The most recent trends in book printing

May 24, 2012 – The book printing industry has experienced dynamic changes in the last decade; analysts say. According to a book printing expert with Smithers Pira, “Pressure from the internet, an increase in the popularity of magazines and the movement of printing to developing countries have all tested this traditionally buoyant industry”. According to analysts, it is the internet pressure especially that has resulted in the very new trends that are being witnessed in the book printing industry lately.
Evolution of the book printing industry
The book printing company dates back to the early centuries B.C when the first prints were seen. Since then, a lot has changed in terms of the printing ink, paper quality and the printing technology that is used. However, the major changes have occurred in the recent decades with the onset of digital media. With every other technology going digital, book printing has not been left behind and every other book printing company is jumping onto the bandwagon in order to keep up with the changing times.
Major trends in book printing
Traditional book printing was done using the offset printing method where a printing company would print books in bulk to reduce the cost per unit and then market them through a publishing house. The desire to reduce costs has seen more recent printing trends such as short run (digital printing) and print on demand book printing gain popularity exceeding the offset printing method. As one analyst notes regarding the rapidly increasing popularity of print on demand printing “What happens when you can print one book for 120%/per unit of the price of 3,000 books? An industry changes. The book publishing industry has changed because this is the new reality”.
Another trend that is gaining popularity in the book printing company is self publishing. This trend has replaced vanity publishing which always had a bad name in terms of promoting undeserving authors who would in turn end up with huge bills and books that are not selling in the market. Also, vanity publishers lacked the proper mechanisms to distribute the books to the target audience. Self publishing together with the internet has helped many authors reach out to their target audience. As another book printing expert notes, “In the age of the Internet, distribution issues are significantly muted, and the reading public has discovered that they don’t necessarily care what The New York Times says about an inexpensive book covering a topic in which they’re interested”.
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