Taking place in a hotel adjacent to the historic St. Louis Arch, the recent Offset & Beyond conference was full of valuable content and gave both attendees and exhibitors an opportunity to learn. The common theme to the event was quite clear: “question everything.” Question everything you are doing to determine if there is a better way to create it. To deliver it. To produce it. To make it more relevant. The adoption of accessing information via tablets, social media outlets and mobile phones is fueling a rapid change in how we produce and disseminate information. Case in point, I don’t receive breaking news from the newspaper or from a television, for that matter. It comes to me online, via news alerts I’ve set up or over Twitter’s wires. People live tweet important events, both planned and unplanned, they post movies to YouTube in real-time and they upload pictures of to their Facebook pages.
The good news for our industry is that printers are adapting. They are changing the structure of their businesses to take advantage of the opportunities our new world order has brought forth. They are diversifying into new growth areas such as wide format graphics and marketing services and they’re combining print with the myriad of communication vehicles available to us today. The Offset & Beyond conference focused largely on the “beyond,” and I’m excited to see what it brings to our industry.