Thinking Out of the
Box: A Fresh Approach to Harnessing Digital Technology for the POP
POP displays have become
one of the most powerful tools available to advertising and marketing
agencies for consumer goods. Since more than 70% of buying decisions are
taken at the point of purchase, the rewards for successful POP displays
are enormous. Remarkably, it’s not just low-priced goods that are sold
using POP displays, which is why demand for them continues to grow at
25% per year, requiring breakthrough production technologies.
The Challenges of
Effectively Producing POP Displays
customers confronted with a barrage of signs, printed packaging,
advertising, billboards and other exhortations to buy, what is it that
makes POP displays so effective, and how can that knowledge be used to
maintain the momentum?
POP Displays should address the many obvious answers: size, shape,
colour, orientation of the product displayed, and the simple fact that
POP displays are often life-size and literally in your face. As such,
compromising on text and image quality and vibrancy, as well as
finishing is unacceptable. Behind the obvious, there are, of course,
many more subtle, and carefully controlled processes going on.
the appeal of temporary POP displays is their novelty. Optimum size,
shape, colour, content and distribution require careful planning to
preserve this advantage. In order to have a POP display that addresses
the product supplier’s need in the most efficient way, it should be
focused, unique and tailored to the customer profile. As such, the most
effective campaigns may comprise displays numbering from only a few
dozen up to several thousand units.
displays are also timely. Part of their appeal is that they are
ephemeral and designed for a relatively short life. Campaigns can then
be short, sharp and focused for maximum impact. However, to achieve a
cost-effective supply chain – especially when unit numbers are low –
production and distribution have to be carefully coordinated.
solution should be economical both to the advertiser and to the POP
display producer. The number of POP displays needed to be calculated and
costed to determine optimal distribution and pre-use storage costs.
Media and ink must be suited to the intended purpose. Durability,
strength, colour reproduction and matching, and price are all factors
here. For indoor applications, corrugated board is often used, and for
food environments, water-based pigmented inks will have an advantage.
The size of the display can vary from a small dispenser to an over-sized
cereal box, ten feet tall.
of the game is flexibility in being able to address the marketing
managers’ message and the agencies’ concepts in a POP space.
leveraging new business models
Just as the POP display
has revolutionised promotional marketing, so digital technology has
delivered the versatility and speed required to serve the new
applications for corrugated and other POP Display printed materials.
Vision CORjet Premium is a six colour press, being the only inkjet that
provides high quality print using water-based pigmented inks, that have
been certified for use on food packaging. The CORjet Premium
incorporates a print controller and RIP, a fully automated loader, the
press and drying unit, and automated un-loader. Capable of imaging as
many as 29 160cm x 320cm (63”
sheets up to 10mm thick per hour at resolutions up to 600dpi, the CORjet
Premium opens new market opportunities for corrugated production,
including the POP display market. In addition to corrugated board, the
CORjet Premium can also print on other substrates such as foam board,
styrene or fluted polypropylene.
heart of the Scitex Vision CORjet Premium is the unique Aprion inkjet
technology that uses specially designed heads, arranged in an array to
ensure fast, even coverage on a wide variety of substrates. Using
patented drop-on-demand piezo-electric technology, each head has 512
nozzles firing 30,000 perfectly formed drops per second.
POP and Packaging
Production in Pennsylvania
Graphics, of Yeadon, Pennsylvania (just outside Philadelphia),
exemplifies the new thinking that digital technology has brought to the
sometimes staid world of corrugated converting.
1966 as a plate making trade shop for corrugated converters, VT Graphics
seized the digital opportunity in 2004 with the purchase of a Scitex
Vision CORjet press, a Kongsberg DCM digital die-cutter and a 60” GBC
laminator. The capabilities of this combination were recognized and led
to the formation of Digital Impact, a new VT Graphics operation to
produce POP displays for the promotional packaging market.
to Bob Mormile, President of VT Graphics, the goal is to focus on
production runs of 150 – 500 saleable units.
equipment makes high-quality, short-runs cost-effective,’ says Bob
Mormile. ‘This is an area where there is a lot of interest and
runs are possible,’ he explains, but 1500 units is about as short a run
that can be printed conventionally at acceptable costs.’
