How Light Production Technology Can Support Marketing Initiatives

Organizations reliant on hardcopy marketing material, including brochures and mailers, are encouraged to consider light production technology for their printing needs. These devices go beyond the capabilities of office-class printers to deliver higher-quality output in less time (and often for less money).

This insight piece will discuss key attributes of light production printers, and how these characteristics align with key needs in marketing departments.  

High print speed helps ensure fast turnaround times

Keypoint Intelligence-InfoTrends considers 70 pages per minute to be a minimum print speed for a monochrome light production printer. That said, printers providing output speeds of 70 or 80 pages per minute are not necessarily light production if they don’t integrate other key features (e.g., relatively high duty cycle, wide media support).

Fast printing is important in marketing environments where quick turnaround times are often required. Organizations can print out large quantities of pamphlets or other material in a short period of time, helping guarantee that marketing campaigns stay on schedule.

Fast printing speeds also give organizations more freedom to perform test runs to ensure optimal print quality. In addition, they leave more time for other important marketing tasks such as customer research, graphic design, digital marketing, and return on investment analysis.

High duty cycle helps keep device up and running

Duty cycle is the theoretical average number of pages the machine can be used for (without failing) in a given time period. Color light production systems tend to have a duty cycle of between 101,000 and 300,000 impressions per month.

To put that into perspective, 300,000 pages is 60 cases of paper (5,000 sheets per case), or two cases a day.

Figure 1: One 5,000-sheet case of paper


While companies may not be printing this quantity of output on a regular basis, it can be reassuring to know that their device can handle this level of printing if need be. There may be instances when a particular campaign, client request, or time of year requires a particularly large print run. This capability also helps ensure that sample prints can be handled.  

Support for large runs reduces the chance the device will break down, maximizing organizational productivity. Given the importance of deadlines and tight schedules in marketing, this capability can prove highly beneficial.

Wide media support, robust finishing help create memorable experience

Light production systems frequently support the use of heavier paper stocks as well as coated and uncoated stock. In some cases, media like plastic, window clings, magnets, postcards, and textured linen may also be supported.

These systems also tend to offer finishing capabilities that go beyond those of office-class devices. For instance, they may integrate finishers that can perform folding and trimming; produce lay-flat books and full-bleed booklets; create perfectly bound documents; and support third-party integration.

With marketing departments aiming to create a memorable experience in the eye of the customer, it’s clear that robust media support and finishing capabilities can enable professional-looking output that veers from the norm. A piece of marketing material with a special look and feel can make a significant impact on a customer’s opinion of a particular product, service, and/or company.

3 takeaways

  • Compared to office-class print devices, light production systems tend to feature faster print speeds, higher duty cycles, and more robust media and finishing support including booklet-making capabilities.
  • In-house light production devices help organizations achieve marketing objectives tied to turnaround time, volume printing, and print quality.
  • The print quality benefits associated with light production print technology can help organizations boost the effectiveness of printed marketing material and in turn customer response rates.