Company increased business 30% by giving customers these dual benefits
In the Scheldt estuary, in southwest Netherlands, sea level is a full 3 metres above land. It’s the area where the river Scheldt flows into the North Sea, where one eats the best oysters in the world, where people live under constant threat of flood, and it’s where ‘green’ products are probably appreciated more than anywhere else in the world.
Businesses here usually specialise in ship repair, yacht maintenance and the making of hi-tech fishing nets. It’s also the place which JMC Signmakers, a company founded by CEO Cees Bolijn, his wife, and his brother in 1991, calls home. The company started life as a supplier of sign products, lettering and associated graphic design services. Being a family business, its three founders are intensely engaged in day-to-day activities, from managing the workplace to the marketing and purchase of new technology.
Today, the company offers a wide variety of services including cutting, printing, and installing billboards, point of purchase displays and other sign products.
Full service and care
In a market that thrives on delivering large volumes for a low price, JMC Signmakers employs a two-pronged strategy to drive the company’s success: offer customers a first-class customer care experience and never invest in markets that don’t grow. Since 2005, the company’s return has never fallen below 30%.
JMC Signmakers almost never over-capacitates their superwide printer, the EFI VUTEk GS3250LX. “We want to be able to fulfill urgent orders,” says CEO Cees Bolijn. “You can’t do that if the machine is tied up 24/7.” JMC Signmakers isn’t interested in spitting out as many square metres as possible. Instead, the company wants to be ready for a large diversity of assignments. They will handle everything from indoor billboards and wall posters to safety instructions printed on 2mm polyester in 8-point type.
Bolijn takes customer care to an even higher level. He has installed online tracking on every vehicle that’s on the road. Apart from showing the location of the vehicle, it will even forewarn when the weather will prohibit working outdoors so Bolijn can inform his customers in time.
Growth markets only
When the company planned on purchasing the EFI VUTEk GS3250LX, they first ran a survey: “We asked 24 of our customers — advertising firms — if they thought they would need higher resolution and better colour,” Bolijn explains. “They all answered they didn’t.”
Despite this negative result, the company went ahead anyway, as the three founders were convinced their customers couldn’t imagine what would be possible when they could suddenly have razor-sharp six-point type and photo-quality gradients. In addition, they realised a printer with environmental benefits would appeal to many prospects who previously would have regarded JMC Signmakers as just another sign services firm.
Their vision worked. Even before the printer had output one piece of printed material, JMC Signmakers became the centre of attention in the whole Dutch business community. They were the first to have a printer with a tiny ecological footprint —Bolijn reports a power consumption of 75% less than their first VUTEk— and an output quality that is simply gorgeous.
The EFI VUTEk GS3250LX is an LED-based printer designed to lower total cost of ownership over the printer's lifetime. It lowers operating costs with cool cure technology and high productivity features. It contains no VOCs, uses less consumables, produces less waste, uses less energy and has the ability to print on recycled and other materials without warping or head strikes. Yet, the VUTEk GS3250LX produces stunning point-of-purchase graphics to impress the most demanding professional.
“We noticed our customers started running more indoor applications over the years,” he says. It took the discerning eye of the professional to realise that their first EFI VUTEk — an entry model QS220 — wasn’t going to cut it if they wanted to produce photo portraits for perfume stores, invitations, small printed boxes, etc.
“As soon as they saw the results of what is possible with this new machine, our customers started finding new applications they had not thought of before,” says Bolijn. “They had simply failed to imagine what better all-round quality could mean for their business,” he says.
New applications equals new business. JMC Signmakers is all set and ready to grow another 30%.
JMC Signmakers wanted to expand their reach by producing higher quality photo portraits for perfume stores, invitations, small printed boxes, etc.
The founders were convinced their customers couldn’t imagine what would be possible when they could suddenly have razor-sharp 6-point type and photo-quality gradients of the VUTEk GS3250LX. In addition, they realised a printer with environmental benefits would appeal to many prospects.
“As soon as they saw the results of what is possible with this new machine, customers started finding new applications they had not thought of before.”