Over 200 print industry owners, and executives gathered for three days during the first week of March to network and listened to presentations that will help them improve operations, reach financial objectives and better serve their customer base.

Domtar is an annual sponsor of this event as it fits our core belief of advocating for the print industry. The President’s Conference serves as a forum for print leaders that will inspire best practices and innovations that influence print.

The big news at the event was the kick off of a new advocacy campaign of Printing Industry of America (PIA) titled Print Powers America. For printing and packaging companies this campaign will strive to strengthen the nation’s public policy commitment to the print and graphic communications industry.

The initiative is funded by volunteer contributions. There is a suggested annual donation rate card based on a company’s number of employees. The supporters of Print Powers America are committed to promoting print’s economic impact, emphasizing environmental stewardship and showcasing industry innovation.

The website has a library of data and infographics that are a resource for printers to use with their customers. The infographics support effectiveness of direct mail for charitable giving, combinations of printed with online catalogs and printed flyers for shoppers.

David Nelsen from Dialog Consulting led a popular session on the various platforms of social media, and the best practices for using them. He also introduced me and most of the room to a relatively new platform called Slack. It’s software that allows for more streamlined communication between employees.

If you can visualize a screen that looks more like a chat conversation than a list of continuous e-mails back and forth, that is one image of slack that I can give you. One of the benefits is that it can potentially eliminate team meetings. It can provide more efficient and collaborative online communication that can improve your production time.

If you are a Commercial Printer and are evaluating educational options to help with your business, I think you will find the President’s Conference a valuable investment of time and money. Membership in PIA is not required to attend the Conference. If you want a more comprehensive look at the 2018 presentations, PIA has them available on their website.

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