Welcome to the first installment of 1/1 – an interview series allowing us to meet some of the Pro’s in our community on a more personal level.  My questions were posed via email to gather information, and have a little fun, and the recipients were asked to reply in the same manner.  I’m looking forward to “introducing” you to some really cool people who do some really cool things and hope you all enjoy this project and maybe make somenew connections along the way…

So… without further ado…

MEET DAN TALLARICO: Social Media / PR Specialist at Printing Industries of America (PIA) www.printing.org

Hi Dan. First thank you for being my guinea pig for what I hope will be a fun and informative Q&A session that will continue for years to come… no pressure.

DC: Can you briefly describe the function of PIA…

DT: If by briefly you mean 733 words, then yes.

Printing Industries of America (www.printing.org) at its core is concerned about advancing graphic communications over all aspects of the industry. Since print is engrained deeply into society you begin to see the scope of all the things we cover. To break things down, we have the Center for Technology and Research that develops new print technologies (have you seen our new version 6.0 test forms? www.printing.org/v6testforms) and also harbors a team of consultants and industry experts to help your printer become more sustainable, run tests, or act as a neutral third party to figure out why a print job went wrong.

Under the Center, we have an environmental health and safety (EHS) department that keeps an eye on the initiatives that organizations like OSHA and the EPA are enacting and how it may impact the printing industry. The EHS also helps printers become more sustainable and eco-friendly by developing our green guide (www.printing.org/greenguide) and being a founding partner in the Sustainable Green Printing Partnership (www.sgppartnership.org).

Our Digital Printing Council (DPC) (www.printing.org/dpc) is a select program open to all Printing Industries of America members. The DPC provides its members and the printing industry with informative tools and publications that are designed to help firms be more productive, efficient, and generate more sales with new digital technologies.

We have economic advisors that forecast the future of the industry and monitor trends. They provide our members with up-to-date information on the economy and print markets so they have a stronger competitive advantage over nonmember. They produce the Ratios the Flash Reports, the Compensation and Benefit Reports to name just a few. More info can be found here: http://www.printing.org/economics

We have a fully stocked bookstore that is home to some of the preeminent books in the industry. We are always publishing new books to help spread the printing knowledge. There are books on binding and finishing, workflow, printing plant layout, inkjet, digital printing and nearly everything you’d ever want to know. You can browse the collection here: www.printing.org/store.
I’m not even halfway done yet!

Books are a great way to pass on information and ensure the advancement of graphic communications, but we also have a myriad of training programs for all levels of folks in the industry. We have webinars (http://www.printing.org/webinars), custom training that is tailored to individual/company needs (http://www.printing.org/training), and training programs throughout the year. Most recently we welcomed teachers from across the country for the Graphic Communication Teacher’s Update. One of the teacher’s blogged her experience and you can read about her experience at: http://funxionology.blogspot.com. We also host a bevy of awards to recognize trail blazers in the field, a list of which can be found here: http://www.printing.org/awards. We put on conferences (Converge, Offset and Beyond, President’s Conference) for printers to come together to network, mingle and talk about problems with like minded people.

To help ensure the government isn’t restricting printers or passing bills that may harm and impede the advancement of graphic communication, we have a group of people in D.C. keeping an eye out. They monitor what is going on in congress and help communicate those happenings to our membership. Currently, they’re battling the postal hikes and have teamed with the Affordable Mail Alliance (www.affordablemailalliance.org).

Also part of the Printing Industries of America are smaller, more niche councils. They cater to the finer aspects of the industry. We have TAGA (http://www.printing.org/taga) that covers the technical aspect, Binding Industries Association (http://www.printing.org/bia) that works with binders and finishers, there’s the Web Offset Association (http://www.printing.org/weboffsetassociation) that services web offset printers in all areas, including magazines, catalogs, inserts, direct mail, and general commercial printers, the Label Printing Industries of America (LPIA) that is the premier, member-driven organization representing the interests of the label converting, packaging, top-sheet, folding cartons, corrugatedboxes, and PoP printing community and the suppliers to this industry. We also help printers with automation and JDF integration (http://www.printing.org/automation).

We service a membership that has access to all areas of our websites, receives a flow of information, exclusive content and discounts in all departments. If this sounds like something that intrigues you find your local affiliate here: http://www.printing.org/page/2603.

We do all this and more at Printing Industries of America. If there are any questions you can find us on Twitter (www.twitter.com/printind) or Facebook (www.facebook.com/printingindustries) to ask questions, gain information or participate in our growing community.

DC: When we spoke on the phone a few weeks ago, you mentioned your position was a new role at the company.  Why do you think PIA invested in a Social Media specialist?

DT: First, social media continues to grow at an incredible pace. With the way technology is intertwined in our daily lives it’s difficult to avoid. So, as more printers move onto social networks to gain the attention of their clients, we too move into this space to communicate with printers.

Second, social media is made up of an array of tools that requires constant attention and tuning. I’m here to make sure those tools are implemented correctly and efficiently to foster smooth communication of ideas and resources. Also, the Internet is a large space to monitor and, believe it or not, it’s a genuinely busy job.

DC: I have come across many Printers who don’t feel Social Media is part of their business or should be part of their business strategy.  If you had the chance to convince them they were mistaken in 10 words or less, what would you say?

DT: Your future customers will be in this space!

DC: If there was a Social Media Platform named after you what would it be called?

DT: If it was named after me I guess it would just be called “Dan Tallarico.” If I had the opportunity to name one it would be called “Lett-Us” and would help promote crunchy, healthy ideas.

DC: Rumors abound that Facebook is moving toward being a paid service. If that was the case, how do you feel about it and would you pay a monthly fee to be my friend?

DT: If that happened, I’d hope that MySpace (or Google) would fill the void and continue to offer the networking tools for free. I don’t think they could get away with charging a subscription for their service, but I wouldn’t pay for friendship.

DC: What do you think are the top 5 misuses of Twitter in a business capacity?  If misuse isn’t the word you would use, please feel free to correct and publicly humiliate me.

DT:

1.  Using Twitter solely as a RSS feed for your news

2.  Only spewing out content and not engaging community

3.  Not being pro-active in fostering a conversation

4.  Using it as a 140-character billboard

5.  Not bringing a personality to the table

Misuse is a fine word!

DC: Lastly, if you were asked to give the commencement speech at Bloomsburg University next month (lets just pretend graduation is in August)… what would your key message be to the students who we can also pretend are paying attention to you…

DT: You have to create your own opportunities and that everything/everyone deserves a fair chance. I’d also probably quote some philosophers, athletes and Dr.Seuss.


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