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Are Traditional Printing and Digital Crowd-Funding Friends or Enemies?

At first look, it may seem that anything that has to do with the digital world, the Internet, crowd-funding, etc. would be the natural enemy of any hold over from the industrial age, like say, traditional printing. But nothing could be further from the truth.

Crowd-funding is actually helping maker-cultures throughout the country enjoy the benefits of traditional printing for a variety of project types, only without much of the speculative risk that use to be associated with spending out of pocket and hoping you could recoup costs from either sales or donations.

Letterpress, offset, and other forms of traditional printing are enjoying a bit of a resurgence, especially for projects that require a look and feel that is difficult to get with digital printing. And crowd-funding is one of the ways that traditional forms of printing are being funded.

It may not be the most obvious match, but traditional forms of just about anything can use all the help they can get.

traditional printing and crowdsourcing

Crowd-Funding Is Helping to Keep Print Magazines Alive

Print magazines, literary quarterlies and the like have had a rough couple of decades. E-readers, online retailing, declines in reading print for enjoyment, and other factors have seemingly conspired to kill off the print magazine as an institution.

While many of the big print magazines and newspapers are limping along, combining layoffs and cutbacks in service with an increase in their web presence and reliance on advertising sales, small magazines and literary quarterlies have turned to crowd-funding and other types of online fundraising to cover their traditional print costs.

Crowd-Funding Driving Self-Publishing and Small Presses Back Into Print

Crowd-funding is also being used by self-publishing authors to not only pay for print runs of their books and ephemera, but also to determine the size of their print runs.

traditional printing and crowdsourcing

Thanks to the Internet and crowd-funding, authors and small presses now have the ability to manage the hardest part of the publishing business: determining how many books to print so that you won’t have to pulp leftover copies, or miss out on any opportunities to sell.

Crowd-Funding May Help to Save Traditional Printing

Beyond segments of the print industry that have suffered since the mass adoption of the Internet, there are many nonprofits and small businesses that rely on crowd-funding to help them underwrite the cost of printing ephemera, business supplies, letterhead, wide format signs, and other marketing collateral.

Couple this use of crowd-funding with what is happening in the independent publishing and music worlds, and you can make a good case for traditional printing and crowd-funding making excellent bedfellows.

At the very least, they certainly aren’t enemies! If you’re looking to put your hard-earned crowd-funding dollars to work on a new print project, get in touch with East Side Printing Co. today. We’re here to act as your print and design partner, and will help to guide you through each stage of the process. Call us for a free, no-hassle quote now!

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