Impact’s business by VT Graphics is focused on corrugated board, mostly
D and E flute, though it will handle other substrates on request.
maker of flexographic plates, we were looking for ways to expand our
business without getting into competition with our customers, the
corrugated converters,’ Bob says. ‘The Scitex Vision CORjet has enabled
us to do that. Short-run printing isn’t something that flexographic
printers want to do, and sample-making and trial versions are
traditionally time-consuming and very expensive.
strategy has been to provide a service to our existing customers that
they can sell on to their customers,’ Bob says. ‘Samples and trial
versions are cheaper when printed digitally, and once a design is
agreed, we have a good shot at getting the plate making business for the
business is not just about samples and trials; it’s about developing
that 500 – 1500 unit market and creating more opportunities for the
end-user. Using the Scitex Vision CORjet’s variable data printing
capability, POP displays can be tailored for specific retailers, stores
and neighborhoods. Unique copies can be run seamlessly one after the
other, or as part of longer run of identical units.
addition to selling to packaging converters, Digital Impact is building
its direct sales business, too.
exciting venture,’ comments Bob. ‘We have something new to sell, and so
do our customers. Offering the fast-turnarounds that the Scitex Vision
CORjet can deliver, combined with the digital die-cutting and laminating
facilities, means that we’re a one-stop shop that customers can buy into
direct, or through the converters.
a full service,’ Bob Mormile states. ‘A customer can ask for 500
displays, packed 5 to a carton with tear-tapes, and shipped to 50
locations, and we can do it all.’
Graphics also offers the assurance of a company that’s been in business
for fifty years, and has an experienced team that includes 14 artists
who use their expertise in colour technology to ensure the best results,
whether in digital or conventional production.
around the world like VT Graphics and its Digital Impact operation are
‘thinking digitally’ and discovering the profitable possibilities of
large format inkjet printing on rigid substrates. Whether opening new
markets, or offering new services to old ones, corrugated printing and
converting will never be the same.
information, please contact Carlyn Samuel at +44 1737 2152000 or visit
the web site at
United Engravers Wins Safety Award, Unveils Digital Technology Path
United Engravers is proud to announce the
successful installation and startup of their new Digital plate making
system, the Cyrel Digital Imager. The CDI and its corresponding
software received its first test in the early spring – United Engravers
was asked to manipulate high-quality carton artwork into 6-color
modified process printing on high-holdout microflute board. In the end,
the customer was pleased with the accuracy and richness of color in the
brand-sensitive logo, and United was pleased with the smooth transition
of Digital technologies into their workflow against an aggressive lead
time. United Engravers has translated this and other early
accomplishments into their daily production for use in both high- and
low-end applications. United Engravers looks forward to continued
advancements as Digital procedures become more prevalent in our
Additionally, this spring United Engravers
was honored to receive the Platinum Safety Award from their insurance
provider, Ohio Casualty Group. The award, issued February 7, 2005,
congratulates United Engravers on a year-long outstanding safety record
for Business Auto, Employee Benefits, Commercial Multi-Peril, Commercial
Excess Liability, and Workers Compensation Claims. United Engravers’
employees enjoyed a catered company luncheon on April 13, 2005 to
celebrate. During the ceremony the award was officially presented to
Vice-President Peter C. Cappas by Jim Jones, the Safety Consultant for
Ohio Casualty Group.
For more information, please contact
Jeanne N. Price, United
Engravers Inc. at (847) 301-5238, or
DF Printing First in China to Adopt Chemistry-Free
CtP. High-End Shop Says Quality and Trends Were Deciding Factors.
just announced that BDF Printing Company, located in Wenhou, Zhejiang
Province, People's Republic of China, will be the first in the nation to
adopt the :Azura chemistry-free system. The medium-sized, high-end
printer chose chemistry-free CtP because of the inherent increase in
quality derived from chemistry-free processing. And because Managing
Director Mr. Sun Jian Shun believes chemistry-free is the obvious trend
For more information,
www.agfapress.com or please contact Jeff
Lewis, Media Relations Manager for Graphic Systems, North America at
201-440-2500 x4192 or email