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Merging Print and Digital Media

While some industry insiders have fretted that the advent of digital and online media such as tablet computers, social media, e-readers and smartphones will spell the death of print media, the more savvy print professionals among us are finding unique ways to turn these trends into advantages.

Quick response codes are a good example of this bridge, as these barcode-like images can be printed on virtually any material and scanned for information by smartphones and other mobile devices.

Other print professionals, such as Mark Lynch and Ash Watson, are applying new technologies to classic purposes. These Australian print professionals invented an iPhone app that allows users to snap photos of anything they would like, whereupon the images are sent to the Melbourne-based Direct Digital Group and converted into postcards to be returned to customers via mail.

"The use of mobile technology is skyrocketing and we wanted to be a part of that," Lynch told the Melbourne Herald Sun.

The smartphone app serves as an ideal example of how print professionals need to embrace creativity and ingenuity in order to compete in an ever-tightening market. While print is surely here to stay, businesses that are able to merge print and digital media will have a leg up on the competition.

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