You’ve taken the Pantone® plunge! Maybe you’ve invested in a stellar Pantone ink mixing system, like the Green Galaxy® Fusion Mixing System, or maybe you’re an old-hat at mixing custom Pantone colors and you could teach us a thing or two about how color theory affects Pantone matching and color accuracy. Either way, you’re all equipped to mix custom ink colors but do you have a plan to make money with your Pantone color mixing system?
To make money with your Pantone color mixing system it comes down to adopting an appropriate mindset and marketing plan. You can’t view your shop’s offerings the same way as a shop who bases their services around standard ink colors of one variety. The things that really set custom ink color mixing apart, will need to set your shop apart too. It’s only through taking advantage of these benefits that you will really start to use your color mixing system effectively.
Here are some tips to help you turn your Pantone Ink Mixing System into a money-maker for your screen printing shop:
1. Capitalize on the niche.
Finding and taking advantage of your niche is the first step in creating a successful screen printing business. Offering custom colors can help you to break into, and retain customers in a few really great markets. Specifically, brands who need a specific Pantone® color printed for their brand identity and universities or schools who have logos that need accurate color matching. Many clothing lines, from big to small, require a printer with this ability and are willing to pay for it. If you can commit to quality color mixing in your business, you can land some repeat business from these types of customers. Lean on your strengths. Having a good color mixing system is definitely a niche offering that you can build a business on.
2. Save with a made-to-order mindset.
With the ability to mix custom ink colors, comes the same ability to mix standard colors. Often, for less money than you would get it for from a manufacturer. Standard inks are mixed at the manufacturer from pigments just like yours, so purchasing ready to use inks from a manufacturer is like paying someone else to mix your inks for you. Instead, set up your shop with a made-to-order mindset and consider every job a custom order. There are no standard ink colors when armed with an ink mixing system, and mixing an orange costs about the same amount as mixing any other color. That saves you money on custom ink colors that you would otherwise have to order at higher cost. Next time you run out of orange in the middle of a print job, don’t worry about having to wait to order more, just mix it. With an ink mixing system, there’s a whole world of colors at your fingertips.
3. Only mix what you need.
Another benefit of a mixing to-order mindset is the ability to mix selective custom color quantities. A lot of custom color jobs don’t require an entire container of pre-mixed ink. Instead of watching your custom ink pints and gallons of obscure standard colors from that one 200 shirt print last year get dry and crusted up in a corner, mix up only what you need. This saves you on waste, and money.
4. Diversify your printing options.
If you choose to go with a pigment mixing system, then you have the advantage. Being able to select your bases, allows you to customize your ink beyond the color choice. Water based pigments can be added to discharge bases to create Pantone® colors with a super soft hand. Opaque bases can be used to print on dark garments, for a thicker body and more wash-fastness. Using a clear base with water based pigment will give a very true Pantone® match and soft hand to your custom mixed ink. Additives can add an additional variant to your ink, creating an almost infinite variety of options. Market your shop’s ability to print on diverse garment types and mix your ink directly for the kind of garment you are printing on. Unlike shops who rely on pre-mixed inks, you already have all of the tools necessary to print opaque for dark garments, discharge for cottons and even low-cure for fleeces and athletic apparel. To use your pigment mixing system most effectively, focus on the variety of options you can offer to your customers.
Ready to pull your scale out and start a rainbow chemistry lab? You’re on the right track to make money with your Pantone Color Mixing System.