You can touch this

By John Blyth, Marketing and Communications Manager,Graphic Communications Group, Ricoh Europe

Ricoh Europe, London, July 21 2021-Touch is a sense we experience even before we are born and we use it instinctively from the moment we take our first breath.

 We rely on it to communicate physical and emotional information. We can’t help but pick things up. Feeling their shape, texture and weight enables us to better assess what we are holding. It helps us make everyday decisions – is the towel dry, the cup of tea hot, the fruit ripe, the seat comfortable?

 It can influence abstract concepts too. Such as hardness signifying greater rigidity than softness.

It can also affect what we pay attention to and how we respond. A study by Canadian neuromarketing firm TrueImpact, sponsored by Canada Post, compared printed direct mail, with digital email and display ads, using three key metrics – cognitive load (ease of understanding), attention (how long subjects looked at the content), and motivation (persuasiveness).

It found direct mail requires 21% less cognitive workload, resulting in higher brand recall and it focuses attention more successfully because of a lack of distractions. Direct mail is more persuasive than digital media as its motivation response is 20% higher. The figure is greater if it appeals to more senses beyond touch.

The ability to drive engagement through touch adds value to not just direct mail. Point of Purchasing, packaging, greetings cards, invitations, business cards and more can all be transformed with the addition of a haptic element.

And while memory recall is likely to be higher when high quality paper is used, engaging the sense of touch creates a feeling of ownership that prompts action.

Aside from the choice of paper, a haptic element can be added in the digital production process.

The Ricoh Pro C9200 Series of digital colour sheetfed presses can deliver a matte or glossy feel during the printing of applications while systems such as Duplo’s DuSense sensory coater add a layer of coating. It can lay the coating on pre-assigned areas to create different thicknesses and achieve a variety of high impact effects. These sensory results can be further enhanced with the addition of metallic designs using Color-Logic.

The capability can open huge opportunities according to InfoTrends. It reported 30% of all colour pages (offset and digital) receive some type of special effects enhancement but just 0.5% are currently being enhanced with a digital process. The potential is huge, particularly as print buyers are prepared to pay an 89% premium for textured work.

Ricoh has developed a series of Digital Works Creative Inspiration Guides showcasing the production possibilities that address key growth areas identified by InfoTrends. The Neon book covers spot colour, gamut extension and fluorescent, the Metal book focuses on metallics and the Clear book features coating and security. There are books for white and foil applications as well and a forthcoming Touch book which will highlight textured finishes.

The series includes a design guide with tips and tricks on how to fully deploy these enhancement techniques as well as original artwork for print ready examples.

Adding different tactile finishes produces a printed application that demands to be touched, admired, and interacted with.

It provides creatives with a powerful, vibrant, and memorable way to grab and hold attention.

Are you ready to explore how these possibilities can produce tangible results that encourage instinctive engagement? 

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