Karstedts Digital Packaging Spotlite: The Perception of Brand Owners on the Cost of Digital Packaging
In our recent webinar with Package Design Magazine titled: Should Digital Printing be Part of Your Brand Strategy? we spoke to over 400 attendees who were looking for better understanding of the capabilities and uses of digital printing for packaging. The questions around using digital printing for packaging as part of a brands strategy are being asked in more and more conference rooms and are ones that many still do not have a clear answer to. One of the key reasons the answer is elusive is there is often not a clear understanding of the need for digitally printed packaging from inside the company. And in the cases where there is a clearly defined need, acting on that need leads to ambiguous or conflicting paths to addressing the needs.
Questions on the Cost of Digital Printing:
From the questions submitted by attendees we were struck by the fact that only 6 percent centered on the cost of digitally printed packaging. This is interesting because historically most Brand Owner pushback to digital printing was due to the premium price short run digital packaging required over those delivered through historical channels. Most of the pushback came from purchasing and procurement functions that were focused on the “piece price” of the package not having visibility to the whole process. Does this mean that Brand Owners are now shifting away from this historical micro view of digital pricing? Jim Goldman of Global Innovation Professionals presentation addressed this issue very nicely in the webinar.
In speaking with Julie Okon, Publisher of Package Design Magazine about these responses she suggested another viewpoint, “because of all the applications questions, it may be that Brand Owners want to know if their packaging can be produced digitally and then they will ask how much it costs”. The vendor side of the digital printing industry has been working very hard to focus the cost question on the overall cost of the process rather than the cost of the package. But with procurement and purchasing functions being hammered to cut budgets and operations functions measured by sticking to budget and efficiency, looking at the larger picture of packaging cost is easier said than done.