PacPrint13 and Visual Impact has outstripped expectations and succeeded in its two most important aims – to provide a showcase of the very latest innovation in the print and graphic communications industry and a successful environment in which to conduct business. Importantly, it also lived up to its aim to provide the ideas, information and resources required by an ‘industry in transition’.
More than 10,000 industry professionals visited PacPrint and Visual Impact over five days. Including those who attended for more than one day and the visitors to the co-located Visual Impact exhibition, the total visit tally reached a very respectable 13,427 for the week. While this represents a lower overall tally than in 2009, exhibitors across the board expressed pleasant surprise at the numbers, which exceeded their expectations, and were also delighted with what they saw as the excellent quality of the visitors. As one exhibitor said, “We may not be seeing as many people as in 2009, but we are definitely seeing the right people”.
70% of the visitors came from Victoria, 12% from New South Wales, 5% from Queensland, with another 6% from other States. A further 7% came from overseas destinations. 17% of visitors to PacPrint13 identified themselves as CEO or MD of their company, another 17% registered as ‘owner’ or ‘partner’ and a further14% as being in management positions – making 48% of all visitors to PacPrint13 key decision makers. For exhibitors, this breakdown – together with the excellent number of sales made – demonstrated the value of their participation.
On top of that, nearly 20% of overall visitors were print buyers and specifiers – designers, advertising agencies, marketers and corporates – an audience which was specifically targeted following pre-show research indicating the need for the show to cement the advantages of print with that market.
“PacPrint13 has provided a positive and optimistic ‘shot in the arm’ for the industry in a time of unprecedented transition,” said Ian Martin, PacPrint13 Chairman, after the close of the show today. “There has been a constant buzz around the stands, not only generated by good numbers of visitors, but by the genuine interest and expectation shown by those people in what PacPrint exhibitors had to offer.”
The technology, innovation and solutions on show at the exhibition proper were complemented by intelligence, ideas and information delivered at the PacPrint13 Forum Series and the inaugural Business Development Workshop programme.
At three PacPrint Forum sessions, visitors were encouraged to consider the impact of global trends, to identify and address specific issues and challenges being faced by the industry and to look at how to lead more effectively and successfully manage change, both personally and professionally. All generated significant interest and lively, robust discussion.
The Business Improvement Workshops provided short, sharp and targeted sessions on subjects ranging from the industry’s environmental credentials, to government support programmes, multi-channel marketing and the digital economy, insurance and superannuation. All sessions were well attended, with feedback from visitors very positive.
“PacPrint13 has demonstrated that, even in today’s plugged-in, switched-on world, trade shows are still enormously valuable for both exhibitors and visitors,” says Martin.
“As well as gathering all the latest and most innovative technology under one roof, PacPrint13 also provided the opportunity to meet with suppliers, colleagues, peers and friends to discuss new technologies and also wider business issues. Professional visitors were able to see, touch and feel possible solutions, to discover new options and ideas that they may never have thought to look for. Perhaps most importantly, buyers and suppliers were able to share experiences and offer each other encouragement as we face this time of transition together.”
These benefits, he said, were clearly enjoyed at PacPrint13 with visitor and exhibitor feedback suggesting that this year’s show took all these things to a new level – on the exhibition floor, at a series of associated events and, more generally, around Melbourne in the evenings as groups gathered to continue their ‘PacPrint experience’.
Many participants acknowledged that perhaps the most valuable contribution of this edition of PacPrint will be the ‘shot in the arm’ it has given to the industry in a time of acknowledged change, challenge and transition.
“The ability to assess, develop and transform our businesses to meet new and changing market demands has always been a hallmark of success,” says Martin. “For all of us, there is inherent risk in change and transition, but as we were reminded in the final PacPrint Forum, sometimes ‘the biggest risk is to take no risks at all’.
“The key when responding to change is to take calculated and educated risks, and the information delivered at the Forums and Workshops, together with the products, systems and ideas on show at the exhibition, have given PacPrint13 visitors a better understanding of where the world is headed, how to approach transition, as well as emphasising the critical role our leaders, and our people, will play in our ongoing success.
“Looking forward, we hope that the renewed sense of optimism and confidence which was so evident at PacPrint will translate into a re-energised industry ready to tackle the challenges of transition. If so, we have more than achieved our aims.”
Visual Industries Suppliers Association