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Innovation is key to continued business success as this magazine espouses on a frequent basis. Within the busy online corridors of Fespa's Wide Network there has been an ongoing discussion on the topic too. So just what do we mean when we talk about innovation? There are various definitions.

Fespa has set out 'Eight Steps to Innovation' to encourage wide-format entrepreneurs to embrace innovation more actively as part of their strategy for future growth. Ahead of June's 'innovation' themed Fespa Munich, sales and marketing director Marcus Timson has warned that: "Innovation can be intimidating for entrepreneurs, especially when they are steering their businesses out of an economic downturn, with the inevitable focus on efficiency and cost- and cash- management that brings."

NOT JUST ANOTHER BRICK IN THE WALL

Digital Imaging Services is making money from its creativity and project management as much as from print by producing stunning visual campaigns, such as this enormous brickwork vinyl and metal 'graffiti'.

Tackling climate change

We're not talking about the environment - but the new business climate. Given that we now operate in what's been described as a 'new normal', what can we expect to face in terms of finance and investment challenges in 2010, and what can we do about them? BPIF director of corporate affairs, Andrew Brown, gives his view.

Five print chiefs and OgilvyOne's head of offline production sat down together to explore the issues surrounding its slow take-up and potential growth. Here's their take on the matter.

Go Future Gazing

at Sign and Digital UK, where the UK wide-format industry does business.

The UK's premier sign making and digital printing event returns to the Birmingham NEC on the 13th, 14th and 15th April 2010.

W2P: A BRINGER OF BUSINESS

Love or loath it, W2P is a great way to get more work, and its absence a great way to lose it, so should you learn more about it?

Playing the generation game

Successful selling has always been predicated on an accurate understanding of the customer and his needs but are your sales professionals in step with the new buyers? Consultants Peter Lancaster and Jacky Morgan explain what you need to do to attract them.

WISH YOU HAD W2P?

Is Web-to-print part of your service offering or are you one of the many wide-format print producers who see no value in it? If you're the latter, you're missing out.

There's a certain reluctance among large-format printers to use W2P - largely because it's felt it drives prices down, there's a preference to do bespoke business on a face-to-face basis and there are concerns over the level on cash and commitment it will require. But online is how many of your potential customers want to do business, so are you dismissing it too readily? Here's what five print companies have to say about their experiences with W2P.

Photos from a phone take off at Heathrow

Prepare to be stunned if you are visiting Terminal 5 at Heathrow airport before next summer - and I'm not just talking about the beauty of the building itself, but of the huge panoramic prints you will see inside. Tasked by photographer Henry Reichhold to print and install his experimental mobile phone pictures in an enormous 3.5 x 50m exhibition space, Skyline Whitespace has delivered a true large-format photographic spectacle.

Slash and burn

Cost cutting is still high on most company agendas, but it's all too easy to do long term damage for short term gain. Follow these pointers for a more sustainable process. 

Dare to be different

 To market its bespoke printed furniture Digital Plus is showing off its wares and taking orders at a bookshop. Co-founder Owen Russell explains the rationale.

Where are we going to?

In its new report Novel Applications for Printing Technologies, PIra takes an in-depth look at novel printing methods and potential markets over the next 15 years. Here, the report's author, Sean Smyth, looks at future possibilities for wide-format inkjet printing.

Time to call in the experts

 DIY is all well and good but sometimes you need outside expertise. Vision in Print provides just that via its business improvement programme which gives you the framework to build a more streamlined and efficient business.

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