The first thing to do is to determine your target market. Are you going for graphic designs on mouse pads? Try checking out that competition in that category. See what big Asian companies are marketing mouse pads for. They are going to be your main competitors. In case you’ll steer away from them and target the smaller market within decent margins, study the local competition for the said product. Be sure to know what clients are going to benefit for the product itself. |
If you’ll go with mugs, check again with the Asian market, especially China, to see prices and how the mugs are being sold. If you find the rate to be outrageously low, look over the local market. If it’s okay with you to personally contact targeted clients in the local area, you can create your own market of clients who probably don’t want to purchase loads of boxes of box, but may order a few hundred dozens. You might be able to compete in that locally targeted market.
And then you’ll require a really good and dye sublimation printing machine. It would depend on the product and target market you are looking at. If for mugs or mouse pads, you’ll want the smaller printer. If for large format displays like banners, you’ll need a wide format printer. With that, you need to get a print press that fits the product you’ll be targeting. Small dimensions for smaller items up to the large ones like trade show ad displays are available.
You need to select a quality brand of Cyan-Magenta-Yellow-Overprint color inks. When you purchase brand new printer, you’ll be stuck with using the default inks along with the machine during the whole warranty period. Once that is over, you can order bulk of dyes that enables you to save 75% of your ink expenses.
And then you have to acquire the paper suitable for dye sub printing. It is termed as at dye sublimation paper since it is specifically used for the said print processing. The image is printed on it, and then transferred to the substrate with the aid of pressure and heat. During the process, the dye is converted to gas and then presses onto a polymer-based fabric.
You need to get a polymer substrate from a trusted wholesale company. It is wise to buy those quality items as this would give your customers the impression on what kind of products and services you are promoting. If you want to get those large format polyester substrates for pressing graphics on flag banners, it is wise to first test printing on a small roll of material you can find.
There are instances where wholesale companies send you some items that you can test with, especially if you are going to pay for the shipment. If you are ordering offshore, try to ask how the fabric substrate is made which would include the materials and processes used. In addition, remember that the lowest price is not always the best. I usually would advice to have 25 quotes for a certain item, and then get the 3rd/4th lowest bid, and not necessarily the lowest one.
There can be a time when the lowest bid becomes the best one, but not all the time. You’ll see that the lowest bid would cost you products you never wanted, or it could be something new and cheaper than what you intended to get.
If you have done or collected the things you need, the next thing is probably the toughest one, which is getting customers. It is pretty much understandable that finding good customers is hard. You need to come up with something that your competitors don’t have. Perhaps, you can offer services for 24/7 or give free shipping. You can also provide discounts to first time clients if you want to. If you can only get clients to engage a conversation with you, your chance of landing them is greater than merely sending off emails.
For more about dye sublimation printing on polymer-based fabric substrates, view here>.
Visigraph is an online resource for custom Digital and Screen Printing of large format Banners, Signs, Stickers, and Tradeshow Displays.
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