Printing has Last Laugh

Despite Digital Dominance, Event Professionals Still Love Physical Printing.


We are strong advocates for progression.  As trade show’s race forward with the digital revolution it becomes easy to overlook the basic principles that fuel the exhibits industry day to day. We’re talking the tangible product that never seems to die – printing! 

The value of print continues to stay critical in day-to-day operations. Whether it’s printing samples of a custom graphic, filling out a bill of lading, or keeping hard copies for records, paper still serves a strong purpose. Physical printing has also held its own in the marketing world. From large banners to sintra board, physical materials have successfully maintained leverage in an era of digital signage and LED’s. In 2014 76% of small businesses stated their ideal marketing mix was a combination for both print and digital communications. While a 2010 survey reported marketers yielded a $12.57 return for every $1.00 spent. Perhaps companies are just becoming wiser with their paper choices? While it makes sense to save 300 pages for an exhibit manual, many people continue to prefer physical writing for basic operations. 

Paper also holds a sense of elegance that digital has been unable to recreate. Business cards are still traded for professional contacts and hand written notes are back into the mainstream for following-up. Holding that last impression impacts more than scrolling down. If the digital revolution replaces the tangibility of paper, it’s been slow to adopt. Psychologically speaking, we respond to our sense of touch better on paper than a tablet screen. Despite tech companies efforts to texturize keyboards and strokes we are still left with a feeling of digital consumption. This increases in accordance to generational ages. With generation Z becoming the first tablet generation, it could be decades until we see the full replacement of physical print in our industry. Printing products have forced us to view content beyond 140 characters for century’s, and they show no sign of stopping yet. So while we bid farewell to physical paperwork, know the vibrant colors of marketing will continue their foundation in physical form for years to come. At times, we just need something to hold.

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One thought on “Printing has Last Laugh

  • Thanks for the sensible critique. Me and my neighbor were just preparing to do a little research about this. We got a grab a book from our area library but I think I learned more from this post. I’m very glad to see such great info being shared freely out there.

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