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Case Studies / Articles

Will 3D Printing Have a Larger Economic Impact than the Internet?

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19With our increasingly technological world, we have made countless advances to daily life.. including in the print industry with 3D printing. So many new technological advances raise the question… what will the world be like in the future? Could 3D printing have a larger impact on the economy than the internet did?

Looking back to the late 1990s when the Internet first began, it would have been hard to imagine the impact it would have and what advances it would make for our society. One computer used to be the size of a whole room; now it fits in your hand and people carry it around everywhere. New technologies such as 3D printing are comparable to the start of the internet. Its impact on our future is completely unknown, and the possibilities could be limitless. Granted, it will take time for 3D printing to become “the new internet,” but we are in the midst of exponential growth within the industry. Only time will tell.

http://3dprint.com/55334/3d-printing-economy/

“Marketing Budgets Set to Raise”

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Good news for the marketing industry!

Marketing officers are becoming increasingly optimistic about the economy, more optimistic than they have been in the past six years! CMOs are more confident and “corporate marketing budgets are expected to increase an average of 8.7% this year, thanks in part to a strong U.S. economy, according to the semi-annual Chief Marketing Officer Survey released recently by Duke University, the American Marketing Association and McKinsey & Co.”  (Advantages April 2015). With the economy becoming more stable, marketing officers are more willing to increase their budgets and utilize marketing tools more frequently.

That being said, their efforts are leading to increases in customer acquisition, customer retention and customer purchase volume. In turn, recent activity has led to increased entry of new customers into the market. Now that the economy has stabilized, buyers are no longer placing as much emphasis on price. According to the CMO Survey by Duke University, “CMOs believe low prices won’t be as important to buyers as things like excellent service, superior product quality and trusting relationships. Business-to-consumer services companies will likely see the biggest marketing boost this year” (Advantages April 2015). The marketing industry is on the rise!

Check out the article in Advantages Magazine!

advantages

Traditional Marketing Works!

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Technology today is advancing and evolving exponentially, changing the world around us in every way. So, it’s no surprise that we forget the way we did things in the past. But the fact is, new doesn’t always mean better. Today’s age of technology and the growing social media presence has affected the way relate to each other and the way we do business, good and bad. Society says technology and social media is essential to your business plan, so you might feel pressured to utilize a social media plan. Though this may in fact increase new business, you may be neglecting old tactics that are proven to be successful.

Using promotional products is tried-and-true marketing strategy that you may have overlooked. A simple T-shirt, pen or coffee mug could leave a lasting impression that leads to new and repeat business. Business cards, signs, brochures, advertising specialties, sales materials and newspaper ads are six great marketing tactics you once knew but may have forgotten.

Read more about these “low-tech, low-touch, low-cost” marketing strategies that will boost sales and get you new customers in the article below!

http://www.app.com/story/money/business/2015/03/30/small-business-marketing/70568364/

What items should you choose to distribute at trade shows?

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Using promotional products is great for your marketing campaign, but how do you know how to choose the right ones?

In a trade show with tens or hundreds of vendors, you want to be the one that people remember most. Today’s business promotional products go far and beyond the typical pen, magnet or coffee mug. It is important to make a high impact impression, but you don’t have to break the bank to do it if you follow the latest trends in promotional products and find what works best for trade shows.

Cool, new tech items are the latest trend, so choosing a power bank, power charger or another tech item would be a great trade show item. It is important that you choose a trade show item that you know people will use. The more someone will use the product, the more they will see your name. Options of different price points should also be a factor in choosing items. Most importantly, invest in a quality item that will make a great impression.

Read more great tips about trade show items in the article below.

http://www.bizjournals.com/bizjournals/how-to/marketing/2015/03/how-to-choose-the-best-promo-products.html?page=all

21 Great Benefits of Promotional Items

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Utilizing promotional products is a low cost, high impact marketing strategy businesses should definitely consider. Promotional items create lasting impressions and are often more cost effective than TV, radio, and magazine ads. If you need more convincing, check out the article below for 21 great benefits of promotional items!

http://www.thespec.com/shopping-story/5477916-from-t-shirts-to-trophies-21-great-benefits-of-promotional-items/

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Promotional Products: The Key Ingredient to Integrated Marketing

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People prefer promotional products, remember them more, and have a more positive attitude towards them versus television ads! Promotional products are more credible and lead to more referrals than other forms of advertising.

