What do paper and rock superstar Madonna have in common? The answer, says Potlatch: They both need to reinvent themselves.
For the coated paper market, nothing could be more advantageous for vendors than recognizing the demand for adaptability. But for publishers, understanding the science and economics of the market is equally invaluable. As a result, coated paper coverage is broken into three categories: What it is, how can it be used and what to expect this quarter.
Coated paper stock, manufactured with clay or coating applied to one or both sides, comes in a variety of styles, including dull, gloss, matte and embossed. While most coated papers produce sharper, brighter images because inks do not absorb as readily, choosing the right paper for an affordable price can be daunting. Photographs and color reproductions generally print better on coated paper, which is often used for art books or periodicals heavy with advertisements and illustrations. But what happens when the economy recesses and advertising pages are down?
"The coated paper industry will perhaps be harmed the most by the lower paper demand we are expecting in 2002," reports Resource Information Systems (RIS) (www.resourceinfo.com) with Magazine Publishers of America (MPA) (www.magazine.org). The organizations predicted that 2002 "could signal another year of significant ad page declines."
In the magazine and catalog publishing markets, cost invariably influences consumption patterns. Often, vendors are forced either to lower prices to unload stock or raise them if demand does not meet supply. Notes RIS, "True consumption of coated paper will be minimal." Keeping an eye on paper promotions may be the way to satisfy needs on a case-by-case basis.
What's in a name?
Potlatch (www.potlatch.com) released two such promotions, REV and VROOM. The former, Reward Enhancement Vehicle, is a frequent buyer program that offers incentives for using Vintage Gloss, Velvet and the new Vintage Silk coated papers. Acid-free and available in multiple weights, VROOM showcases Potlatch Vintage, a No. 1 grade paper that uses 10 percent post-consumer waste, important for cost-conscious buyers.