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An inside job

If print for interiors is an area of interest for your company you’ll want to hear what Alberto Masserdotti said at the Fespa Global Summit ahead of the upcoming Printeriors showcase and conference.

Clearly, the interior decor sector is an opportunity for PSPs with digital inkjet print capability. Just as clear is the fact that it’s a sector that presents unique challenges and attributes. As Alberto Masserdotti of Italian diversified digital signage operation The Masserdotti Group said in a talk at the recent Fespa Global Summit, doing your research is vital. It’s not enough to think you can just turn your hand to it.

At the summit, Masserdotti explained how his company managed to make the transition. Having entered the interior decor market in 2006, many years before most in the industry were even talking about the possibilities for digital print in this sector, Masserdotti and his team know what they are talking about. In Italy and around Europe, they’ve pioneered the digital printing industry’s push into this sector, learning and constantly evolving their approach along the way.

The interior decor industry sits at the point where visual design, architecture and engineering meet, something Masserdotti recognised early by investing in great architects, engineers and designers as well as robust print and digital communications technologies - an enlightened approach that has served the company well.

Masserdotti identified the need to clearly differentiate the company from the outset, ensuring that customers and brands saw it as more than ‘just’ a printing service, but rather as a consultative technology and knowledge provider with a focus and passion for only the best service. Masserdotti says customer demands for quality of product and outstanding service are exceptionally high in what is a very fragmented market, so printers moving into the interior design sector have to get both right from the start.

This also means not just diversifying the markets you are approaching but the products and services you are providing to those sectors. Doing your research and finding what these sectors need, what the trends are and what is working for them - in terms of both print and other visual communications products.

And here’s an interesting fact. In many of the Masserdotti Group’s traditional sectors, the customer mix was 80% agency, 20% brands. But, its experience in the interior decor sector has turned this on its head, to 80% brands and just 20% agencies in only a couple of years. This alone is evidence that digital printers wanting to diversify into this sector need to first seriously consider their approach and ensure it is in line with the needs of the primary customers in this sector.

Printeriors 2016 - taking place as part of Fespa Digital in Amsterdam in March - will demonstrate interiors print ideas via 16 room sets. The Printeriors hotel showcase will present print applications via lounge, bathroom and bedroom sets through to cafes, bars, meeting rooms and shops. A one-day Printeriors conference (100 Euro non-Fespa association members, 70 Euro for members), aimed at both printers and creatives, will also take place on Thursday 10 March.

Presented in the form of a hotel, the 16 room sets aim to illustrate both the expanding diversification opportunities available to wide-format printers and to inform and inspire visitors from the various design communities. The showcase will be located in hall 6, within Fespa Digital, and take up 600m2. At the time of going to press Fespa was not divulging details of the room sets in terms of who would be producing the actual print to be used within them, but Fespa divisional director Roz McGuinness said: “There are numerous possibilities for printers in this sector including walls, floor coverings, textiles, furniture and accessories. For 2016 we have chosen a hotel theme so that we can highlight the different techniques and applications that can be created using print across a number of interior environments. It will cover the complete gamut from ceramic tiles in bathrooms to printed cushions and curtains in the lounge or bedroom. The Printeriors showcase and conference will once again provide both printers and designers a place to visualise how print can transform ordinary interiors into the extraordinary.”

To gain free entry to Printeriors go to www.printeriors.net and use promotional code APOZ0701.

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