Many traditional forms of advertising and promotion are losing ground to newer media. This trend presents opportunities for the promotional products medium. However, very little research exists documenting the effectiveness of promotional products when compared to and combined with other traditional forms of advertising such as television and print.

To further research this, a study utilizing the most critical demographic group ages 18-34 years was conducted for PPAI by researchers at Louisiana State University and University of Texas at San Antonio. Those in the 18-34 age group are among the hardest for marketers to reach, one that nicely coincides with the population available in a university setting. From an advertising perspective, this audience is usually highly desirable.

Follow the link below to read more about the study! 

http://www.ppai.org/inside-ppai/research/Documents/PR7A771_SalesPowerTool.PDF

Environmentally Responsible Print

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“As an industry we need to continue to remind our customers that the forest/paper/print industry is both environmentally responsible and sustainable. This video is powerful and it is portable!”

 

Is My Design Print Ready

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We have seen many amazing, unique, and eye catching graphic designs everywhere from business cards, envelopes, letterheads, banners, flyers, packaging, and a wide variety of other forms. We have seen the incredible amount of work put into these artworks and have yet to ask ourselves one question…

Is my artwork print ready?

For the more experienced designers, we have learned to practice the same routine with every work we have designed… from the bleeds, to the color modes, file formats, text, print resolution, and a final check.  Usually when you are following guidelines to assure that your file is print ready, you typically find yourself doing fewer changes or even no changes at all to make sure that it is print ready. To ensure your artwork is print ready, always remember the following:

  • Check all artwork for any spelling mistakes or grammar errors, as well as ensuring that the images that are used are at high res and edited or retouched to your desired liking. Usually, a few rounds of checking for all correct information or any errors would help reach the turnaround deadline of the project.
  • If there are any bleeds (design that travels off the page as part of the design), be sure to keep in mind that the art will be trimmed off the finished product. Keeping the text within a safe zone and away from the edge (usually away from the trim edge by about 8-10mm for best results) and using a 2mm bleed area on each edge is the best practice.
  • Printing resolution makes your finished printed product look beautiful. Always make sure that your artwork’s resolution is at least 300dpi (sometimes 200+ dpi will work too, but always keep in mind that the higher the resolution, the better the quality).
  • File formats are also a big factor in creating a print ready file. If you supply your artwork in unknown file types, then it’s harder for the printer to produce this product on time, if they can’t open the file. If you flatten to a .jpg or a .tiff file, this also guarantees that there will be no font issues, when the artwork is checked (not every computer carries the same font). Common formats that are usually used are Quark, Illustrator, Photoshop, Corel, or InDesign. Vector files such as an .eps and pdf’s are becoming more popular and common for better end product file formats.
  • The color modes can be a big factor as well. There is a big difference between RGB and CMYK. RGB is only meant for viewing on the web, while CMYK are print ready colors. Please also remember that monitors have different output on colors. Having the correct pantone or CMYK color ensures that it is the correct desired color. Always double check to make sure that your colors are correct before you send them out to print.
  • ALWAYS REMEMBER to do a final check before sending out your file to the printer. Make sure that the final check has everything as expected, because once the print is a go, everything is printed the way it was sent (via latest file sent to printer).

I hope that after reading these points you will have the best practice in you to ensure that you do not encounter any issues when having your product printed. So now ask yourself this question every time you are about to send your artwork, “Is my artwork print ready?”

The Future of Branding

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•    Building emotional connection will be key
•    Brands will focus more on creating/engineering the total customer experience
•    Customer-relevant innovation will be a key success factor
•    Outstanding customer service will also be a key success factor
•    Hiring the right employees and creating the appropriate culture will be essential
•    More and more, brands will co-create the customer experience with the customer
•    More and more, brands will need to “stand for something” to survive
•    Strong brands will not only “stand for something,” they will also provide forums for people who believe in what the brands stand for
•    Organizations whose employees become consultants to and friends and partners with their customers will be the most successful
•    One-on-one marketing will become more and more important
•    The Internet will also become increasingly important as a brand building vehicle
•    For larger organizations, customer relationship management (CRM) will become a critical success factor
•    Fast, flexible and agile organizations will increasingly “win” in the digital age.

 

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