bill Gates reads 50 books a year! 

He’s always learning. Our marketing technology landscape is evolving so fast it feels like you need to read the equivalent of a book a week to keep up with it. But it’s a fun part of the job.

At Prime Data, we’ve recently made “always learning” one of our core values. We’re just completing an internal contest where employees earn points each time they complete a learning activity, be it an online course, shadowing a colleague, webinar, visiting a vendor or teaching something. The competition for the prizes has been intense. And we’ve all been reminded of the importance of lifelong learning. (If you’re unconvinced, take a look at The Economist’s cover story.)

We’re learning from others in our industry too. I’m really looking forward to the upcoming Graphics Canada Expo from April 6 to 8, when we will get to see what’s new.

The Graphics Canada Expo is where the best and brightest from the graphics, print and postal industries come together to meet, share and learn. And this year’s event in Mississauga promises to be another excellent event.  

One of the highlights for me is the G7 Summit – A Conference of IDEAlliance. This is a free-to-attend part of the expo, but does require advanced registration. If you are a colour print junkie like myself, it’s the best bet to get information you can use to plan for the year ahead.

I’m looking forward to seeing what our friends at Delphax have come up with lately. One of the most significant investments we made in the last few years was the elan printer from Delphax. As the first in Canada to use this technology for variable print marketing, I can attest to what a powerful a leap it was for our clients who send highly effective completely customized, colour, variable print projects. Quite simply, it was so far ahead of everything else that it changed the way many of our clients thought about printed communication. It’s a great example of the kind of innovation you’ll see at Graphics Canada Expo.

Bacon and eggs with NAMMU on the side

Another highlight? The National Association of Major Mail Users (NAMMU) breakfast (it’s free, too). I’m a board member so I might be a bit biased on this one. But we’re always looking to recruit others who are interested in participating in positive conversations with Canada Post. We make up a superteam of industry insiders that meets regularly with Canada Post with the goal of improving services, delivery, operations and simplifying mail processing. If this sounds like the type of positive-minded advocacy you’d like to be a part of, then join us for breakfast on Thursday April 6th. Contact me for an invite.

Girls Who Print – hosted by Deborah Corn

Last, but certainly not least, is the Annual Girls Who Print Panel. This is an event that past attendees of GraphExpo in the U.S. will be aware of. But this is the first year it’s made its way north of the border. I’m especially happy to see Prime Data alum Joanne Hisey as one of the panelists, along with one of our favourite print heroines, Audrey Jamieson of Marketing Kitchen.

So if you’re active in the graphics, print or printed communication spaces I hope to see you there!

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