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Wed, Jan

Are you working from home, and will you continue to do so more regularly even when this pandemic is over? I ask in light of data from New Street Consulting Group - see today’s news story. What about the rest of your staff – are you already re-evaluating their on-site working requirement or playing a waiting game?

A company called Pencil has launched online video advertising that is able to learn via AI technology, and thus deliver better results for brands. Over 10 million advertisers bought over $80bn worth of Facebook ads last year, and all indications are for growth. How do you feel about how online ad. development is likely to impact printed advertising spend.

 

At the end of last year Imageco received part funding from the European Regional Development Fund and the Northern Powerhouse Growth Deal to replace the remaining half of its 2800m2 factory with LED lighting - an investment that MD Nathan Swinson Bullough says will pay for itself in three years. More importantly, he adds, it equates to another huge reduction in the company’s CO2 emissions. The point of telling you this is that, as he recently pointed out to his LinkedIn pals, there are lots of grants available for projects like this - so as customers focus more on the environmental credentials of their supply chain perhaps now’s a good time to investigate?

Wishing I could take the question mark from the above, and hoping that the answer is a resounding ‘yes’ from the majority of you. Here’s to a 2021 brimming with possibilities and to a sector capable of turning opportunity into reality.  

As I sign off for the Christmas/New Year break I’d just like to wish you all some quality downtime - we all need time to recharge before we head into a post-Brexit Britain and all that 2021 holds for us. I’ll be back with your next newsletter on 7 January. Until then….enjoy!

The majority of UK business owners are optimistic that the UK government will be able to strike a Brexit deal with their European counterparts according to a poll of 5,000 businesses by MarketFinance last week. As 31 December looms ever closer what do you want out of a deal - or no deal, for that matter?

So, it’s the season of good cheer! Well I’ll raise a glass to the concept, and in the hope that as the year turns so do many a struggling company’s fortunes. It would be amiss of me not to acknowledge that it’s going to be a bleak midwinter for lots of businesses struggling not only with Covid-19 ramifications, but also with trying to understand what a post-Brexit Britain means for their operations.

Let me leave you with a few inspirational words stolen from Rudyard Kipling: ’If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs…’ You can do it. Keep calm, carry on - and may you have a happy Christmas.

Ha, so the Pantone colour of the year is grey! To be specific its Pantone 17-5104 Ultimate Gray plus 13-0647 Illuminating (yellow), “a marriage of colour conveying a message of strength and hopefulness that is both enduring and uplifting.” The combo makes me feel slightly queasy to be honest, much like 2020 - so perhaps it’s spot on.

So it's official - Fespa Global postponed again - to October 2021. Do you think we're likely to see any 'bounce-back' at all on the exhibitions front in general in Europe in the first half of 2021?

 

This is not your usual industry-focussed editor’s message, but I received a press release this morning that gave me a laugh - so I thought I’d pass on the merriment! Apparently there’s now a smart app that helps you slash your energy bill by charging your electric vehicle at the lowest possible tariff, and earn cashback by offsetting each kWh you smart charge against the British energy grid. Was thinking it might be useful info in regards to your delivery fleet – then saw it only applies to the Tesla, Jaguar I-Pace or a BMW i3. Oh well….

Do we need more women in this industry? With the inaugural  ‘Women in Sign and Graphics UK’ running today it seems a pertinent question. Indeed, what do you think about diversity in general in this sector - is there enough of it? If you have strong opinions, one way or another, please let me know.

As we come towards the close of 2020, trade exhibition organisers are being bullish about physical events going ahead in 2021. We’ll have to wait and see - but even if they do, will you attend? A poll (by FuturePrint and Ricoh) of 139 companies from 16 countries shows that a third (34.06%) will only attend an international event, when vaccination takes place. Let’s hope that happens sooner rather than later for so many reasons, including getting people doing business again in person.

Can I ask - which associations are proving valuable during these strange times? If you belong to one that you think is working particularly hard to support you please let me know - whether it be print specific or otherwise. I’d appreciate your input. Many thanks in advance…

 

New report ‘Work in BETA: The Rising B2B Decision Maker’ has me wondering if you think very hard about the age of those you recruit, and whether attitudes of certain age groups impact your strategic thinking? Plenty in the BETA generation - those aged 21-40 - must be clamouring for jobs with real career potential right now, and looking at this report they appear a hardworking bunch. But do reports like this lead companies down the path of ageism?

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