Sadly interviewing so many people for one feature means that we can’t get under the skin of the individuals in the same way we usually do – but instead it revealed an interesting consensus of a number of views.
Firstly, that the buying community craves a stable and diverse supplier base.
Secondly, that they want their suppliers to come to them with more innovation.
And thirdly they all generally agree that print is having something of a renaissance with marketers and consumers alike.
The first point comes as no surprise, I suppose, after the clear-out and consolidation plays of the past few years, which caused nightmares about trying to prise completed orders from administrators and heightened concerns over the availability of UK capacity in certain markets respectively.
Equally, I should imagine that innovation has always been high on the wish list. Interestingly though it’s not just the creative innovation they were poring over on the judging day they covet, possibly because it’s too often stifled by squeezed budgets, but also innovation in efficiencies and lowering waste and also in areas like working within Royal Mail guidelines.
Most pleasing of all though is the recognition from their clients that print works.
And that’s good news for buyers and good for printers, because it means both groups no longer have to defend the prowess of print and can instead pull together and focus on its possibilities – and let the creativity (and cash) flow more freely.